Home Archives 2014 December

Monthly Archives: December 2014

    0 101

    In harmony
    What better way to kick off the weekend than with a rousing musical performance. Carnatic vocalist, Sanjay Subrahmanyan, is performing today at The Music Academy. He will be accompanied by S Varadarajan (violin), Neyveli B Venkatesh (mridangam) and S Venkataramanan (kanjira). From 7 pm to 9.30 pm. Details: 28112231

    Snip cult 2Beat of drums
    Before the dances start, lose yourself in the harmony of sound with a performance by vocalist Mahadevan Sankaranarayanan and mridangist Palghat A M Hari Narayanan. Narayanan, who is training under Dr T K Moorthy, is a master of various styles, including the Tanjore baani. Today, at 10.30 am, Bharath Kalachar, T Nagar. Details: 28343045

    Snip cult 3Rural connect
    As part of the Margazhi season, DakshinaChitra is organising the Village Heritage Festival. Catch Salangai Oli, a troupe from Thanjavur, headed by John Peter, performing traditional dances like kolattam, thappattam, kummiattam and oyilattam. A riot of colour, music and movement, it is on till December 29, from 10 am to 6 pm, at Muttukadu. Details: 24462435

      0 92

      The first edition of Sensorium Festival promises a small but serious showcase

      Erykah-Badu Credit: Farrokh ChothiaA casual conversation over drinks planted the seed for Sensorium, a new arts festival that debuted on December 6 in Goa. Curated by novelist Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi and Prashant Panjiar, founder of the Delhi Photo Festival, it is a small but serious event that explores the intersection of photography, literature, fine art, architecture, cinema and history. a�?This is a place where artists come together to create original work. Unlike most festivals, where guests coast on opinion, here theya��ve all made new and beautiful work,a�? begins Shanghvi.
      FG_01At the festivala��being conducted at the Sunaparanta Goa Centre for the Arts, in Panjima�� photography has been used as the point of confluence. Panjiar explains that instead of organising a regular photo festival, they wanted to a�?enlarge the canvas and focus on the documentation of different forms of art through the lens.a�?
      FG_04Spread over two months, the highlights include writer William Dalrymple speaking about his relative Julia Margaret Cameron, an influential 17th century photographer; Ritesh Batra, the director of The Lunchbox, presenting a digital photo show of dabbawallah; and Italian photographer Fausto Giacconea��s evocative tribute to author Gabriel Garcia Marquez. a�?I also love Farookh Chothiaa��s Jazz photographs, with an introduction by Salman Rushdiea��the unseen images are lyrical; (scriptwriter) Sooni Taraporevalaa��s photo stills from Salaam Bombay, which she has combined with her original screenplay, giving me another way to think about photography; and Sohrub Huraa��s deeply moving pictures of his mothera��ita��s my favorite novel of the season, writ large in pictures,a�? admits Shanghvi, adding that if there is another edition, he would like to explore music and politics.
      Till February 5. Details: sgcfa.org/sensorium.php

        0 129

        Jagannatha, an exhibition of Pattachitra art curated by Suguna Swamy, aims to popularise the craft

