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    Hyatt Regency’s new Italian chef whips up a colourful spreadat Focaccia, with grills, pizzas and more

    HYATT10GIVEN our blistering summer, it make sense not to restrict ‘brunch’ to Sundays. The requisite trip to London or Coonoor may or may not happen, but you cannot squash the holiday spirit or the need for a laidback lazy afternoon. Under the watchful eye of the young and mild-mannered Roberto Zorzoli, the menu at Focaccia has had many changes for the better. The pizzas remain, but the chef from Milan introduces us to his version of Italian from the South. There are salads, dips and a quiche or two, but Zorzoli has been able to steer around the typical menu, with his pasta. Handmade, naturally, the selection includes a fine-textured gnocchi in gorgonzola, while the thyme risotto is light and elegant. From the grills, the tender lamb chop in sour cherry shines, as do the vegetables. For those with children, easy meals like grilled chicken with fresh juice take the guess work out of an afternoon best spent on other weighty issues. Like dessert. Zorzoli’s special is the chocolate salami which, despite its name, is easy to like. It is a slice of chocolate wrapped around biscotti, and may soon slip past the ever present tiramisu in the popularity charts. Other sweet nothings include mille feuille with berry or cherry compote and panacotta with biscotti. To help things along, there is bubbly and wine. A splash of the former, a standard brunch drink, may nudge you in the direction of the pool – for an additional `500, the meal includes a refreshing dip. A weekend brunch should celebrate the season, and Zorzoli has made provisions for new items under appetisers and desserts. Now if only he could manage to squeeze his spread into every day in May!

    The brunch is priced at Rs. 1,399 plus tax, Rs. 1,699 (with alcohol) and is from 12 pm to 3 pm. Rs. 500 for pool access. Details: 61001234

    — Rosella Stephen

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