Home Archives 2016 February 12

Daily Archives: Feb 12, 2016

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    Three stooges
    Vadivelu may have used the words jil jung juk as gibberish in a film, but the Siddharth-starrer—of the same name—has its title related to the plot. It’s about three hitmen on a mission, their journey chronicled in a humorous way. Debutant director Deeraj Vaidy calls it an ‘action comedy’.
    “To me, the film is all about the universe being both ruthless and kind to a bunch of guys,” he says. Siddharth’s second production venture, the film (releasing today) is sans a female lead.

    A tea break
    Today, Vemal and Nandita are coming on-screen to regale audiences. Anjala, directed by debutant Thangam Saravanan, is produced by stunt choreographer Dhilip Subbarayan. The film’s central theme is a tea stall run by a family for generations. With Pasupathi in the cast, it is touted as a full-length comic caper. Hopefully, this could prove a game changer for Vemal, whose career is on a shaky wicket.

    Packing a punchIrudhi-Suttru-Movie-Stills-11

    When apprehended by cops, criminal elements sometimes mention a scene in a film as the inspiration for their acts. So it is heartening to note that films have a positive effect on society, too. Like Irudhi Suttru. Since the film’s release, female boxing has got a thumbs up and coaches have reported an increase in the number of female trainees in their classes. An elated Madhavan remarks, “This is so very awesome and humbling. This is what I really work for as an actor.”

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      Will McGill finally turn into Saul Goodman in the new season?

      The wait for Jimmy McGill’s fans is over. You can catch his antics, and relentless pursuit of becoming a top criminal lawyer, from Tuesday, as
      season two of Better Call Saul takes off. The new season will have you guessing whether McGill will transform into his alter ego Saul Goodman. For the uninitiated, Better Call Saul is a spin-off series of the hit crime drama, Breaking Bad, where he appears as attorney Goodman. Actor-comedian Bob Odenkirk, who plays McGill, tells us about the new season.

      What appeals to you about McGill?
      I can relate to McGill, who’s trying to find himself at an older age of 40-45, and who feels like he hasn’t made his mark yet. I think a lot of people can relate to that feeling. I’m intrigued by what happens to him, his journey to becoming Saul, and how he finds himself saying after the experience of Breaking Bad, “Well now who can I be in this world?”

      Will McGill find love?
      At this point of time, McGill is a free spirit and he’s even enjoying it. But he knows he can’t stay close to this girl (Kim Wexler, who works as a litigator) and be on the other side of the law.
      So if they have to get close, they are going to have to figure out a place to live in that world.
      Key to a successful spin-off.
      Just break new ground and that’s what the series creators did with Better Call Saul. You can see the DNA of Breaking Bad in Better Call Saul, but the writers did stray for sure. They got lost in a good way, the way an artiste should be.
      Premieres on February 16, 11 pm onwards on Colors Infinity

      — Team Indulge

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        Actor Jessica Pearson talks about being in control in Suits

        The fifth season of Suits comes with a lot of promise. It’s going to be game changing, with intense twists, promise the makers. This legal drama series, set in a law firm (Pearson Hardman) in NYC, is about Mike Ross (Patrick J Adams) who works with Harvey Specter (Gabriel Macht) and how the two close case after case.
        Gina Torres, who plays Jessica Pearson, the boss of the firm, talks about the new season, and playing the leader of the pack. We ask if it’s satisfying to play the boss in a macho corporate world? “When you get to look like this — absolutely! One of the things I love about this character is that as much as she is in charge and in a man’s world, she does not shortchange her femininity or her womanhood to be that. There’s never ever a doubt in your mind that she is in full possession of who she is,” says Torres.
        But it also means that we never really get to see her weaker side, isn’t it? “Pearson can’t afford to show her vulnerable side. But her firm is her vulnerability. It’s what she’s dedicated her life to. So whenever it comes under fire or it’s being threatened, which is every day and every season, she rallies, and tries to figure out how to mitigate the damage,” add the actor.
        It’s difficult not to ask Torres this: does she think it’s hard for a woman in a law firm, as it is for them in Hollywood? Pat comes the reply, “I think it’s hard for women, period. But we’re hardwired to push through whatever our expectations may be, whether they are societal, emotional or personal, and work towards self‑fulfillment. And so if using your femininity in such a way that it objectifies you — that’s never a good thing. But if it’s coming from a place of ownership and knowing, you walk into the room with that. And I think that’s wonderful.”

