Did you ever imagine something as classic as dining out in a restaurant and something as high-tech as metaverse joining forces? By Sreetama Basu
We didn’t either. Until Ms Supreet Raju launched OneRare, the brainchild of the husband-wife duo of Supreet Raju & Gaurav Gupta, who believe food has a language of its own and makes the world a happier place with every bite. This love for food has given birth to the idea behind this Foodverse, the world’s first tokenisation platform for food on the Blockchain in an immersive and gamified experience. OneRare is an original, first-of-its-kind NFT Economy game that runs on cooperation and trade between play-to-earn gamers and NFT collectors.
The platform will celebrate food from all corners of the world, while using the gaming format to teach new users about the blockchain in an engrossing way. OneRare features global cuisines, special diets (keto/vegan), & exclusive collaborations with celebrity chefs, restaurants and Web3 projects. However, the heart of OneRare lies in the kitchen, where one can claim dish NFTs by collecting Ingredients as per the recipes. With the right ingredients, anyone can claim to be the owner of a Dish in this Foodverse.
Their latest member? None other than Chef Vicky Ratnani is known for his world travel itinerary & culinary education. Building his creative ideas to launch the state-of-the-art hyperreal restaurant and kitchen, OneRare will be tokenising some of Chef Vicky’s most beloved recipes including a few from his recent creation, Speak Burgers, as unique food NFTs to be owned and enjoyed by his fans and global foodies of the Foodverse.
In conversation with Ms Supreet Raju and Chef Vicky Ratnani, let’s hear it from the trailblazer themselves.
All you need to know about OneRare
Chef Vicky Ratnani
What was your first thought when you heard about this idea? Which was that one thing or one moment that made you decide to say yes?
The first time I heard about the Foodverse, I knew it had the potential to transform the F&B industry. I am constantly observing food tech trends and of late, the emergence of blockchain and NFTs. OneRare is combining the latest technology with the food industry, and it’s going to add a lot of value to our lives. The idea of a virtual food experience is extremely exciting, and I think the way OneRare envisions the future of food was a clincher for me.
You have a dedicated fanbase already and there are people who look up to your creations. How do you think collaborating with OneRare would enhance that?
I believe that my fanbase admires me for my frequent experimentation with my craft. Be it my recipes, the way I design my space and the food experiences in my restaurants. Collaborating with OneRare, I’m excited to take my experiences to the virtual world and see how my fans react and interact with the space. OneRare and I have similar ideologies when it comes to technology and food, and we have the same objective. We are trying to make your food experience better and I am sure every foodie will enjoy this new journey.
You know how the likes of Facebook and Instagram all began with a unidimensional purpose and then just blew up? Now, of course, Metaverse is touted as the next big thing. But from a chef’s point of view, how do you think the traditional dining scene in India is going to evolve when Metaverse blows up to become the next big thing?
Indians have always been tech-savvy – look at how quickly we adapted to the digitisation of payments, food delivery, and e-commerce. We love experimenting with technology to make our lives easier. With the Metaverse, a whole new spectrum of virtual interaction opens up.
The traditional dining scene in India is constantly evolving and we have seen some massive changes post-covid. Users are steadily embracing technology for ordering, table reservations and booking experiences. Virtual restaurants & food experiences will allow food businesses to create a better, more immersive experience for patrons and grow their global presence.
Supreet Raju, Co-Founder, OneRare
First things first, how did the idea of OneRare occur to you? What was the thought process behind it?
We started building OneRare in January 2021 as a small NFT project celebrating food from across the world. Coming from a creative background, I always felt the need for blockchain technology to be simplified for encouraging adoption amongst users. NFTs opened up the door for creative Web3 projects and that was the gateway for us.
My co-founder, Gaurav, and I are avid foodies and food has always been a large part of our travels. Food has a universal language and something we feel everyone can easily relate to. We started building OneRare to encourage first-time users to engage with the blockchain, understand how this new technology works and use food works as a great medium for that. While Burning NFTs in Smart Contracts may seem too technical, it’s easy to explain how we cannot reverse the cooking process in our kitchens.
For those of our readers who aren’t very fluent in the Metaverse world, how would you describe the platform if you had to put it simply?
OneRare is building the world’s first food metaverse, aka, Foodverse, celebrating food from across the world. We are creating a unique, immersive experience for the global food community where you can interact with celebrity chefs, restaurants and food brands. You can visit them in their virtual stores, play games, collect NFTs, and swap your NFTs for real-life meals.
