With a new menu and chef from Bangkok who prefers to make his own pastes, Lotus at The Park blossoms once more
It’s been 13 years since The Park introduced Lotus to connoisseurs of Thai cuisine in Chennai. Since then, the restaurant has seen three Thai chefs create everything from classics like green curry and satay to more unusual dishes like pandanus chicken and jellied water chestnuts. But while chefs may come and go, the food must endear — and Lotus’ new master chef, Kittisak Jencharoenporn, knows this all too well. That’s why the native of Bangkok, who has taken up his second stint in India at The Park, is crafting a menu that will not seem too familiar nor unfamiliar to regulars of the restaurant. “Some dishes like the mix mushroom with cashew nut sauce and the vegetable spring rolls are best sellers here. I’ve made small additions like duck and prawn spring rolls, but they are very different,” says the chef, who comes with experience from hotels like the Majestic Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok.
Home made advantage
A man of very few words, chef Jencharoenporn initially says we’ll have to wait till the relaunch on April 11, to see what’s new on the menu at Lotus. But after a bit of coaxing, he shares that we should try the pad Thai noodles, green curry and stir fried chicken with cashew nut. With ingredients that include sweet turnip and bean sprouts, the stir fried rice noodles will now be prepared with his special home made pad Thai sauce, he shares. And the ‘home made’ factor continues in dishes like the crab meat balls with Madras curry powder. “The curry is made with home made curry past that has ingredients like cumin, coriander seeds and dried chillies,” says the chef, insisting that Thai cuisine is adaptable. “For example, if you want to make a dish without using fish sauce, you can replace it with soya sauce or salt — the taste will be the same,” he points out. That said, the fish sauce, soya sauce and chief ingredients like dry chillies used in Lotus are all imported from Thailand, we’re told.
Designer and decor
Besides all the new names on the menu (we’re especially looking forward to the lamb shank stew and pork ribs with Thai-style BBQ sauce), Lotus will also be sporting new interiors. Yes, the silk curtains that adorn the walls will remain, but are taking on shades of the Blue Lotus, that has inspired the new colour palette of the restaurant. And while the seating has also been marginally increased, your waiters will be serving you clad in uniforms designed by our very own Vivek Karunakaran. Now if that’s not a complete revamp, we don’t know what is!
Approx Rs 2,500 plus tax for two. Details: 42676000