Meanwhile, the team at Di An Di pivots to a fast-casual Viet-Cajun concept primed for takeout and delivery. Di Di, which means “To Go,” launches with a “secret menu” on Instagram alongside some of the traditional Di An Di offerings.
As restaurants cycle through various offerings and opening times to find a profitable sweet spot, Instagram becomes a lifeline and a de facto menu for countless spots. Catering to the inherently visual medium, the Di An Di team invests in fancy packaging. The restaurant had spent $5,000 on disposable paper and plastic goods during the entirety of 2019, when it was dine-in only. With Di Di, it regularly spends between $1,000 and $4,000 a week on packaging and accoutrements. “We aren’t a cheap place, so if the customer is paying a lot, then we want them to be wowed,” says head chef Dennis Ngo. “We want the packaging to reflect the Di An Di experience.”