Amaranta – named after the flower that never fades – is an Indian restaurant at The Oberoi, Gurgaon. The cuisine is Indian – but in a progressive rendition. The restaurant is contemporary – bringing together timeless recipes in a transformative preparation – that make this an amazing experiential. And for those who aren’t traveling to Gurgaon anytime soon, there’s a fabulous opportunity now. The Oberoi, Bengaluru has a pop up restaurant at the Szechwan Court hosting Amaranta, with Chef Tejas Sovani from The Oberoi, Gurgaon. This is a pop up that lasts longer than convention, until end of the month, and we absolutely welcome it!
For this pop up, a set menu has been curated. I was invited by Pinky for a meal, and I am so excited to be writing this up already! Our meal started with an amuse bouche – a very interesting mix – Dhokla Pakora, with a tamarind chutney served as a jus. It had the right mix of crunch and the light softness of the tempered dhokla. The Cured Salmon Tartare was served next, with a ginger crisp on the side. The dish had generous bit of mustard cream that complemented the salmon deliciously. And the lemon gel gave that zest naturally. This was paired with the Sauvignon Blanc, The Broken Fishplate, 2015.
The next course – was a perfectly cooked poached egg at 63 degrees centigrade on a bed of spiced quail roast, in a kurma curry, served with a bread. Now, I didn’t know anything about this dish except the curious information of the poached egg’s temperature. I do not care much for quail, but this preparation was fabulous. And why is the temperature of the egg important? This very, very slow cooking technique ensures the egg is just runny when broken, yet consistent in mass. And this was perfect. And the mix of the yoke and kurma curry made this pairing just right! This dish is paired with Viognier, Grover Zampa Vijay Amritraj Reserve. A fermented plum sorbet was then served as a palate cleanser.
The main course came in two parts. First was Birbal ki Khichdi – an amazing adaptation of a quinoa cous cous and arhar dal khichdi served with an assortment of accompaniments like Lamb Galaouti, Achari Gosht, raita and rice chiwda. The second part of the main course had options of lamb loin or assortment of sea food. I opted for the latter, though did try the lamb as well. The seafood had black cod, scallop and lobster tail served in a plate, and then topped with a spicy sauce. The sauce is inspired by the Kerala Meen Curry tempered with smoked kokum. And it was served on a bed of broccoli poriyal. The dish was outstanding – the flavors and spices done perfectly!
I have to mention about the lamb too, Chef Tejas mentioned this was inspired from his days in Calcutta, and eating Kosha Mangsho. It was served on a bed of bacon and coriander fried rice! This course is paired with Cabernet Shiraz, Grover Zampa Vijay Amritraj Reserve. And finally, dessert was a gujia inspired spanakopita with a filling of beetroot halwa – on a bed of aamras foam. And that was the meal. A beautiful menu, and wonderfully executed.
The Last Word
Amarante is a highly acclaimed award-winning restaurant. And Chef Tejas has trained at Noma, a world-renowned Michelin star restaurant by Chef René Redzepi in Copenhagen, Denmark, and worked extensively in the industry specializing in various cuisines. He now leads a team of specialized chefs at Amaranta. His view is Indian food is not just all about authenticity and tradition, but in having distinctive recipes with unique and seasonal ingredients, new techniques in pairings and constant innovation. The price for this set menu starts at 1950 + taxes. Too good an opportunity to pass up on.