Friday, 25 March 2016

Pan Asian, ITC Grand Chola, Guindy, Chennai

09:12:00

I have been a big FAN of the food at Pan Asian. Yes Yes! I have not made post about it on my blog. But the restaurant had made me rethink the Asian style of food. Gone was the simple noodles, rice and sides. All thanks to the brilliant Chef Vikramjit. Having had two renditions with Chef where he set the bar really high for Asian fare my idea of having a simple asian meal was lost.

Yes! I know I would have loved it if Chef Vikramjit had stayed back in Pan Asian, but now that he has moved to Tian at ITC Maurya to much grander stage, Chennai was left with void which needed to be filled. Vola! ITC brings in Chef Ashish Singh to fill the space.

So I was invited to a Chef's table along with the bunch of other foodies from Chennai to pick Chef Ashish's brain over a delicious Sunday Brunch.

Food:
The brunch started off with a Fantastic Sashimi served on Bed of Ice accompanied by Salmon and Sea Urchin garnished with Shisho Leaf and Hanaho and the piece of resistance - Fresh Wasabi! There was many firsts for me with respect to this dish - Sea Urchin & seeing a freshly grated Wasabi. Sea Urchin - Big Fan!


Next to be served was the Sichuan Style Crispy John Dory. I did a small google search on the Mr. John Dory. Pictures depicted a grumpy lil fish. I wonder how a grumpy bugger became a tasty lil sucker.




Next was another first for me a Scallop and Salmon with a bit of Roe. It was an another stunner. In between all this I was served a Green Tea - Iced Matcha which was quite brilliant.



Next was Robatayaki in two forms. Veg was made with char grilled Avocado - simply brilliant. Not been a big fan a Avocado but in this form I did love it. Non-veg, the Char Grilled Black Cod was sensational.


Up next was a beautifully caramelised Duck wrapped in Nama Uba paper. Some foodies did not seem to agree with me. But I loved it. The duck was followed by a Lamb chop served with the cigar style Vanilla puff pastry. The Puff pastry was fantastic, the lamb was tender but I did not quite like the muttony taste which accompanied it.


Final dish part of the appetiser was the Tuna Sushi & Prawn Sushi both excellent and was mouthwatering plus eye watering with the wasabi.

After finishing the many courses of Appetizers I was nearly stuffed, and also I had to head back to work. So I began to inhale the mains rather than enjoying it.  For mains we were served with a bento box of sorts. I loved the Jasmine Rice served along with the yellow curry sea bass and the Wok tossed Lamb. The noodles which came with the lamb was a tad bit dry. I skipped the desserts as I headed back to work.

Overall the meal felt different with platting & presentation taking the centre stage and the antics pushed to the back burner. Looks like Pan Asian is in safe hands.

Ambiance:
It is not your regular chinese restaurant fare. Rather a contemporary mix of wood and fine lighting to go with the kind of gastronomical journey which we undergo with the meal.

Price:
This sit down Sunday brunch costs Rs 3300/-  per head.

Disclaimer : Invited Review

Pan Asian is located inside ITC Grand Chola in Guindy.

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.


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Saturday, 12 March 2016

Fully Local, R.K. Salai, Chennai

09:43:00

Chennai is seeing a sudden influx of alternative North Indian Cuisine restaurants. Well, this is the second of that kind and it is called Fully Local. I had this itch to try this joint ever since it had opened up. Also now that I had tried Batlivala, I wanted to know how this weighs up against it.




Food:
Had a early lunch with Mom after finishing up some work. As my mom does not have a big appetite, we just ordered a starter and a main each. We were served with a complimentary Nanari Sarbath drink which was quite refreshing. I have had Vada Pav's in most big joint restaurant and have been disappointed. So this Vada Pav was a welcome change. It had a nice butter toasted bun with crispy potato which was simply amazing. It was served along with Chilli Bhaji. A word of caution the chilli is not deseeded so it was quite spicy. Thankfully we had ordered the Red Velvet Cream Cheese which really soothed tongues.





For the mains, my mom had the Chicken Biryani while I had the Butter Chicken with Laacha Paratha. Chicken biryani was aromatic with saffron smell and was quite yummy. Also loaded to the brim with Chicken pieces. My Butter Chicken Masala with Laacha Paratha was quite decent and went well with the curd.

Ambiance:
Simple utilitarian decor which works

Service:
We were the only people in the restaurant. Considering it, the service was quite slow.

Price:
This meal for two cost us Rs 1058/-

Food - 7.5/10
Ambiance - 7.5/10
Service - 6.5/10
Price - 7/10

PS : Photos were shot using Samsung S6

Fully Local is located on R.K. Salai next to Bharat Petroleum Bunk in the building which used to house 50 BUCKS

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.