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          There’s always room for love, especially on the World Wide Web. We bring you two matchmaking and dating apps that you might want to check out this weekend.
          IncLov: Here’s an app with a ‘no discrimination’ policy. Launched by Kalyani Khona and Shankar Srinivasan on January 21, the matchmaking app, IncLov, is designed for the differently-abled, or those suffering from health disorders. But the Android app— which has had more than 1,000 registrations since its launch—has also seen signups from divorcees, widows and those who are fit as a fiddle. It connects people on the basis of location, disability type, lifestyle choices, etc. To make the platform “inclusive”, it has been integrated with screen reader and talkback (for visually-impaired members), among others features. In the future, they will add a video call feature for people with speech disability, says 23-year-old Khona. She is also assisting the government with its ‘Accessible India’ campaign. Details: inclov.com

          MateriaLove: It’s not the sort of name you expect a dating app to have. But founder Prateek Bhardwaj says he’s trying to boost dating and e-commerce organically. The 24-year-old app developer explains, “When I’d signed up on Tinder, I realised people would chat with their ‘matches’ online, but seldom met in person. This is what MateriaLove is working at—to encourage people to meet or go out on dates, by partnering with other geolocation apps.” You can download it from Play Store, and log in with your Facebook account. You will find recommended matches (called connects) and the drill is Tinder-like: swipe right or left. Once two people like each other, they can start chatting. And if they wish to go out on a date, they can book a cab, then a restaurant or a movie outing. They can also order gifts. Details: materialove.co

          —Barkha Kumari

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            Three stooges
            Vadivelu may have used the words jil jung juk as gibberish in a film, but the Siddharth-starrer—of the same name—has its title related to the plot. It’s about three hitmen on a mission, their journey chronicled in a humorous way. Debutant director Deeraj Vaidy calls it an ‘action comedy’.
            “To me, the film is all about the universe being both ruthless and kind to a bunch of guys,” he says. Siddharth’s second production venture, the film (releasing today) is sans a female lead.

            A tea break
            Today, Vemal and Nandita are coming on-screen to regale audiences. Anjala, directed by debutant Thangam Saravanan, is produced by stunt choreographer Dhilip Subbarayan. The film’s central theme is a tea stall run by a family for generations. With Pasupathi in the cast, it is touted as a full-length comic caper. Hopefully, this could prove a game changer for Vemal, whose career is on a shaky wicket.

            Packing a punch
            When apprehended by cops, criminal elements sometimes mention a scene in a film as the inspiration for their acts. So it is heartening to note that films have a positive effect on society, too. Like Irudhi Suttru. Since the film’s release, female boxing has got a thumbs up and coaches have reported an increase in the number of female trainees in their classes. An elated Madhavan remarks, “This is so very awesome and humbling. This is what I really work for as an actor.”

            Malini Mannath

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              With its craggy outcrops and unique food, Orvakal has much to offer that is new, even for someone from neighbouring Telangana.

