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Am a contradiction of sorts. i love going out and having a good time with friends, and i can also stay home chill out over a book or a movie.. Am very passionate about writing, so give me a topic and watch me float away into wonderland... I Am crazy about music,books,friends and my doggie... :)

Friday, March 23, 2018

Copper Chimney in Phoenix Market City, Velachery, chennai

 Strawberry chai based drink..

 Kadak Rumali roti

 Hung Yoghurt tikkis 

 Tawa Imli Aloo


 The menu... 

Achari mushroom 

 Paneer Tikka Chelo - basically rice cooked in butter & thick cream served with few pieces of tandoor paneer slices. 

Black Daal, Paneer Masala & a chicken gravy with a boiled egg on top [ordered by friend]

 Rumali roti [wheat flour based]

 Almond Phirni chikki crumble- Chilled rice pudding with crunchy chikki and slivers of almonds & strawberries on top

When a restaurant that you have been visiting for years opens a new outlet in the city, it is time to check it out, right?  Am talking about Copper Chimney... It also coincides with their 25th year in Chennai, quite apt that they open their  next outlet and that too at the newest most popular address in town- Phoenix Market City, Velachery on the 2nd floor.

Mumbai welcomed the first Copper Chimney in 1972. Founded by J K Kapur, 45 years back, Copper Chimney's 1st outlet was in Worli. I was told one of their Ustad's  [master chefs] has been with them for 44 years in this Mumbai outlet!! 

The Velachery venue is elegant and contemporary with wooden dado, tiled pattern flooring in patches and textured walls. Copper accents are juxtaposed against fresh wood tones and earthy cane, with bursts of colour and foliage, to create a warm, inviting vibe. Loved the open space, and natural light streaming in through the thick wall to wall glass windows. Theres even a little corner showcasing unique spice blends and artisanal pickles for sale, coming soon.

The first step in and you cant not notice the legacy stories on the wall and the giant copper bells installation. The absolute highlight of the restaurant interior is the very active live kitchen wherein the customers can enjoy the view of the food being prepared fresh in the kitchen.

The menu is extensive, the menu card is more of a magazine, with photographs of Ustads, cooking process and ofcourse the dishes as well. Each dish contains a little mention of the region from where inspiration was drawn.  

Their drinks menu includes some familiar flavours such as  Delhi Shikanji, Khatta Jaljeera and Lemon Chai Sherbet. Guests can unwind with classic mocktails, Indian inspired sherbets and fresh juices, to enjoy with their starter plates or grills after work or on the weekends. CopperChimney now offers a select range of high quality teas sourced from the finest sustainable estates across the country. The teas can be paired with our starter plates or be a perfect conclusion to a meal.

When it comes to food, the Tandoors are fired at first light, grills marinated for over eight hours and the signature dal is slow-cooked to perfection. Central to this process are the "Ustads or master chefs of Copper Chimney. These chefs are trained and nurtured for decades, gaining in-depth knowledge of ingredients, cooking styles and recipes handed down over generations.

The menu at the Velachery space features recipes that celebrate cuisines from Peshawar to Delhi. The Starter Plates and Grills are must-tries; Choose from the Tawa Imli Aloo, a North India street favourite, Chargrilled Cheese Mushrooms, a light and fresh Tandoori Chicken Salad and some Delhi-Style Fried Chicken.

The dessert menu offers quite the eclectic variety; like the interesting Almond Phirni Chikki Crumble – a chilled rice pudding topped with crunchy jaggery nut squares that we tried, or the exceptional Muzaffar - thick Lucknowi rabdi with golden, roasted vermicelli.

What was even more exciting was to see the place pack up for a weekday lunch within days of being open!! Shows how good their food is.. 

A meal for two should work out to about Rs1200 [excl taxes]... The restaurant is open for both lunch & dinner.. 

Disclaimer: The reviews posted on this blog are based on my personal experience. Also remember these were just my views!! Remember, no two palates are the same. Bon Appétit :-)

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Aroy Mak Mak at Benjarong

When the Chef pings you inviting you over to check out the new addition to the menu , you dont say No.. Especially not when it is Chef Ramkumar of Benjarong [Oriental Cuisines]. I love their food and I cannot say it enough. 

Have lost track of the number of times I have visited the restaurant, introduced friends to the amazing food or recommended the place to others visiting the city/ love Thai food. This time around, I was to savour the Salad, Steam and Grill Menu - Aroy Mak Mak as it is called. Even though their regular menu has plenty of salads and steamed items, this is a menu exclusively for those who wish to only these dishes. Going healthy, eating light- call it whatever you wish, but the food is divine!! 

