|Restaurant Week Kolkata 2015|
I have a special soft corner for La Cucina at Hyatt Regency, Kolkata, possibly because it is one of those places where I had one of the most memorable meals of my life. So, when I was invited by the beautiful J to sample some of the items from the menu for the Restaurant Week, 2015, specially curated by Chef Sumeet Priyadarshi, I was quite excited, and made V tag along with me. La Cucina has a cosy lounge segment, where you can relax while your table is set up, and I talked to the Chef about the menu.
|Chef Sumeet Priyadarshi, Hyatt Regency Kolkata|
“We decided to showcase some of our signature items off the a-la-carte menu. Which is why, you would be served full-sized portions of our house favourites during the restaurant week. From Salmon to Lamb, we have a special selection of the best items off the menu.” Chef Sumeet, who is manning the kitchen for quite some time, had met me last year, and we were happily chatting about the food while our table was readied.
|bread basket at Hyatt Regency, Kolkata|
I am fan of the breads available at Hyatt, and the beautiful moist baguette, with a crisp crust, never fails to make me happy. Served with a pat of herb-infused butter, the warm baguette slices were rapidly consumed after smearing them well with the soft butter, laden with crushed basil, while the smiling server took our orders. The bread dough is made with a culture which has been imported, and therefore, the taste is quite distinct and nice.
V had selected the classic – the Caprese – with slices of Bocconcini, tomatoes, and a dab of pesto and balsamic reduction, drizzled with fragrant extra virgin olive oil. I was in love with the cheese – it was so fresh and luscious! I am not a fan of tomatoes, or V would have had some trouble holding on to his plate.
|Asparagus Soup with Marscapone|
J was all for the Asparagus Soup with Marscapone, which is simple, comforting, and with a touch of pepper, brightens up wonderfully. A dollop of marcapone cheese adds the much-needed tang which adds to the flavour, and this would easily be something I would want to have with a few slices of the baguette.
|Fish and Seafood Fritters|
However, my platter of seafood and fish fritters, the Frittura di Gamberi, Branzino ed Anelli di Calamari, was a stunner. Batons of Bhetki, asparagus spears, mushroom caps, squid, were all batter fried and served with a wedge of lemon and some saffron mayonnaise which was delectable. The fish was moist, tender, and (dare I use the term?) buttery. The squid was perfectly cooked, and the added bonus of dunking them in the sweet and sour mayonnaise was what made me and J return to our platter, until nothing remained.
For our mains, V had asked for the Della Casa pizza, because he quite loves the pizzas here. The pizza has a slightly thicker crust than I remembered, and it had a generous amount of topping, including pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, and jalapeño. The portion size is quite large, and V struggles with the last slice. It is nice, but not remarkable, so I leave it mostly alone (I might have stolen a slice. But I am not admitting to anything).
|pizza della casa|
On the other hand, J continues with her asparagus fest, and orders an Asparagus Risotto, which looks quite innocent, but is quite heavy, with a bit of tang from the twist of citrus, topped with fine shards of Parmesan cheese. I am, meanwhile, looking forward to my main – the Lamb Shanks.
|white and green asparagus risotto|
As the choices were many, I was torn between a few dishes, but then, Chef Sumeet suggested the Braised Lamb Shanks and I was sold. The shanks were served with roasted vegetables, piquant olives, and cherry tomatoes, and the meat was… in one word… beautiful. The texture was perfect – the meat adhered to the bone, but fell apart at the touch of the fork – a treat for those who love red meat. The accompanying vegetables were quickly dispatched with before I attacked the meat.
|braised lamb shank|
We had a difficult time deciding on the dessert – but finally, we ended up choosing the Chocolate Bomb and the Melting Chocolate Tart, served with vanilla ice cream. I was eyeing the Tiramisu, but ended up not choosing it, because it somehow did not call to me. Which is strange, but true.
|Melting Chocolate Tart|
The Melting Chocolate Tart was more like a chocolate fondant with a mildly sweet innard, and the ice cream came with thin slices of almonds which was wonderful too. But, I was looking forward to the Chocolate Bomb, which was presented on the table with a bit of drama.
A chocolate sphere was put in front of the diner. Then, a hot chocolate sauce was poured on it, at a steady stream, till the chocolate melted and the ice cream could be seen.
|chocolate bomb kolkata|
The result was a scoop of vanilla ice cream, set on a bed of tangy raspberry coulis, and creamy vanilla ice cream. I might have stolen V’s dessert, claimed it my own, and demolished it, one gleeful spoon at a time.
|best chocolate dessert kolkata|
The restaurant week in Kolkata is on till next Sunday, and you would have to reserve your table before you go. To book, simply go to the Restaurant week website, log in, and book your table.
Disclaimer: Poorna Banerjee dined at Hyatt Regency at the kind invitation of the management.