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Thursday, 10 March 2016

Special Chocolate Sunday Brunch @ Flying Elephant, Park Hyatt, Velachery, Chennai

08:55:00

Nothing puts a smile on my face on a Sunday morning than a fantastic full spread Brunch. But that smile was made even bigger by the absolutely lip-smacking chocolate infused dishes at the Flying Elephant. Yes, I am talking about the simply mesmerising Special Chocolate Brunch at Flying Elephant. I really don't have words to explain the feeling of elation which I had at the end of the meal. As the breakfast at the Dining Room at Park Hyatt was spectacular, this takes it a notch higher.




Food:
The Sunday Brunch at Flying Elephant has always been special. I would go on to say, that it is the best brunch in the city at its price point. When something is already really good, the room to improve it further is really not necessary. But that was not the case here. Park Hyatt has taken the already excellent brunch and made it outstanding. But how? Simply decided to run an experimental fusion menu. I bet finding a person who hates the Chocolate flavour or Chocolate as such, is quite hard. Why not throw that into the dishes. Try a twist. Wolaaa!!! You get the Special Brunch.




Bring special Chocolates from all across the globe, play with the local fresh ingredients Badabing! BadaBoom!!! This lands you with Chocolate Paneer Tikka, Chocolate Risotto, Chocolate Chicken Pizza just to name a few.







There was this fear in my mind that the chocolate flavour will be overpowering, thus killing the essence of Indian dishes. But I must say the chefs have played with Chocolate in a very different manner. It's as if the chocolate is there, but then it's not there. It was very mild, more like an after taste which was brilliant.











One of the dishes which is etched in my mind is the Chocolate Cake with Sea Salt. Deconstructing the dish - Chocolate cake with nice grains of sea salt followed by mascapone followed by a chocolate biscuit. Now when you bite into it, you land up with the Sweet chocolate first followed by the lovely mascapone and finally the Salt which balances out the sweetness. It was simply decadent. Mind boggling to think about the way it was constructed. All in all it was a fantastic meal. I would totally recommend this brunch for its uniqueness

I must appreciate Park Hyatt for willing to try out such a daring menu and pulling it off. This special brunch was brought about by Park Hyatt along with Nitin of Chocotrait. Kudos to you guys.

Ambiance:
The ambiance here is simply stunning as always.

Price:
Non-alcoholic brunch: INR 2,295 + taxes
Alcoholic brunch: INR 3,295 + taxes
Champagne brunch: INR 7,295 + taxes



Disclaimer : Invited review

Park Hyatt is located on the entrance of Velachery High Road on Guindy.

If you like what you are reading, Please share it with others.

*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.


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Monday, 7 March 2016

Batlivala & Khanabhoy, Alwarpet, Chennai

09:49:00


I was at Batlivala & Khanabhoy recently, the latest entrant into Chennai's ever growing food scene. Yes! the restaurant adds another feather to Chennai's Hat - A standalone Parsi restaurant. This is a type of food I have never had. So I was really curious to find out what actually constituted Parsi Cuisine.




Food
Since it was just Mr. Food in Chennai and myself, both voracious eaters we went about ordering stuff at random. We started the proceedings with Lollypop Na Farcha which was crispy batter fried chicken. This was followed by Kheema Kebabs - juicy succulent kheema balls served with pieces of lime was simply sensational.



Moving forward we had the Kheema Pav, which was essentially Pav Bhaji in which the vegetable masala is replaced with lip-smacking Kheema masala. An absolute must have. I loved it so much that I contemplated whipping it up at home. Next up we had Chicken Maivala. This dish had me confused. It was a mix of dried fruits and bechamel sauce. I am not able to state if I had liked the dish or not. Maybe it is more of an acquired taste.



We finished our meal with Kopra Pak Shots and Santra Na Kheer. Kopra Pak Shots was a rich coconut milk with heavy loads of ghee and rose flavouring served in a fancy looking chai vaala shot glass, while the Santra Na Kheer was rich Kheer with orange beads. Both heavenly in their own rights.

Ambiance:
Simple decor dominated by a couple of fine rustic name boards.

Service:
Service was kind of slow, but the attention to detail was simply fantastic. The way the food was served was the best I have experienced so far.

Price:
This meal cost us Rs 1500 /-

Food - 8/10
Ambiance - 7/10
Service - 10/10
Price - 8/10

PS: The photos were shot using Samsung S6

Disclaimer : I paid for the meal.

Batlivala & Khanabhoy is located in Maharaj Surya Road which is the same road as Tangerine.

If you like what you are reading, Please share it with others.

*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.


**Want instant reviews follow me on Instagram!!