From our fashion choices to how we dispose of our packaging, we’re all trying to make a conscious effort to live more sustainably in 2020.

And now concept café Cassette, located in The Courtyard in Dubai’s creative Al Quoz district, is championing sustainable dining with its new specials menu featuring seasonal ingredients from UAE based partners and farmers.

Here owner Haider Madani chats to Grazia about the premise of sustainable dining and how it can help the food industry in the region grow and prosper.

What does sustainable dining mean?

Sustainability dining means operating in a way that protects, preserves and enhances the lives of people and our community. In Cassette we’ve brought down food wastage to a bare minimum and use biodegradable/recycled materials like containers, glassware, tissue paper and an eco-friendly hand dryer. We’ve partnered with local farmers to guarantee high quality, farm fresh produce that meet society’s current food needs without compromising on future generations’ requirements.

Do you make a conscious effort to only use foods that have been grown locally?

Yes, our greens, eggs and seafood are all sourced locally, keeping freshness intact. Working with Uns Farms provides our customers farm fresh fruits and vegetables that are homegrown.

Do you try and only use food that is in season?

Yes, we do. Apart from our regular menu, we have a special menu that uses seasonal ingredients. It gives a better taste. We want to collaborate with the local trade and reduce our carbon footprint, and be more ecological and respectful to the environment.

What are the biggest food trends for 2020? 

Much change is happening amongst consumers, it’s reshaping the way people interact with the food and beverage industry. For 2020 as people are embracing more of a low-carb lifestyle, more keto options should be available in the menu. Ingredients such as cauliflower are quite popular as people attempt to cut carbs. One of the other trends is the rise of milk alternatives like coconut, hemp and oat milks. Millennial parents are raising a generation of adventurous little foodies, so we think an upgrade on the kids’ menu with more choices and range is a must.

Do you think more restaurants are going to have vegan options on menus as standard?

Since most people are becoming socially conscious/aware of the benefits of being vegan, restaurants nowadays are offering more of these options. Cassette has 25 percent vegan dishes on the menu and can accommodate requests to change a non-vegetarian dish to vegan.

Photos: Instagram