        The art of Pattachitra is not new to us. But in truth, much of what wea��ve seen till date are hacks according to Suguna Swamy, former creative director of O&M and a volunteer with the Crafts Council of India (CCI). In a bid to support the Odisha-based scroll painting art, she is organising Jagannatha, an exhibition featuring works by 13 artistsa��many of whom are National Award and Lalit Kala Akademi Award winners. a�?CCI has done quite a bit of worka��supported artists and sent them abroad for showsa��but ita��s still few and far in between,a�? begins Swamy, explaining that there is a sense of disillusionment among them. a�?So we thought wea��d work with some of them, get them to do patas exclusively for us, and prove that their art can do well and that there is money to be made,a�? she says.
        Delhi 2012Making a mark
        Swamy got involved with Pattachitra artists when she went to Odisha as part of CCIa��s education programme, Educate to Sustain, which helps children get a good education while encouraging them to practise their craft after hours. a�?I realised that the young looked down on craft as a lowly profession, but at the same time were disillusioned by the hack jobs they had landed at call centres and the like. If they knew their trade and their craft, then with simple mathematics and book keeping, they would be able to run a business with more confidence,a�? Swamy informs, adding that a few youngsters participating in her exhibition have proved this. a�?They are savvy, putting their work online and encouraging others to follow,a�? she beams.
        Painting stories
        The exhibition is a collaboration between Swamy, city-based art collector Ashwin Subramaniyam and Vinnyasa Gallery. The work, which was initiated in February, has resulted in 30 wall pieces and several smaller rolls. a�?While many of them are traditionala��featuring Radha-Krishna and Jagannatha, or sensuous themes such as raas leelaa��others are quite secular like the one featuring exquisite line drawings of musical instruments and another charting the six seasons,a�? says Swamy, who wants to elevate it to the status of an art and preserve its integrity. a�?News of the exhibition is already spreading and I am getting requests to take it to cities like Mumbai,a�? she says. Up next, she wants to do something similar with the stone carvers and tribal jewellery makers she has come across while in Odisha.
        Rs.12,000 onwards. From January 2-12 at the Vinnyasa Premier Art Gallery. Details: 24982515

        a��Surya Praphulla Kumar

          0 59

          Ditch the smartphone and mark your holidays and presentations with these quirky calendars

          From Naturally Auroville, these handmade calendars are minimalist and affordable. With hand pressed leaves, they come in different colours and are made from Aurovillea��s famous handmade paper. At the store in Khader Nawaz Khan Road. Rs.249. Details: 28330517

          Turn up the heat
          As expected, Pirellia��s 2015 calendar is nothing less than hot. Photographed by the talented Steven Meisel, it features supermodels like Gigi Hadid, Adriana Lima and Joan Smalls. The models have been styled by Carine Roitfeld and each picture is natural and sexy. Details: pirellical.com

          Pet corner
          True to form, this yeara��s diary from The Chennai Adoption Drive is adorable. The diary titled, Paws and People, narrates warm and fuzzy stories of homeless animals and how they got themselves a home. Rs.250. Details: chennaiadoptiondrive@gmail.com

          PirelliDMale order
          This calendars by choreographer Sunil Menon showcases creatively shot photographs of male models sporting heavy make-up and Theyyam head-gear. As part of their Sahodaran fund-raising calendar, these pictures were taken at Menona��s home in Kerala.A� Rs.1,000. Details: sunilmenon@yahoo.com

          sunil menonPrint specific
          Try something different with Chennai-based artist Maheshwari Janardhana��s wall calendar. This digitally-printed piece, titled Jardin de la�?amour, with birds, moths, butterflies and plants will get you started on a cheery note. Rs.750 Details: etsy.com

          Star struck
          If youa��re on celebrity photographer Dabboo Ratnania��s gift list then be prepared to rouse much envy. His calendar this year has an interesting line up of celebrities. Besides Hrithik Roshan, he has taken pictures of Aishwariya Rai Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt. On request only. Details: dabbooratnani.com

            0 81

            Make life simpler with these on-trend diaries

            a4 plainSlow and steady
            Feature in some a�?me timea�� in 2015. Thata��s the message Hidesigna��s new diary conveys. Introducing the a�?Go Slowa�� philosophy for the year 2015, their limited-edition leather bound diaries carry several stories about the brand. Priced at Rs.2,895, it is available at all the Hidesign stores. Details: hidesign.com

            Feather lite
            Keep this diary from Hermes only for special and interesting events. With a bright feather prints, leta��s hope the year ahead is as colourful and bright as the diary. So go ahead and make those plans. Available at The Oberoi Hotel, New Delhi. From Rs.18,000 onwards. Details: 011 43607780

            LAL1Tribal influence
            These diaries from the brand Lal have been created by Pondicherry-based designer, Bidisha Samantaray. The handmade diaries feature prints influenced by the Kinnaura tribe from Himachal Pradesh, Banjara tribe from Rajasthan, Aka tribe from
            Arunachal Pradesh and other tribes.A� Rs.220. At the Living Art Lifestyles store in Pondicherry. Details: 0413 4308773

