An epicurean voyage

An epicurean voyage

Venturing out to shop on a day the temperature reached nearly 50 degrees was a terrible idea, which is why when we saw tempting drinks like Guava Mary, Paan and Gulkand Mojito, Chocotini and Whiskey Sour, Nimbu ka Achar on its menu, we knew Gastronomica is where we would head to beat the heat.

Situated on the second floor, away from the cacophony of Greater Kailash’s M Block market, Gastronomica, the brainchild of Sumit Goyal, intends to offer a “refined culinary experience not defined by borders of a particular cuisine”. So we entered to wafts of deliciousness from their live kitchen (placed at the entrance) and stepped on to a wooden floor which has been created out of wine crates. And on their wall was an interesting installation ‘In Vino Veritas’ (in wine, [there is] truth) using 800 wine bottles.

Their carefully-curated menu moves across Pan-Asian, Indian and European cuisine offering tastes as diverse as Burmese, Malaysian, Thai, Chinese and others along with flavours from Europe and Mexico. We knew we had to try the drinks that drew us to the place and opted for Paan and Gulkand Mojito and Whiskey Sour, Nimbu ka Achar, before we even looked at the food menu. And it would not be wrong to say that we had not tasted anything like this before, as their mojito had white rum muddled with gulkand and served with fresh paan (betel) leaves; while the second drink was an astounding take on the classic cocktail that came with slices of lime pickle. It took us just one sip to realise the wonders the drink had done to our palate.

Refreshed, we picked up the food menu and it was time to set sail on a gastronomic journey. We were first served Quinoa Bhel – a little mound of quinoa, puffed ride, cucumber, bell peppers, pomegranate and a dash of lime bound together by mango sauce; and Chilled Red Beet Soup with Raspberry cream. The chatpata chaat and the not-so-chilled soup perfectly balanced each other’s flavours with the latter helping cut down the tangy element of the first.

Then came Kadi Chawal Aranchini, which reminded us of grandma’s kitchen (minus the cheese and burrani sriracha dip); the Chicken Samosa Teriyaki – a signature dish; and the Paan Chicken Tikka. On this fascination for paan, Goyal told Metrolife, that though he is not particularly fond of paan – his father is, and hence he grew up around the scent and flavour of the leaf. But as paan lovers, we loved the chargrilled chicken morsels in betel leaves and cheese marinade. It was a dish totally thought out of the box, as we had never imagined such diverse flavours could blend so beautifully. Even the Japanese twist to the usual samosas was unusually good.

We decided to take a little break from eating and ordered a second round of drinks which comprised Orange and Kaffir Lime Caprioska’ and ‘Old Fashioned. While the vodka-drink was extremely refreshing and zesty, the whiskey-based drink was strong with the earthy flavour of nutmeg, and orange. With drinks, we were served Kadhai Chicken Taco, Pulled Pork Taco’ and the Bacon Wrapped Japanese Quail. The ground chicken stuffed quail, wrapped in bacon and chargrilled, was served on a bed of millets. Tender, the bird was packed with flavours and came with maple jus, a perfect accompaniment.

It was time for desserts now, and it did not take us long to point our fingers at Ferrero Rocher Gulab Jamun and the White Chocolate Parfait. We could not control our excitement and dug into the sweet offerings the second they were placed on our table. “Divine” is all that we could say. However, we instantly fell in love with the gulab jamuns soaked in molten rocher with hazelnut that we forgot the parfait,
and kept digging our spoons into the deep fried ball of sweetness.

Address: M 55, Second Floor, M Block Market, Greater Kailash 1.
Meal for two: Rs 1,200 plus taxes
Timings: 12 pm to 12 am
Phone No: 9971172933

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