Sunday, January 22, 2017
A CULINARY SYMPHONY AT AMARANTA@THE OBEROI GURGAON
There’s plenty of culinary drama, thanks to Chef Vivek Singh of The Cinnamon club London Fame and Chef Tejas Sovani who diligently style every dish to grades that would make Jennifer Lopez insecure. The food is almost astonishingly exotic, gathered from regional India. I begin my culinary sojourn with a dish called ‘Dhokla Ya Pakoda’; yes an interesting mix of fried and steamed gram flour, twanging with the gorgeous flavour of tamarind and mint. Chef Vivek’s strength is his decisive pairing of unexpected ingredients, which works best with simple dishes.
So the pressed watermelon crusted with amaranth seeds, date chutney and masala cashewnut is spectacular. A cheer to the fact that they’re being quite fixated about ingredients, every dish has a distinguishing flavour, which is quite an indulgence in these days of ‘one seasoning fits all.’ The highlights are the Pithod and vegetable galouti, with a nice soft and crisp mouth feel in a bite. Also the spicy grilled eggplants with thick salan redolent with sesame peanut crumble, rich and tangy, teamed with labneh and toasted buckwheat.
By the time I hit the entrée, I am on a food high; the confit of king Mushroom, designed to go beautifully with a curried coconut sauce; the green and black gram is crisp, yet moisty and the mushroom, firm and juicy…decadence indeed! The star of the afternoon, however, is the Mumbai to Jaipur Pink Express, featuring subtly spiced Dabeli, missal, Ker Sangri, Pyaaz papad ki subzi and Kurkuri Bhindi…neat and satisfying. Despite protests on being literally ‘FED UP’, I manage dessert; carrot fudge served with a clove ice cream.
Interestingly, Chef Vivek and Chef Tejas have made the crossover from desi cliché to clever global, drawing locals and expats alike. Perhaps thanks to its nifty presentation and perfect balance. This restaurant will work for you if you like ostentatious gastronomic capers, bold pairing and brazen Opulence.
Amaranta is on Level 3 @ the Oberoi Gurgaon, 443, Udyog Vihar, Phase V, Gurgaon
This Live Performance is on only until tonight…i.e. 22nd January 2017
For a Chef’s table experience, please call Mallika Dasgupta at +919582944202
On offer are a Vegetarian and Non Vegetarian tasting menus, I went in for the former