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Exotic gastronomy for you


Regional, international and exotic are the new buzzwords to define high-end dining across the country. To sample the freshest fare from scenic locales in Japan, Mexico, Southeast Asia and most importantly, Italy, well-heeled food connoisseurs are combing through gourmet restaurants and fine-dine options that promise an ‘authentic’ experience.

It’s no longer about cherishing a broadly-defined Italian or Malaysian meal, but delving deep into the geographies and cultures and relishing delicacies from Apulia in Italy, or the Peranakan cuisine of Southeast Asia, or the Obanzai Ryori home-style cooking from Kyoto in Japan. Taking ‘exotic’ to a whole new level are delights such as handmade Orecchiette, capunti pasta, braid pasta (with deep sea prawns and zucchini flowers), tartufo ice-cream, laksa, rendangs, tuna tataki, baked unagi, vegetable sukiyaki and other dishes that appear eye-catching and non-native.

“Indian foodies are all well-travelled and hence acclimatised with various cuisines. Italian cuisine, for example, is all to do with the ingredients and aromas used. Local cuisine in a region such as Apulia in Southern Italy is based on fresh, seasonal produce like extra virgin olive oil, seafood. It is vastly different from the food of Northern Italy which is more dairy-based. A region-specific fare is based on simple, high-quality ingredients and provides an authentic feel,” says Chef Vittorio Greco, Italian Masterchef at Ottimo for ITC Hotels.

Understanding and enjoying the nuances of region-specific cuisine from across the globe is set to be a key driver in the food services market in India, which is slated to grow to Rs 4.98 trillion by 2021, as per the data by the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) and Technopak.

Says Executive Chef Anurudh Khanna from Shangri-La Hotel, Bengaluru, “With the kind of culinary exposure Indians get these days, they are becoming cognizant of unique dining experiences. Apart from exploring cuisine from Calabria (in Italy), we are doing Asian barbeques and Sinchuan specialty. We also look forward to exploring regional Japanese cuisine from Kyoto.”

Apart from the yearning to try out authentic cuisines, food connoisseurs get attracted by fare that is low in fats, carbs, salt and which is often gluten-free.

“Thai cuisine. for example. is quite close to Indian food with its signature red and green curries and the use of coconut and chillies. At the same time, essential ingredients like lemongrass and galangal ensure the authenticity of the dish,” says Mahesh Ramasamy, Executive Chef at The Tamara Coorg.


Understanding the nuances of region-specific cuisine from across the globe is key driver in Indian food services

Food connoisseurs get attracted by fare low in fats and the yearning to try out authentic cuisines

Source: DNA India

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