              What could possibly be different about a place that was a part of undivided Andhra Pradesh just two years ago? Turns out, quite a lot.  On the way to Orvakal, on the picturesque NH 44, if you stop for breakfast at Kurnool (just 197 km from Hyderabad), the local specialty is uggani bhajji, a dish no Hyderabadi has heard of. That’s Orvakal for you, with small mysteries that it unravels in its own low-key way.  Incidentally, the breakfast is a dish made with puffed rice and fried onions, that comes with a batter-fried green chilli for some spice and crunch (Rs 20).
              The landscape:  As the arid Telangana gives way to the rocky-yet-fertile Rayalaseema, the surroundings look at least three shades greener than in Hyderabad. And the weather is a couple of degrees hotter, although the breeze makes up for it.  The first sight of jowar and sunflower fields is officially your first selfie spot. A few minutes after you cross Kurnool is when you spot the first rocks. Before you can decide whether they look like a camel or an old war horse, others take over, leaving you questioning how the Orvakal Rock Garden was formed.
              The formations: For the locals, it doesn’t matter if Orvakal is blessed with rocks rich in silica and quartz—a raw material that is a blessing for the glass industry. The fact that movie directors spin their magic around these rocks fascinates them more. Local guide Param reels off names of movies, including SS Rajamouli’s magnum opus, Baahubali. Most well-travelled tourists will tell you that this 1,000-acre rock garden is nothing short of the Great Canyon. At our resort—the Andhra Pradesh Tourism has named it after the rock garden and ensured that each of the 22 cottages has a grand view of the rocks—the bougainvilleas, in various colours, add a bright touch to the stony facade of the fortress-like structure. The best way to enjoy the place is to check in late in the morning, take a short drive (five kilometres) to see the Ketavaram cave paintings, head back for lunch and then spend the evening walking through the resort, to admire each of the several hundred rocks formations there.
              The cuisine: Ragi sankati, with natukodi pulusu (chicken curry), is the district’s specialty. Sankati is a soft ball of ragi flour that is cooked in hot water with rice to make dumplings that one eats by dipping it in the gravy (Rs 100 for both). Peanuts (palli) grow in abundance in the region and palli chutney is  a zingy dish one mustn’t miss. Before you brand them spice specialists,  try the khova bun,  where the boring bread comes smeared with sweet khova (thickened milk) in the middle.
              What to do: The resort is open to the general public (for a nominal fee of `10), so you shouldn’t be surprised if you come to the open air restaurant and find a family celebrating a cradle ceremony there. Monkeys roam the premises and are relentless photo bombers. Although there is no pool or a gym, a walk around the resort (on its jogging path) can be a good workout. But the best time of the day is evening, when the rocks are lit up.
              On the way back to Hyderabad, a good place for a quick stop is the Belum Caves. These underground caves are known for their stalactite and stalagmite formations, and are 80 km from the resort.
              AC cottages are Rs 1,400 a night. Details: 0912326085 / aptdc.in

              Text & pics: Manju Latha Kalanidhi
              The writer was invited by Andhra Pradesh Tourism

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              ITC Kakatiya’s Swasthya cuisine proves that healthy can be tasty

              Can healthy food be tasty? ITC Kakatiya’s new Swasthya cuisine at Dakshin proves that taste and health can go hand in hand. Swasthya is about replacing western food with Indian substitutes which are green and healthy. The food, therefore, is light, feel-good and with the stamp of good health on it.
              Reminding everyone of their roots, all the meals are segregated into five segments – arambham (welcome drink), prarambham (starters), annam (rice delicacies), bhojanam (main course) and madhuram (desserts). One can choose from 18 dishes out of which five are non-vegetarian delicacies in the menu. The concept of eating on a banana leaf truly defines south Indian culture and ITC has added a luxurious touch to it. The food is served on brass plates with banana leaf on it. There is no particular vegetarian and non-vegetarian thali concept but it is all a la carte.
              Speaking about the Swasthya, executive chef Paul Noronha said, “We are the land of spices and we have everything green and healthy here in our land but we tend to search elsewhere. All the dishes made available for our guests in Swasthya cuisine has been discussed with nutritionists to keep the balance in diet at the same time healthy too.”
              Your tour of Swasthya cuisine begins with fresh tender coconut water mixed with mint and honey. Definitely a refreshing start. For the starters, the restaurant offers dishes such as the spicy and watery Miriyala Charu (spiced vegetable broth tempered with pepper and garlic), protein-rich Meka Kalla Charu (hearty broth made from lamb trotters), smooth and flavourful cauliflower Melagu Paretti (cauliflower florets tossed with onion and pepper), Molaka Vittanalla Gare (steamed sprout and lentil patties), Kanava Melagu Roast (squids tossed with black pepper and chilies) and Meen Varuval (pan fried boneless fish napped with chilli and lemon).
              Apart from this one can also avail Kerala dishes like Iddiappam (steamed rice vermicelli) and Appam (steamed lacy pancake cooked in a deep pan). For the main course, one can choose from eight dishes such as Dali Toi/Kootu (lentil tempered with garlic and vegetables), Dhappalam (Mix vegetables cooked in a piquant and spiced gravy), Padpe Upkari (seasonal greens with onion and coconut shavings), Kalan Battani Masala (mushroom and green peas cooked in onion and tomato gravy), Ulava Charu (rich and creamy horse gram liquid tempered with onions), Raagi Sanghati (finger millet flour and cooked rice), Palakoora Chapa (fresh water fish cubes tossed with spinach and spices) and Ulava Charu Kodi (Chicken cooked in piquant horse gram gravy).
              Besides these, another highlight of the Swasthya cuisine is the desserts. The hotel serves Pesara Payasam (lentil and cane jaggery simmered in milk). The water served here for the guests are also made with herbs. This food festival will be greeting its guests till February 29 for lunch and dinner. Price ranges from Rs 215 – Rs 900. Details: 23400132

