Intoxicating Indian flavours


In aankhon ke masti ke Mastane hajaron hai

A well-known Bollywood song rents the air and everyone enjoys the mujra. The place, the ambience, wafting aromas of delicious Indian delicacies — everything looked like a page out of some history book on Nawabs and their flamboyant lifestyle. But it was not a scene from some haveli of some nawab, but from the ongoing Indian cuisine festival — Flavours of the Indian Cuisine — at the Far Pavilion Restaurant, The Everest Hotel. The festival, from March 19-28, is open only for dinner.

Ever since well-known Chef Ajay Pathak joined the hotel as their Executive, he has been making a number of changes in the various restaurants of the hotel.

“Making a change is never easy. People want something different, but change in taste has to be something they are familiar with. I went for an extreme market survey to know about the changing trends,” says Chef Pathak.

After realising that most of the restaurants here serve very rich and heavy food, he zeroed in on dishes that are healthy, have a home cooked taste but at the same time are exotic as well. “We have Chef Gopal Singh, who has years of experience in Indian cuisine, to look after our kitchen,” he adds.

The new menu, designed especially for the festival, covers the whole of India and has dishes from the undivided Punjab of yesteryears. From Parsi, Mangalorean to Goan, they have dishes from everywhere. After the festival, the most popular dishes will be added to the regular menu. To bring about a change even in the décor and ambience,

the whole restaurant has been redone. The blue theme works well for the mood and the eyes, while the various Indian wall hangings, artefacts and bandhini dupattas draped beautifully add charm to the whole ambience.

While the delicious smell of saffron and cumin heighten your appetite, as you sit down to relish the delicacies, you just can’t decide where to start. Gilawati kebab prepared from lamb mince using various traditional spices and dash of saffron just melts in your mouth leaving a sharp and tangy taste. For vegetarians, you can choose the same dish but prepared with rajma (red kidney beans). They have an equal number of dishes in both veg and non-veg categories.

For those who can’t have enough of meat items, don’t forget to try the jugal bandi (fusion) of traditional Hydrabadi resham kebab and Lucknowi seekh. One starter that actually surprised many was the Dahi ke kebab prepared using hung curd, mixed with various spices and wrapped in bread — it was delightful to bite into.

If you don’t want anything too heavy for starters, just move to their shorba (soup) and try the appetising tomato shorba.

For the main course, do try their Jhinga peri peri, a Goan dish that originated in Portugal. For vegetarians, the Coondapuri mushroom curry is to die for. Among breads, one that should not be missed is Zattar naan, which is prepared using Arabic spices brought from Delhi.

And for your sweet tooth, they have a very exotic Gulab ka kheer with rose and saffron flavour and Qubani shahi tukra with sugar syrup soaked bread topped with apricot puree and condensed milk. A real treat for those who cannot have enough of Indian sweets.