She’s been there since the foundation was laid and one can fittingly affirm she’s the czar of spices – with her hands swathed in them and her dishes oozing the right balance, Chef Veena Arora will rivet you with her spices. At the Spice Route, Imperial Hotel, you’d traverse boundaries contentedly from Malabar Coast in Kerala through Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Indonesia to Thailand and Vietnam. The restaurant is a work of art in every aspect – be it the visual setting that has a religious, cultural milieu or the food that emboides the authentic flavors of the Orient.
At the restaurant, that sits as the folk architectural marvel in a quiet corner of the otherwise Victorian and colonial styled hotel, I was congenially greeted by Ruchi Jain, PR Manager at the hotel who was brimming gorgeous in her mustard silk saree, keeping in accord with the thematic restaurant.
I was here to taste the WINTER COLLECTION MENU – the signature globally acclaimed menu by the gregarious Chef featuring delicate flavours of King Prawns, Squids, Lobsters and hand-picked variety of fish. You’d love her if you once share the table with her – her warm smile, salt & pepper hair and loquacious demeanor is addictive. At this comfortably warm and controlled table, we savored an eclectic mix of see-food recipes from the South-East Asian kitchen carefully put together by the Chef herself to bask in some winter sun.
We began with Year Arvant Anjj – stir fried tiger prawns in ginger, chillies and Kerela spices. It was my favorite Anti-pasto – the prawns were an ideal blend of chillies and succulence. It’s a take from the classic Chicken 65 – though Chef has given it her own twist with prawns and Kerala zing.
The Yum Thalay – spicy seafood salad with Tom Yum paste, lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves – one can only envisage that it’d be a burst of flavors in one’s mouth and exactly that was the case. It’s a piquant hot salad for those who like to take pleasure in a hot afternoon however keep it healthy, in chorus.
For those who enjoy the South Indian tang, do try the sea food Meen Rassam tempered with Kerala spices.
What followed next was the most divine and a dish that has my heart (thinking of which I’m salivating).
The Kadugu Meen Masala – Kadugi is sole fillet stir fried in mustard paste and bishop’s weed garnished with cilantro leaves – the mustard was perfect – the weed cut through the pungency terrifically. What a dish! Eat it with plain rice if you want the flavors of this delicacy to come through.
Rendang Udang – Malay styled prawns cooked in rich coconut milk, roasted coconut and lemongrass – the rich consistency of the gravy was luscious and the coconut just added to it.
The menu also features the delicious, melt in the mouth lobsters in oyster sauce- Kung Nang Phad Saparos and Phad Khing Pla – sole with black fungus, celery stems and leaves will make your winters an affair to remember.
The hand- crafted specialties create an extremely palatable and delightful dining experience for sea food lovers and keeping winters in mind, it’s been made wholesome. Stir your senses with this sumptuous meal at the ongoing Winter Collection Sea-food Menu
From the 15th November 2016 – 31st January 2017
At The Spice Route, The Imperial, New Delhi
For Lunch & Dinner: 12:30pm – 2:45pm | 7:00pm – 11:45pm
Meal for Two without alcohol: INR 10000 plus taxes
Call at 41116605 for reservation