The dishes I tried were all vegetarian, and many were made with Tofu.. The one stand out dish was a brinjal grilled dish that I couldn't stop going back for... Chef shared that it was cooked on a satay grill with minimal spices and served with the spicy Sriracha sauce... During the course of the conversation, we spoke about Thai curry being so versatile, and how it used Thai Brinjal, which is our South Indian Sundakka.. He also spoke about a dip/chutney of sorts made with this bitter Thai brinjal, and how he was keen to know the response when served here in Chennai..  Among other things, we discussed food across countries, how spices and vegetables were used across dishes, mind set of people when it comes to trying new dishes and ofcourse Benjarong's constant journey to discovering new flavours while keeping the traditional cooking/taste intact. The meal began with a glass of Vietnamese cold coffee and ended with the familiar flavours of Tub Tim Krob [Red rubies in coconut milk...]


 Makeau Yang- Brinjal Marinated with roasted chilli and grilled..

Tohu Yang - Spicy tofu satay in coriander root & fresh red chilly marinade

    Larb bed tohu- assorted mushrooms and tofu served in spicy chilli dressing with mint & peanuts 

   Yum bed hoo noo - black fungus, cucumber, celery, carrots topped with sesame seeds

Main Dishes
     Sweet & sour veg .

 Steamed Tofu topped with sauteed veggie served with the sauce from the sautee... 

   Vermicelli tossed with spring onions 

 Thai green curry rice

Address: Benjarong 146 TTK Road, Chennai [Opp Sketchers & Royal enterprises showroom] For reservations for the Festival can be made at 24322640.
Disclaimer: The reviews posted on this blog are based on my personal experience. Also remember these were just my views!! Remember, no two palates are the same. Bon Appétit :-)

Saturday, March 10, 2018

‘Taste of Italy’, by Chef Andrea Spurio at Hilton, Chennai

‘Taste of Italy’, by Chef Andrea Spurio from Hiton Molino Stucky Venice, where he will be presenting his favourites and signatures for Chennai. When an invite opens like that, it does pique my curiosity.. And so off I headed to Hilton to experience the menu put together. 

In the city for the first time, Chef Andrea has flown down from Hilton Molino Stucky Venice.  With his background and experience, he was here to kick off the Taste of Italy fest, introducing new flavours and dishes from the region around Italy. The evening kicked off with a Bruschetta Mista- a platter with three different toppings- fresh tomato basil, mushrooms and roasted peppers. Now that our appetite had been aroused, it was time to move on to the next dish which was the Caprese con Burrata - ripe tomatoes, burrata cheese with basil pesto and white balsamic vinaigrette. Oh my oh my, this was sinful. The cheese was heavenly. 

The dishes kept coming, and I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of Mushrooms used in them. I was sure I was in some kind of heaven!! :-) 

I got to sample the orecchiette pasta tossed in smooth mushroom sauce along with slices of the fungi. This was the first time I was trying this pasta, it was like a tiny saucer and carried the mushroom flavour all the way. I did sneak in a spoonful of the Risotto [which had scampi in it, but I took just the rice and the lime flavour came through so beautifully]. 

Up and onwards to the main course we went... The veg option was simple but it stood out. Pomodoro confit con ricotta aromatizzata al miele e menta- now that is quite a tongue twister right? What it translated to was it was Tomato confit stuffed with cottage cheese and flavoured with honey & mint. That is it.. Sounds too simple? Well, you had to cut into it, and take a bite to know it packed quite a punch. The tomato was soft yet had a bite, the cheese honey and mint were perfect combo. 

And what would an Italian meal be without dessert. We had not one, but two.. One was Tiramisu that had strong coffee flavour with every bite and the other was Saffron Panacottta that was interesting [ not really my thing cos am not a fan of saffron]... During the course of the evening, while chatting with the Chef, we came to know they made the lady finger for the Tiramisu , he went on to tell us about how they have a concept similar to the Tapas of Spain.  He also told us of this island Burrano,an island near Venice where the houses were all different colours and the lady finger biscuits were made with coconut. 

This a la carte menu is available till March 20 [lunch and dinner], priced at Rs 4,500 (+ taxes) approximately, for a meal for two...

Address: 124/1, Jawaharlal Nehru Road, Guindy, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600032
Phone044 2225 5555

Disclaimer: The reviews posted on this blog are based on my personal experience. Also remember these were just my views!! Remember, no two palates are the same. Bon Appétit :-)