The Foodverse will allow you to expand your current virtual/app interactions with any food company – whether it is to check out their socials, order online, read reviews, make reservations – to a higher quality and more engaging experience.
Of course, it sounds like a brilliant concept. But if you had to pick one, what’s your favourite aspect about this initiative?
View this post on Instagram
I think food is a brilliant connector for people. You could be visiting a new country where you don’t understand their language, can’t read signboards, but can still form a powerful bond with locals serving you their cuisine. Bringing regional cuisines to the forefront and letting people across the world know more about food through NFT Artworks – I love the inclusive nature of OneRare. You can discover the national dish of Portugal while sitting in India, and find out what makes it special. I love the concept of making local food global.
Chef Vicky Ratnani and Saransh Goila are indeed the biggest names to have on board. Do you have plans of collaborating with other Indian chefs as well in the future?
Of course! Foodverse is open to everyone who loves food and wants to expand their horizons leveraging new technology. India has one of the richest and most diverse culinary legacies across the world, and we see so many Indian chefs doing amazing things now. From elevating regional recipes to reinventing modern Indian cuisine, the food scene is truly alive in India at the moment. We hope to bring a slice of each flavour to our Foodverse as we go along, and we have some exciting announcements lined up.
In which countries have you launched it?
The beauty of our Foodverse lies in its global appeal. There are no borders in the blockchain and we are leveraging Web3 to create a global food community. We have partnered with the top culinary players from across the world – from India, USA, UK, Australia and many more.
Yes, Metaverse is touted as the future right now. But do you also see this as the future of dining in India specifically?
View this post on Instagram
Every traditional industry evolves with the technology of the times. We had the decade of Social Media, where we started by assuming it to be a teenage fad and now, every company has a Social Media Team to carefully curate their virtual presence. Within the food industry itself, social media led to many new players and business models. For example, Home Chefs leveraged Instagram videos to gain massive fan following that led to cookbooks and even restaurant launches.
With the metaverse, the next decade of technology interaction with the industry begins. The Indian dining scene will definitely evolve as we go forward leveraging these virtual experiences – allowing people to make table reservations, build their 3D food to place orders, engage in membership clubs, and so much more.
How do you plan to leverage blockchain technology to develop a direct relationship with your customers?
Blockchain is a powerful tool to enable true ownership and accountability. Through NFTs and Smart Contracts, we can create a completely transparent platform for foodies to engage in and earn fair rewards. Web3 is all about community and that theme resonates perfectly with food, because food is all about sharing as well. With OneRare, we have created some unique contracts in our gameplay – including the world’s first smart contract for Staking that offers
NFTs as rewards. The power to mint Dish NFTs, own your assets in the ecosystem, and be able to carry those NFTs to the real world for real meals – we are focused on making the user’s experience immersive and phygital at the same time.
Metaverse is a new concept for the majority of people. Keeping that in mind, what setbacks do you think you might face as you expand more?
View this post on Instagram
I expect the Metaverse to see steady adoption as the awareness and tools grow, but I don’t foresee many setbacks. The Metaverse is nothing but an extension of our current digital lives. From the time we spend on various apps and social networking sites today, we are already digital-first. With the Metaverse, the quality of this experience will improve – the same way as our phone cameras have steadily improved with the growing reach of social media. The metaverse will phase in step-by-step, maybe starting with just using your 3D avatar on social media, or for example, having the ability to put your NFT as your display picture on Twitter now. There are many takers for virtual experiences now and the only limitation is how fast our software and hardware (headsets, VR technology) can lower entry-level costs to fuel mass adoption.
Again, since Metaverse is a whole new world, do you think the awareness about something as unique as OneRare is something that you have to actively work on? If yes, how do you plan to market it?
We have an advantage that no other web3 project currently has — the global love for food. Even if people don’t understand the metaverse or blockchain, they understand food. We see OneRare as a gateway to web3 for first-timer users, men and women, and we are definitely focused on creating awareness and community engagement as we go along.
OneRare brings real utility to NFTs and allows people to engage in virtual food experiences that could be leveraged in the real world for meals as well. We have been working hard since the past year to grow our community (now with 150k+ members) and try our best to help new users understand Web3 and our project better. Our Marketing is all about User Education and creating a fun narrative around food – we believe our Foodverse is the celebration, and the technology we use should not deter that.
Hero Image: Courtesy Chef Vicky Ratnani; Featured Image: Courtesy Instagram
This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia India