Home Chennai After Dark Swiss tastes, Indian ways

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    From left, Inga & AirAsia India CEO Mittu Chandilya with V Prakash at ITC Grand Chola, (right) Abhimanyu Prakash & Ishani Appaya

    Inga & AirAsia India CEO Mittu Chandilya with V Prakash at ITC Grand Chola

    Abhay Bakaya & Shaheen Ali

    Abhay Bakaya & Shaheen Ali

    It’s funny how last week we were discussing travel—to get away from the heat—and just as I make a quick trip to Mumbai, it starts raining in Chennai. The showers are a welcome break and I return to find the usually complaining party-goers in a better mood.

    Over the weekend, ITC Grand Chola hosted a special lunch featuring the culinary expertise of chef Peter Wyss, executive chef at the legendary Gstaad Palace in Switzerland. I love how chefs have become the new-age celebrities, and the rather eminent crowd that gathered proved my point. After four decades with the world-famous Swiss hotel, chef Wyss is here as part of a four-city tour by Indian-owned winery, Four Seasons Wines. Also joining the guests was its chief winemaker  and director, Abhay Kewadkar, who was happy to chat and answer questions.

    Ottimo Cucina Italiana was the perfect setting for the beautiful meal, so lovingly prepared. The menu

    Shrikant Wakharkar  & Sandeep Arora

    Shrikant Wakharkar
    & Sandeep Arora

    included everything from bite-sized nibbles to fresh salads, along with the chef’s interpretations of the classics. Eggplant polenta, cappuccino soup, roasted lamb rack with pepper jelly and lastly, desserts prepared with, what else, Lindt bitter chocolate. Conversation revolved around the pairing of wine with Indian food and, according to chef Wyss, the future looks bright for India.

    Meanwhile, at Westin, whisky ambassador Sandeep Arora hosted another tasting—of perfectly-aged Glenlivet single malts.

    Guestssavoured the whisky with a three-course Asian meal of dimsums, sushi, noodles and coconut creams.
    Then, almost as if the universe was speaking to us, after the weekend binging, we were invited to the launch of the new 136.1 Yoga Studio at Rutland Gate. The state-of-the-art studio has a Balinese feel, nestled in the garden-style estate. Besides giving us a look around the facility, guests were treated to a sampler session, thanks to Abhimanyu Prakash and Ishani Appaya, the co-founders of the property. One quick class later, everyone left feeling refreshed, promising to be back for more.

    -Paloma Rao (paloma@newindianexpress.com)

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