London: The owner of a popular Indian eatery joint in Kent has bought an unusual vehicle to ferry his curries around the world - an Iraqi fighter jet. Rob Abdul, who owns Cafe Taj in Gravesend, Kent has started taking flying lessons.
Abdul came up with the idea with a pilot friend, has earmarked about 35,000 pounds for buying and restoring the plane, which Abdul says is needed because his food is requested from all around the world by top celebrities.
Abdul, 40, told The Reporter, a local daily: "It's a novel idea. I'm learning to fly and my pilot friend is a partner. We are really excited.
"When it is ready we will seek permission to fly it. One thing you cannot do as a businessman is disappoint your customers and I still regularly get requests from around the world, many are celebrities and you can't turn business away".
In 2006, Abdul sent a rare takeaway to Germany during the World Cup at the request of dance band 'Opposite Worlds'.
He is currently the only chef in England capable of cooking vowl, a 3ft fresh water fish only found in East Bengal, which the band requested from their luxury hotel room.
The same year he was taken to the Dartford Festival by helicopter when Lee Ryan, formerly of record breaking boy-band Blue, requested a meal for 40.
He also teamed up with an Indian restaurant in Bath called Bombay Nights and sent over a meal to the England cricket team during the Ashes.
He said: "We sent over a meal to Australia for them because they couldn't get a decent curry anywhere over there. I prepared the meal, the now famous World Cup Boal".
It was packed in special containers and seen by health inspectors before it was sent on the 8,998 mile journey.
When not in the air he says the plane, which is currently stored at Manston Airport, will be used at events such as air shows to promote Cafe Taj and give children the chance to sit inside.
More from this Section
September 5, 2015, 12:06 am IST
September 4, 2015, 11:49 pm IST
September 4, 2015, 10:19 pm IST
September 4, 2015, 9:26 pm IST