Many travelers in 'exotic' countries would love to enjoy local cuisine. However, circumstances often make this difficult. The consequence is that they either eat at their hotel (international standard kitchen) or visit the local McDonald's - which is not bad, but we can do better.
The idea is to help
local cooks - preferrably poor people with knowledge about traditional food - create a restaurant that conforms to basic international standards, but that is totally local.
Tourists who visit less explored regions could thus always enjoy a nice meal based on local cuisine; the 'brand' we're building is very recognizable.
We would proceed as follows:
1. we visit a touristy place in, say, Ethiopia or Vietnam.
2. we have a competition amongst the local poor (most often women), to see who presents the most interesting dishes.
3. once we have selected a candidate, we do the following:
3.1. we teach the cook and restaurant staff English, so they can communicate with tourists (this is not too costly, but it can make a big difference)
3.2. we help the chef create perfect menus; her/his input is of course crucial, but we also consult with international chefs to get their advice on interesting dishes; we also teach the local cook some very basic rules about modern restaurants
3.3. after this education (which is an investment on our part), we help set up the restaurant proper.
I'm thinking of using hip, designer, small pre-fab homes, which we convert to restaurants.
This makes our brand recognizable, even though such nice prefabs are not that expensive. [see link for an overview of nice designs].
The restaurants can be located on a website, where daily menus are posted, so tourists can see what's on offer.
Of course, tasting the real stuff in the real environments (e.g. a street food stall) is far more exciting, but for many travelers, an "in-between" option like the one proposed here, might be attractive too. It might offer some comfort in difficult travel circumstances.
Traditional, local food, placed in a modern, hygienic, hip and safe context. It's a matter of 'upgrading' local skills and knowledge, and creating more value with them.
P.S. our restaurants always have a supply of fresh Belgian beer (besides local specialty drinks).