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              Stock up on artisanal chocolates from All Things this Valentine’s Day

              At the four-month-old All Things chocolate store, every bar has a story to tell. About cities, colours, flowers and festivals too. Started by schoolmates Tejasvi Chandela (a chef by profession) and Kuhu Kochar (a graphic designer), the brand reflects their love for chocolate and design. “We have a flavour for everyone. We source raw chocolate from Belgium that has origins in places like Java and temper, mould and pack it here. For instance, Our All Things Tropical has Madagascar dark choco with passion fruit ganache,” Chandela says. The duo’s new travel bars come in two exotic flavours — Barcelona and Jaipur. “Those who would like to taste the Spanish beverage sangria, will get that in every bite of our All Things Barcelona. We introduced All Things Jaipur in connection with the Jaipur Literature Festival held in January. There’s a nostalgic touch in the flavour as both of us hail from Jaipur. The bar is a fusion of rich whiskey and dark choco,” she smiles. Their best sellers include All Things Childhood (Belgian milk choco with banana and toffee), All Things Birthday (white choco with champagne and strawberries) and All Things Breakfast (dark choco with biscotti). “We are planning to introduce organic bars too,” she concludes.
              Also, Date Night truffle box with eight chocolates—like dark chocolate with salted caramel crunch and white chocolate with champagne and edible gold, in pairs.

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              The city’s uncanny ability to switch over from one mood to the other effortlessly is simply amazing

              The city is witnessing a multi-cultural zing at its peak this week. Hyderabad is ‘God’s Own City’ as we have the prestigious Tirumala Vaibhavotsavam on one hand and we are gearing up for Valentine’s Day on the other. Red roses and gifts galore in some parts; saffron and white flowers in other areas. Added to this, my co-host from radio told me it was Chocolate Day this week. The more, the merrier to celebrate.
              I sang at the TTD festival this week. It was all glamour and glitter in the most divine ambience! Floral decorations, well-dressed devotees, many stars like actor Nagarjuna and page 3 celebrities visited the premises that was almost a second Tirumala. One would also have thought that people would not drive on a weekday from work for a few hours for an event like this. But wait. Thousands thronged the area from 5.30 pm onwards on a Monday evening. Politicos Chintala Ramachandra Reddy, Dr Laxman and a few others came with their families. Actors Allari Naresh and his wife were engrossed in the mood of the evening. Film director K Raghavendra Rao was there to oversee a few things too. Now what more can people ask for? This was a perfect alignment of everything under one pandal. Everyone who attended had their dress code perfect, silk clothes and the traditional long red line on their foreheads. We are talking of young college students too. Undeniably, there was some kind of a surreal power in the area!
              “It is indeed a blessing to be here in the presence of Lord in our very own city,” said Naresh. I wondered at the sheer faith-driven energy that builds up the vibrations in a place. Just a few weeks ago, this place hosted a book fair and now has turned into a temple town. I really commend our ability to make things and happenings larger than life. We go to Numaish, the city exhibition. The very next week, we switch over to the devotional mood and attend a religious do. Before someone can brand us religious, we go out and support charity causes. Amidst all this, we shop, party and still have time to work. Amazing we are, aren’t we.