            Carnetdesoie_BrazilGraphite_dessindeLaurenceBourtoumieux_-A�VicenteSahucQuirk factor
            This diary justifies the word quirk in the brand name, The Quirk Box. Sporting doddles and pictures of cartoon characters and bears, it is sure to get more than a few compliments. The Dream Factor Planner is priced at Rs.1,980. Details: thequirkbox.com

              0 67

              Reviving heritage
              Till January 18, Taj Khazana
              Taja��s inhouse lifestyle store Taj Khazana is organising a winter sale till January 18. Get up to 20 per cent offA� on select merchandiseA� such as benarasi, chanderi sarees, pashmina stoles and much more. Priced from Rs.2,000 onwards. From 10 am to 8 pm. Details: 66002012
              ujjawal dubeyBro code
              Till December 31, Chamiers
              Ita��s shopping time for men at the Amethyst Room as they showcase Ujjawal Dubeya��s menswear label Antar Agni. Available in cotton and linen, the festive collection comprises of Indo- Western resort wear, mix of trousers, salwars, jackets, kurtas and waistcoats.
              Priced from Rs.6,000 onwards. Till December 31. Details: 43042099
              Bar ConsoleThe surprise
              Today, Cherry Tin
              Herea��s a fun competition to take part in. Capture your frienda��s reactions as you give them a terrible gift and send in your videos to Cherry Tina��s Whatsapp number or share it on their Facebook page. The best video will be featured on their YouTube channel and the most popular entry will receive a special prize. Hurry, as today is the last date to send in your entries. Details: 9840074438
              Musical set GaneshaMusically
              inclined Till stocks last, TTK road
              In the spirit of Margazhi, Mantra has brought out a music- themed set of Ganeshas a bronze antique finish. Lord Ganesha is seen playing musical instruments. Also check out other products like the Buddha statues and the bodhi trees. Finished in gold, silver and antique finishes. From Rs.5,400. Details: 42059911
              Raising the bar
              December 31, Pink Gym
              Perfect for the party season, Socktail.com is offering an assortment of designer bar cabinets. Made of high quality sheesham wood, they come in a variety of sizes and are fitted with a range of stocking units like wine rack, wine glass slots, drawers and cabinets. Also, check out the Mint Rustic trunk bar and the Attic Braunschweig wine rack (from Rajasthan). Priced from Rs.2,125 on wards. Details: socktail.com

              pink 2Stay trim
              Till December 31, Pink Gym
              After you binge on gourmet spreads this season, here is how cut down the calories. Pink gym is offering a free 21-day trial membership to those who want to take the first step to healthy living. Also, a perfect way to begin the New Year, the offer is available till December 31. Details: 244612222

              Tag a wish
              December 30, Sheraton Park
              Sheraton Park has a a�?wish treea�� on display at their lobby. Guests can write a note (along with the address of the recipient) and hang it on the tree. The hotel will send a card (with your message) to the recipient, on your behalf. Details: 24994101

                0 38

                Through the lens
                With a photo tribute (by Bhargavii Mani) and a series of talks and performances, Arpana is endeavouring to demystify dance and music. CV Chandrasekhar will explain natya today, while Sudharani Raghupathy will explain her rasas on dance and TV Gopalakrishnan will take you through the intricacies of music, on Saturday and Sunday. At Lalit Kala Akademi, from 4 pm – 5.30 pm. Details: 28291692

                Snip cult 5Have a ball
                The season for breaking into song is not over yet. The Little Theatre is organising its Sing Along Weekendsa��a medley of song, dance and drama. Under the artistic direction of KK, music director Kavita Baliga and choreographer Vikas Rao, children from two to nine can perform with professional entertainers and have a blast. From January 10, every weekend tillA� February 1. 10 am – 11.30 am. Rs.300. Details: 28211115

                Cult snip 6Pretty little things
                a��Tis the season to be jolly, and creative. Keep idle fingers busy with a variety of programmes at Ilangoa��s Artspace. Choose from neon quilling (today and tomorrow, Rs.1,700), clay modelling workshops (December 27-28, Rs.1,000) and lino cut print making workshop (December 29-30, Rs.1,500). For children eight years and above. To register, call 42085180

                  0 131

                  You name it, they serve it. We take you through the rarest of delicacies you can order in the city, with a price tag as exclusive as the dishes themselves

                  While New Yorka��s finest restaurants serve Kobe and Wagyu beef, the pride of Sydneya��s top restaurants is their Abalone shellfish and West Australian black truffles. Thankfully, Chennai isna��t far behind, as city restaurants offer many of these rare and exclusive world ingredients, at a hefty sum of course.

