“Don’t mess with a good thing“ is an aphorism we have heard plenty of times. However, its applicability doesn’t hold true in the current restaurant scenario, especially where menus are concerned. A crowd-pleasing trend of today may become inapposite in some time and with the ever-changing palate of the customer, there’s a need to revamp the menu every once in a while
The launch of Farzi’s new menu is a step forward by a restaurant keeping abreast with times. Ever since Zorawar Kalra, Founder & Managing Director, Massive Restaurants Pvt. Ltd and owner of Farzi Cafe entered the Indian culinary space he has been a force to reckon with. Consistently deciphering the sentiments of the Indian consumer and incorporating them in a menu that has a futuristic focus, he has created an illusion which amalgamates traditional global cuisine with age-old Indian influences. Rocky Mohan, the founder of Gourmet Passport and a food savant curates exclusive dinners which are the talk of the town. An author of three books, his joie de vivre and knowledge about food makes his dining invites special. So when one receives an invite hosted by both the stalwarts, Mr. Rocky Mohan and Mr. Zorawar Kalra, it can give enough reason for the heart to skip a beat. I know mine did.
The new menu
Have you seen a fashion show? On the illuminated runway, the models walk in a certain order wearing a specific outfit which is in accordance with the statement the designer wants to make about the collection. The audience tries to comprehend the idea behind the creations as well as visually deconstruct each outfit to appreciate the intricacies and the craftsmanship of every single piece. In a similar manner, the spectacular evening saw the lineup of seven starters and five mains ready to do the “catwalk” on our tables.
The buzz in the air, the heady sips of the finest liquor and the mellifluous music set the mood just right. The show began with the arrival of amuse bouche placed in a bowl with theatrical smoke emanating from all corners – wobbly bite-sized mango spheres with pistachio flakes that dissolved elegantly in one gulp in the mouth.
With hints of molecular gastronomy, the new menu is a hybrid of the staid and the bold and that is the new twist in the tale. Every dish tells a love story – of an old recipe, tied up with a new ingredient as the Farzified anda curry which uses quail eggs and not chicken eggs or the culmination of the recipes of two different cuisines merging as one. Haleem risotto is a perfect example. Who would have thought that the delicate flavors of haleem would blend beautifully with risotto and emerge in a modern avatar? But Farzi does it with finesse and serves the dish with a mutton pickle for those who want to spice it up. The use of Tellicherry pepper in the chicken tikka makes it more robust and gives it complex flavors. Served with pomegranate pachadi the dish reminded me of the woody flavors known to the Malabar Coast. The dishes have familiar tastes, but their presentation carries an element of surprise. In short, they have been “Farzified”. The contemporary twist to Kuzhi Paniyaram in the form of Paniyaram scotch eggs made me fall in love with quail eggs. If I could I would have them for breakfast too.
Every menu has stars. These are the classics that continue to shine despite the changing trends. Guntur chili chicken uses the traditional chicken recipe from the Andhra region. Made with tender chicken morsels, Guntur red chilies, and fresh ground spices, in Farzi it is served with fried curry leaves and coconut bits. The Amritsari fish drizzled with a satiny, full-bodied desi ghee hollandaise and served as a taco is better relished without its tortilla. If I could skip, jump and run for a dish to Farzi cafe it would be for the smokey New Zealand lamb chops. It was the showstopper dish for me. Lean, tender and with a subtle of earthiness, the juicy meat is best had using your hands. Shun the fancy cutlery! Simply pick it up and bite into the meat!
Do you have a sweet tooth?
If you have a sweet tooth like me, you cannot miss an opportunity to dig into the enormous lemon tart. Served as a whole, it is lightly hammered so the crust falls into uneven chunks and the silken custard cascades out mingling with the strawberry coulis that lies next to it. If craving a desi sweet, opt for a Balushahi. The ‘
The new menu at Farzi Cafe is revamped, this time without the “smokes and mirrors” presentations. It retains the Indian sensibility and flavors while experimenting with boldness. It’s taking Indian to yet another level.