There has been a restauarant here at Soresby Street in the centre of Chesterfield for several years, it had a great reputation for food and takeaways, but the dining experience at Sanzara's, as it was then called, left a bit to be desired.
Recognizing the potential for a top class Indian restaurant in Chesterfield, Umar Zaman bought the restaurant with his business associate Ahsan Raja, with a new vision.
Umar: "The problem with many Indian restaurants is the lack of spices and flavours, making the dishes taste bland and all the same whether it be a Bhuna or a Dopiaza. I wanted to bring something unique and different to Chesterfield. New dishes and Grilled food with a selection of fishes. Many of our herbs and spices are imported from India, Kashmir and Pakistan. I want the customers at Raaz to smell and taste the different aromas and flavours of our dishes. We don't want to be just another indian restaurant."
Umar has been in the catering trade for over 20 years. He has spent time and effort to transform the restaurant to the comfortable contemporary space that it is now.
Ahsan is new to the restaurant trade, and was a school friend of Umar.
'The restaurant is called "Raaz", which means secret'
Ahsan: "Umar told me of his ideas and asked if I was interested in opening a restaurant in Chesterfield. I did not hesitate and said yes, even though we're in a recession I was 100 per cent behind him. I have known him since we were kids, and lived and played in the same area, He has a drive for success and never gives up. He's always on the go with different ideas, he has travelled a lot of the world and gained experience from his travels. I just said we'll give it our best and see how it goes."
They revised the menu, and while keeping the traditional favourites you can now choose from some specialities from Kashmir, including secret family recipes, hence the name Raaz - which means "secret".
At Raaz you must try the grill food, deliciously cooked fish dishes like sea bass, halibut and haddock to name a few. There is also a huge variety of vegetarian dishes.
Your experience will allow you to appreciate the different flavours and aromas of each individual dish.