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              This Valentine’s Day dine with your loved one at the restaurants offering exclusive experiences

              Those red balloons, heart-shaped cakes and sparkling tulip glasses of champagne are enough to set the mood for Valentine’s Day. But this year, city hotels are taking extra effort to come up with refreshing themes for couples. If there are aphrodisiac dishes and sweet pizzas then there is something as unique as edible pansies and linarias. We bring you or list of interesting restaurants that are serving unique food with an equally amazing set-up. Read on:

              Five course dinner at Olive Bistro
              This space has a romantic set-up with frangipani trees and the open seating space overlooking the water-body beneath. The menu is equally tempting this V-Day with items like Amuse Bouche, Green Apple and Goat Cheese Salad and Sachertorte. The star food is Crab Croquette & Avocado Salad and Garden Vegetable Baklava. Talking more about the menu, chef Arun D‘Souza says, “Most of the ingredients used in the dishes are aphrodisiacs and this suits V-Day mood.” There will be bands playing romantic numbers. The celebrations start from Friday night itself. Price for two: `2,500++ taxes. Time: 7 pm onwards. Details: 69999127

              Vineyards and more
              at Radisson Blu
              Chill & Chill Terrace at Radisson Blu will be decorated like a French vineyard. There will be 50 kg of grapes for stomping. The cuisine features Mediterranean, European, Arabic, Oriental & far Eastern and Indian dishes. Chef Chandra Shekhar Pandey says, “We will have an array of special preparations like heart-shaped pizza topped with fresh cream and fruits.” Other dishes include Goan fish curry, Peshawari paneer Roll, Biryani ala’ Awadhi, and desserts based on grapes and berries. Aphrodisiac Legume Heart Pizza is their specialty this V-Day. Price: `2,222. Time: 7.30 pm-11.30 pm.Details: 7331133

              Real edible flowers 

              at ITC Kakatiya
              You must have eaten sweets with rose petals. But who eats pansies, snapdragons and cornflowers? Well, at Deccan Pavilion, ITC Kakatiya salads and desserts will be garnished with these edible flowers. Says chef Paul, “It depends on what I serve on V-Day. I will use my imagination accordingly.” These are specially grown flowers only for eating purpose and just any flower from the garden can’t be used for garnishing the dishes. Other than the flowers there will be specially crafted heart-shaped cakes, Derby Chicken, Veg Roast Lasagne and Saffron Beurre Blanc along with sparkling wine. There will candlelight dinner and brunch both. The celebrations begin from the night of February 13. Price for two: `4,000++ taxes. Time: 7.30 pm onwards. Details: 40081816

              Four-course

              meal at Chili’s
              This newly opening swanky restaurant at Banjara Hills is offering Chili’s signature Terlingua Chili and soups Cream of Mushroom soup along with Chicken Wings, Southwestern Rolls and Classic Nachos. There’s Fajita Chicken Quesadilla, Veggie and Cheese Quesadilla, Veggie Taco, and Chicken Crispers. For dessert there will be Molten Chocolate Cake. Price for two: `1,200++ taxes. Time: 12 pm onwards. Details: 40164353

              Exotic delights

              at Al Fresco, Taj Krishna
              There will be Indian, Continental, Live Grills, Turkey and Valentine’s Day special dessert buffet at Al Fresco, Taj Krishna. V-Day attractions are: Morroccan Charmoula Spiced Mackerel for non-vegetarians and Courgette Flan for Vegetarians. What the couples can look forward to is pre-placed cake at the table and departure gift. Couples can book unique dining experience also in advance. Chef Viswamitra Vellanki has curated the V-Day menu. Time: 7.30 pm-11 pm. Price for two: `5,000++ taxes. Details: 66662323

              Rosé brunch at

              Tre-Forni, Park Hyatt
              Handcrafted Italian delights, traditional recipes, signature desserts and a fine pairing of rosé champagnes, join us with your special one for the Valentine’s Day Rosé Brunch at Tre-Forni. Price per person: `2,500. Time: 12 pm onwards. Details: 49491234

              Aphrodisiac brunch

              at Okra, Marriott
              You heard it right. The recipes are traditional ones. On offer for V-Day are designer cakes and customised chocolates. The unique dish for V-Day is Red Ravioli with Pistachio, Cream Cheese & Brown Butter. Other dishes will be Baans Aur Murgh Ka Korma, Roast chicken with Strawberry Jus, Pistey Kaa Saalan,“We’re preparing Indian and international delicacies with ingredients that have aphrodisiac properties to kindle the romance,” says chef Gurunathan at Okra, Marriott Hotel. Price for two: `2,950++ taxes. Time: 12.30 pm. Details: 27522567

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