Sunny winter weather, perfect for a meal by the pool in conversation with some vivid foodies and the Chefs- Chef Paul Noronha and Chef Vishal Baliga, is how I spent my (almost) last weekend of the year.
With festive vibes and overindulging days, ITC added another unforgettable gastronomical experience when they hosted an Influences meet at their all day restaurant at Deccan Pavilion, where they launched a new menu and invited me to join the other food bloggers and the chef himself over a well curated tasting session.
ITC has been known to host some of the well researched food festivals in Hyderabad and across other chains of ITC restaurant, so when i see their new menu, i can say there was no effort spared. Well this launch is nationwide; each ITC hotels has added the local flavors and love but the core attention and endeavor was given to choosing healthy and fresh, giving their bit of responsible luxury to their guest (without compromising on taste, because healthy doesn’t mean tasteless; right choices and ingredients can make your meal as indulging and healthy as possible)
While we were all engrossed in conversations (on food of course) sipping on bubbly wine, our first dish for the day arrived looking all beautiful- ‘Anise Poached Pears’ fresh, perfectly combined with burrata cheese and pesto sauce, i must say it was indeed an incredible start.
Next came ‘Singaporean Laksa’, well this was my very first time trying a Laksa but after the first sip of this aromatic dish i decided it wasn’t the last. With shrimps, fish, chicken tenders in fragrant coconut soup and rice noodles, i really enjoyed this light textured dish to bits.
I was surprised to see ‘Grilled Haloumi’ on the menu, but was eager to try it. The dish was a platter of roast veggies, chunk of haloumi paired with tangy tomato sauce (that made a wonderful difference), like the section it comes under (soul food) it was good but hands down the next dish was a clear winner – ‘Lamb Rib and Broad Bean Tagine’ with stewed apricots and mint couscous, this dish blew my mind, the perfectly tender juicy meat and delectable gravy was one dish I finished till the very last existence of it in my bowl.
The mini burgers served with fries where a delight to see when they arrived, just when we thought burgers couldn’t be healthy chef explained us about what lay in front of us- ‘The Green Burger’ with caramelized onion and feta; ‘Chicken Katsu’ with horseradish and grain mustard relish. Well I loved the Katsu burger more which had deep fried Japanese style crispy fried chicken stuffed between the buns.
From their section Local love, they served us ‘Kaddu ka Dalcha’ with Baghara Khana & ‘Kacche Gosht ki Biryani’ too full to taste any of it, we gave it a pass, but undoubtedly ITC does serve some great Biryani. (i don’t need to try this to say it, we all love their Biryani)
We winded up our meal with Sweet Adventures like ‘Pavilion Chocolate Fudge’ which was presented so beautifully, it almost broke my heart to destroy it, but worth every bite, especially the jaggery caramel sauce which was a treat to my taste buds.
We also had a taste of ‘Crème Brulee with Apricot Fig Biscotti’ served with some floral litchi honey and lime elixir. Well crème brulee is one of my favorite desserts and I thoroughly enjoyed it but… I will have to recommend the chocolate fudge as a MUST TRY. So go ahead and spend some gala time with your loved ones and taste these delicacies and much more.
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Location: Deccan Pavilion, ITC Kakatiya, Begumpet.