Chiu Chow Festival @ The Lantern, The Ritz Carlton Bangalore

The Chiu Chow Festival at the Lantern, Ritz Carlton Bangalore showcases the best of cuisine from the Chaoshan region in the east of Guangdong province in Mainland China. They are known for healthy Vegetarian and Seafood dishes. Chef Luo Haiming from The Ritz-Carlton, Shenzhen presents treasures of Chiu Chow recreated right here in Bangalore.

We started our progressive dinner tasting with the Hot and Sour Szechwan Soup with Shrimps, Scallops, Chicken and Mushroom. We followed that up with the Pork and Lotus Root soup. For this delicacy, the Pork meat and Lotus root is steamed for 4 hours after adding them to Pork stock to render its final strong flavour. This was undoubtedly one of the best dishes in the menu.

I paired some Chandon Brut with the rest of the courses. Chef Jeremy dropped by our table for a quick introduction and added to the exclusivity of the evening. The Spring Onion Rolls and the Seafood and Chicken Taro Spring rolls formed the first in the long chain of appetisers to arrive. The Dim sum Platter comprised of an assortment of the Chicken, Seafood and Lobster Caviar Pockets. The Lobster Caviar Pockets are my personal favourite and I order it every time I dine at the Lantern. The dim sums were cooked just perfect and blended with the extra spicy Chilli Paste served as a condiment. The popular Char Sui was the final jewel in the crown and its tangy yet sweetish taste lingered long after consumption.

We were extremely well taken care of by Keerthi and the Restaurant Manager, Nitin. Before starting with our Main Course, Keerthi served us Lantern’s Signature cocktail-The Lantern which is an eclectic blend of Indian Spices infused in a Vodka and Orange Juice blend. The strong aroma of the five Indian spices makes this unique cocktail one of the most sought after at the Ritz Carlton, Bangalore.

We started our Mains with a generous serving of the Spicy King Prawn, a Wok-Fried dish with crispy shells cooked in Garlic and Green Pepper. Its strong and authentic asian taste stood out and was undoubtedly the show stopper of the evening. The Steamed Scallops with Rice Noodles and Garlic formed the perfect balance after the King Prawns. The Burnt Garlic Egg Fried Rice served next with the Pan Fried Seasonal Fish with Honey Jus reminded me of the essential flavours Chinese cuisine is reputed for. The Chicken with Shallot and Garlic Soya Sauce and the Braised Lamb with Garlic shoot formed the final contenders of the evening, each standing out in their own areas of flavour and aroma. The generous use of Garlic and other spices distinguish this cuisine from others that we are so used to experience in India. This entire menu is something that has not been tried out anywhere in India before, and is a sure hit with its spice-loving crowd.

The name of our Dessert was not revealed by Keerthi until the very last minute and we were asked to guess its constituents. It was a deconstructed Mango Pudding with Sago in Coconut Milk which is a delicacy in itself. The sweetness of the pudding and its unconventional liquid form is definitely a foodie’s delight. Its texture is so creamy, that it melts in your mouth instantaneously. With all its myriad strong and mild Asian Flavours, The Chiu Chow Festival is sure to win the hearts of Bangaloreans. This festival is on-going for Lunch and Dinner till the 24th April at The Lantern, Ritz Carlton. For Reservation please call: +91 80 4914 8000.

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