                  By Preeti GT

                  VESTIN5Australian Lamb Chops @ The Westin
                  Executive chef Joseph Rathna Raj believes that the right ingredients make winning dishes. Like the Lamb Chops The Westin imported at Rs.3,200/kg and used in their roast steak. With a smoked barbecue pre marinade and served with three peppercorn jus, the dish priced at Rs.1,950 is not everyday fare. Also ideal for a special occasion is their Mushroom Risotto, that costs Rs.675 for a portion of 180gms. The dish uses Italian Porcini mushrooms imported at a staggering Rs.6,600/kg! Therea��s also their Seafood Risotto and Paella, priced at Rs.1,275 with a touch of exotic Spanish Saffron sourced at Rs.1,200/gm. While there, do try their T Bone Steak of US grade meat (Rs.3,200) and finish off with a house special Cheesecake (Rs.475) made with Italian cream cheese. Details: 22553366

                  Alaskan Crab @ The Leela Palace
                  Succulent and meaty with an intense flavour, the Alaskan Crab Leg served with tobiko is one of the hotela��s best sellers from its Japanese section. Importing at a whopping Rs.12,000/kg, the dish will tastefully set you back by Rs.2,200. Even the tobiko or flying fish roe, is imported from Japan at roughly Rs.5,000/kg. Executive chef Dharmen Makawana insists, a�?Ita��s only fitting that a hotel of The Leelaa��s calibre is able to offer the very best to its guests and thata��s precisely why we import over 100 kilos of fresh vegetable and fruits from Thailand every week!a�? Do try their Sashimi (Rs.900/20gms) that uses Ottoro, a blue finned tuna belly. Signature dumplings of White Truffle paste (Rs.700) also come highly recommended. Details: 33661234

                  a�?To set ourselves apart from the rest, we literally bring the world to our guesta��s plate,a�? insists executive chef Ajit Bangera. And he means everything from the Marmara Almonds of Iran to US grade Rib Eye meat and even Kashmiri Morels. An exclusive Japanese
                  ingredient, Hondashi, made of dried bonito flakes, costs almost Rs.5,000/kg and is used in the hotela��s signature stir fries and teppanyaki. Since gelatine sheets are a key ingredient in a pastry pantry, chef Bangera procures a German silver grade variety (Rs.10,000) that is virtually tasteless and hence versatile in its addition to mousses and cakes. Also try their Special Almond Kulfi (Rs.300) or Chandragupta Malpua (Rs.350) that celebrate the ultimate taste of the Marmara Almond, sourced at Rs.4,600/kg. Details: 22200000

                  INGREDIENTS SHOT AT HOTEL PARK HYAT. EXPRESS/A.RAJA CHIDAMBARAM.Peruvian Green Asparagus @ Park Hyatt
                  Ritzy restaurant The Flying Elephant is home to many an ingredient and chef de cuisine Megha Balasubramanian insists, a�?Our signature dishes using international ingredients are contemporary and rare a�� our way of bringing something exciting to the food scene in Chennai.a�? True to their mantra, you will find Spanish Tapas or Gazpacho soup served with vine ripened tomatoes that come straight from Italy at Rs.1,500/kilo. Fresh Scottish Salmon arrives via an air shipment to create a toothsome Grilled Salmon, served with braised red lentils and tajini (Rs.1,700). To whip up that perfect chilli sambal for chicken satay, special thai red chillies are imported at Rs.700/kg. And for vegetarians, their thick and juicy Pervian Green Asparagus, purchased at Rs.2,500/kg, with morel foam and served with more fresh morels and edamame beans, will not disappoint. Others can try the wood-fire oven Grilled US Black Angus Tenderloin, served with brown butter sauce at Rs.4,000. Details: 71771234

