The moveable feast : Hyatt’s hi-originality


As far as I know, all the Hyatts have an infinite variety of choices in their All Day Dining Restaurants. The Café in Kathmandu’s Hyatt is typical. One great deal is the two tables of eye catching starters and salads and one of a plentitude of sensational desserts; stick to them, you will be full and the price is perfect. You can also choose from a multi-cuisine buffet.

Chef Keshab Ram Shrestha got us the traditional Murgh Malai Kebabs, which were marinated in tandoori spices and then in cream and cheese. The taste could bring back the Nawabs. Tender juicy, a highlight of lemon and then a flood of flavours. The dish came from the starters.

Chef Keshab did a stint in Saudi Arabia, and one in Australia where he went from Mediterranean to Continental and Indian food, and judging by the kebabs, his heart was obviously there.

Chef Keshab went wild around the Mediterranean shore line on the European side with our Greek Salad loaded with cucumber, cherry tomatoes, onions, olives and Greek Feta cheese highlighting the cheese and making us remember the ancient Greeks who used to call their children “Little cheese” as a sign of affection. You didn’t really need dressing, the feta cheese spread itself onto your taste buds. The sauce, if you desired, is pure olive oil with a mélange of tastes including garlic and herbs fresh from Hyatt’s garden. One moment crunchy, then soft with cheese, with the olives and tomatoes slightly explosive and flavourful and then a crunch of onions. Chef Keshab has taken a fairly well known dish and transformed it into Hyatt Hi.

Young Ms Manju Shrestha got us a clear soup, which tasted better for her bringing it.

Chef Vikram Ganpule joined us for this Café Signature. It’s a clear soup with noodles, spring onions and mushrooms and two types of sauces. Mix them and transform your common Thukpa into a kind of elite-ness. Said Chef Vikram, “Winter is coming and this is a hearty soup that warms you.” With the pesto sauce added, it takes you from Tibet to Italy. Simply superb. We went and sneaked a miniscule goat cheese, mushroom and tomato quiche with a kicker of red onions to make the going good and it was wonderful. Slightly sweet, slightly tart, and all together great.

The Ala Carte menu went from Hamburgers to Schnitzels to Manchurian dishes, Nepali food and Indian food.

We were served a Pomphret Fillet that swam to us awash in olives, pepper, mushrooms, tomatoes with lemon butter (a forgotten art) served on a bed of asparagus. Once more you are back to the Mediterranean and a mildly tart taste compounded by all the ingredients and a mixture of herbed flavours making for memorability.

And then along came the Pork Chop glazed with maple syrup appealing to the hog in me. It took me back to my youth where you got pork and very sweet mashed apples. Now with the glazed maple syrup, you got a similar but better taste. It is one of the famous Chef Jamie Oliver’s favourites. Juicy delicate and distinctive, our pork chop had come a long way from the old days. We ended gratefully but finally with a glorious Thai Coconut dessert, where slightly shredded coconut moistened with coconut milk and interspersed with chocolate layers was devilishly good.

We took our leave of Chef Keshab and Manju and a line from Dylan Thomas followed us home, “Do not go gentle into the good night, rage rage against the dying of such delights”.

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