                  Rajesh Radhakrishnan, area director a�� food production, says, a�?Chennaiites are extremely well travelled and seek speciality cuisines and dishes. They are willing to pay a premium for authenticity. As a chef, I strive to keep the menu unique using everything from earthy millets to Japanese Wasabi.a�? Truly bonafide is the Italian mixed mushroom Risotto with truffonade (Rs.850) that uses Gucchi mushrooms imported at a monstrous price of Rs.25,000/kg. Equally fabulous is the Chilean Seabass, procured at Rs.6,800/kg, baked and served with a tomato and basil dust and jalapeno chutney (Rs.1,675 for the dish). For the adventurous, Seared Canadian Scallops (Rs.800) served with an arugula salad are perfect with a balsamic glaze. Other imported ingredients include the lotus stem used in salads and stir fries and wasabi that accompanies a Japanese snack platter. Details: 42676000

                  Caviar continues to be one of the most exclusive foods in Chennai. At Taj Coromandela��s Italian fine dining restaurant Prego, executive chef Alok Anand pairs it with classic accompaniments of Melba toast, boiled egg segments, parsley and shallots. Try different varieties of caviar like Oscetra or Sevruga, but dona��t miss the ultimate indulgence a�� Beluga caviar priced at Rs.12,500 per portion. The hotel also stocks fresh blueberries from Holland, available in the form of a low sugar Berry ConsommA�, Lemon Mint Sorbet, priced at `800.
                  Details: 66002827

                  INGREDIENTS SHOT AT HILTON. EXPRESS/A.RAJA CHIDAMBARAM.Norwegian Salmon @ Hilton
                  a�?We take our global brand and image very seriously and with enthusiastic foodies in Chennai, we are constantly on the lookout to create nothing but the best for our guests,a�? declares executive chef Yogender Pal. Go around the world tastefully with imported meats, Madagascar vanilla, gold leaf and more. Norway is synonymous with great salmon and thata��s evident if youa��ve tried their Teriyaki Salmon (Rs.1,395) served with a hearty portion of grilled veggies and mashed potatoes. Other good alternatives are the Chargrilled US Lobster (pre order @ Rs.2,200) with a Cointreau butter or the juicy New Zealand lamb chops (Rs.2,150) served with an asparagus puree. Better still, try the Sushi and Sashimi made depending on the availability of Kampachi, a Japanese fish. Even the humble lamb stew, Kundan Kalia (pre order @Rs.1,100), is garnished with a gold leaf. Details: 22255555

                    0 115

                    Promising speedy delivery and more outlets by the end of the year, Faasoa��s rolls into town

                    Chatpate Chole Imp 333Fanatic Activism Against Substandard Occidental Shit (Faasoa��s) was started in Pune in 2003 by Kallol Banerjee and Jaydeep Barman, two IIM graduates bored with their jobs and nursing an entrepreneurial itch. It took longer for that dream to bear fruit than they must have expected. Meanwhile, penniless students like me would frequent the then neighbourhood wrap-joint avatar of Faasoa��s and eat our fill of greasy, tasty katti roll-esque wraps at friendly prices. A full decade later, I stumble into a hip, colourful fast-food incarnation of my old college haunt in my own city. Between 2003 and 2011, Faasoa��s was a dream stuttering in production. In 2011, with an investment from Sequoia Capital, Faasoa��s took off. Apparently marrying some of the production practices of the vendors of said a�?Occidental Shita�� with the quality and flavour of the katti rolls of Kolkata, Faasoa��s has expanded rapidly with about 85 outlets across Pune, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Vadodara and Bangalore. Its first outlet opened in Chennai last month in Besant Nagar and two more are expected in Fice feast comboVelachery and OMR. Hyderabad and Mysore are next on the agenda, with plans to be in 15 cities by the end of next year.
                    But what really sets Faasoa��s apart from its competition? Quality, consistency, hygiene and speed, says Raghav Joshi, VP South India operations. We try their Bhuna Chicken wraps served with a spicy Teekha Chaska powder. The wraps are competent, and perhaps, most appealingly, light and non-greasy. They can be converted to a a�?serve on ricea�� option which, Joshi says, is extremely popular. Other than the desi stylings, there are a few cheese and mayo options as well. Faasoa��s also introduces new items to their menu every few months including season-specific wraps. The food is freshly prepared to your order and prices range from Rs.50-Rs.130 for the wraps and Rs.85-Rs.120 for the rice a�?feasta�� options. We strongly recommend you order the Faasoa��s brand of soft drink, Swig (Rs.30 green apple/jal jeera), if you need something to, err, swig. Faasoa��s other USP, according to Joshi, is their speedy delivery: a guarantee of 20 minutes or a Rs.150 discount on the order (within the locality). You can also tweet for a delivery or order through their website and foodpanda. Details: 7812023839

                    a�� Ranjitha Gunasekaran

                      0 71

                      Mapping the elaborate NYE spreads across the city

                      Before the fireworks start, be sure to sit down for a sumptuous year-end meal. This time around, we find a good mix of the usual live counters we have come to love, along with set menus, themed dining and global spreads too. Read on:
                      a�� Team Indulge

                      Asian-Chicken-Wings-1Asian evening
                      @ Vivanta by Taj-Connemara
                      Hip Asia presents a New Yeara��s Eve meal with a delightful variety. Featuring ketumbar ayam (fried chicken with fresh pepper and coriander), honey chilli lotus stem, lobster with butter garlic sauce, lamb chops and steamed silken tofu with black bean sauce, the buffet is priced a tRs.3,000 per person. Details: 66000000

                      Red Lobster SeafoodFour-course feast
                      @ Taj Coromandel
                      For connoisseurs, Prego at Taj Coromandel offers a four-course Italian meal with wine for New Yeara��s Eve. Bronzed scallops, smoked pancetta, blueberry and milk braised young lamb leg, whipped mascarpone, strawberry and champagne sorbet are part of the menu. At Rs.4,000 per person. Details: 66002827

                      Meaty affair @ The Westin
                      Seasonal Tastes at The Westin tries to pamper carnivores with honey mustard glazed ham, rubbed beef tenderloin with roasted shallot gravy, Singapore chilli crab and the humble chicken stew. Dessert is no less a hearty affair, with blueberry pear cobbler, fig and honey tarts, German chocolate mousse, apple jalebis and more. From Rs.2,500 onwards (non alcoholic), Rs.1,800 for children. Details: 22553366

                      scallops-065Trip to the Orient
                      @ The Leela Palace
                      This New Yeara��s Eve, indulge in a treat from the Orient. Expect chicken sea bass with enoki mushroom dumplings, Alaskan crab chong soi bow, Singapore style chilli prawns with mantou buns and king oyster mushroom with lotus rolls at China XO, the speciality restaurant of The Leela Palace. At Rs.6,500 plus taxes per person (including alcohol) and Rs.3,500 plus tax for children (5 to 12 years). For something Indian, Jamawar offers fare from the North to the South. Details: 33661234

                      raspberry-sorbetEgyptian night
                      @ The Residency Towers
                      For some themed dining, head to The Residency Towers. Wea��re told to expect an Egyptian-theme at the New Yeara��s Eve dinner at The Crown. In addition to usual suspects like pasta, biryani and chaat counters, there willA� also be free flowing premium beverages, with surprise gifts for diners throughout the evening. Details: 28156363
                      Veggie delight @ E-Hotel
                      Vegetarians might want to try the spread at Entree. With sweet lotus stem Nizami tarkari, Singapore rice noodles, Cantonese fried rice and tomato oregano soup with cheese croutons, they also have a selection of live counters for pasta and dosas. At Rs.999 plus tax, on New Yeara��s Eve. Details: 28463333

                      img_1312Global spread @ Sheraton Park
                      Cappuccino gives you a global experience, with braised lamb ossobuco Milanese, slow-roasted pork belly with BBQ sauce, grilled baby lobster, calamari and prawns and Moroccan chickpea stew, on their New Yeara��s Eve dinner buffet (Rs.3,299). Meanwhile, Dakshin gives lovers of South Indian fare a real treat with vazhai shunti, meen pollichathu, nandu puttu, Syrian kozhi ishtoo, tallale jhalke and more, with their NYE spread (Rs.3,499). Details: 24994101

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