Showing posts with label Michelin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Michelin. Show all posts

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Full of Spice Supper Club by chef Alfred Prasad at Kew Gardens

Full of Spice SupperClub Kew Gardens - The Orangery
Nowadays supper clubs come in all shapes, sizes, themes and all kind of venues, but nothing beats The Orangery in famous Kew Gardens in London.  What a breathtaking venue for dinner.  Kew Gardens is an internationally important botanical research and education institution located next to the river Thames, 10 miles west of central London.

This Summer Kew Gardens have put together a fantastic celebration of spices, The Full of Spice Festival at the Royal Botanic Gardens from May to September 2015. The Festivities include series of talks, performances and workshops in the amazing Spice Exchange. There is a spice Mix Supercomputer, special spicy Rickshaws, giant spices cultures and inflatables dotted around the gardens. They also have a  pop-up botanical bar, guided tour for a fascinating look at Kew's spicy plants, sample spiced breads, spicy Saturdays (how spices were brought across continents and oceans), Spicy Sundays music sessions and a couple of supper clubs. 

Last week was Michelin-starred chef Alfred Prasad turn to showcase some delicious designed spice-infused Indian tasting menu.  The Orangery which usually a cafe and restaurant was transformed into a beautiful candle lighten venue, that framed so well the evening proceedings. The service, provided by Peyton and Byrne, was friendly and welcoming. I noticed that some diners had, at times, to nudge the staff to get their paired wines.

The menu was aromatic, elegant and delicately spiced. Perfect balanced and nothing too harsh for the palate.  In my view, there was two highlights: the veal, which was perfectly cooked and seasoned, I especially liked the coconut shavings touch.  The other guests seemed to like it too.  The second dish was the mustard spiced fish and seafood, a dish full of flavour and textures.

 All in all, It was a very pleasant dinner in fantastic surroundings. Next Full of Spice supper club is on the 16th July 2015 by chef Atul Kochhar.  Tickets cost £60/person for 7 courses tasting menu and the flight of wine at £27/person, very generous glasses!  There's also a wine/champagne list at very reasonable prices.

more info email:
t: +44 (0)207 7475925

The meal

Welcome drink: Spicy Gin Cucumber Lemonade (gin, lemonade, pinch of cayenne pepper, lemon slices, thin slices of cucumber and ice)

 left: Réserve de Gassac Rose Vin de Pays De L'herault 2013, right: Pani Puri (crip shell) filled with spiced chickpeas, fresh and dried pomegranate, yogurt with pickling spices, pomegranate molasses chutney - light and tangy starter

Chef Alfred Prasad presented all dishes as they were served
spiced raw scallops, lime cucumber, red onions, watermelon, spring onions and grated Mango-ginger (curcuma)  a root of the ginger family and closed related to turmeric with raw mango taste, was fresh and topped with edible flower

vegetarian version of the scallops - avocado, tomato,
lime cucumber, red onions, watermelon, spring onions and grated Mango-ginger (curcuma)
mustard paste herb-crusted Seabass (base), mustard temperated white crab (middle) topped with prawn tempura in mustard oil

 chef in the kitchen

Juicy and tender pink, black and green peppercorn crusted veal onglet; smoked aubergine mash with chilli flakes and toasted coriander seeds

Palate cleanser: watermelon granita with Himalayan pink salt - an acquired taste
Aromatic Chicken Vindaloo, seasonal asparagus and green chilli pulao, pickled chilli raita. The curry wasn't too hot, it was definitely a toned down version to pleased the crowd - and it did the job. I liked the big pieces of chilli in the rice - again the chilli was mild.
vegetarian main: paneer dumpling with cottage cheese Kotfta and in Korma and peanut paste  sauce - amazing!

Kashmiri kahwa tea : Saffron tea with flaked almonds - nice!
Poached milk dumplings with pistachios, saffron strands and rose petals - nice not too sweet finish to our meal
Until next time why not join me on  InstagramTwitter and Facebook…X

Friday, 18 July 2014

France Dordogne Valley, Brive-La-Gaillarde

Nous sommes trop gâtés! We finally arrived at Brive, the last leg of this wonderful and hectic adventure.  Brive is  the biggest commune in the Correze department. The medieval centre is mainly a commercial district with retail shops and various eateries. What better way to start a new chapter by going to a Michelin star restaurant, La Table d'Olivier. A small establishment located in the town centre of Brive, the restaurant cater for 24 covers a night. It's run by 30 years old chef, Pierre Neveu and his master pastry chef and waitress wife, Fanny. A team of only two dishing out fantastic food in Brive.
On arrival we were greeted with a smile by Fanny and directed to our perfect set table.  Everything was good, from appetisers to desserts with a succession of scents, textures and taste of exquisite foods presented like piece of art on our plates. The quality ingredients with perfect and precise cooking  excites the taste buds. A refined and discrete service in a warm atmosphere. Bravo !
wine: Sancerre blanc, Domaine du Carrou, 2012
 Bright and intense colour with gold highlights. Elegant and subtle aromas of citrus (pink grapefruit and lemon) but mostly yellow peach . Perfect acidity and refreshing notes of sweet pear, provide a pleasurable palate. Great match and accompaniment to the foie gras and the lamb dishes. Their wine list is quite expensive.

Starter: foie gras de canard, rhubarb, strawberries (mara de bois) and pepper
a delectable and rich foie gras cooked in low temperature and served cold, with strawberry compote and liquor and rhubarb and pepper cream.
Main: a melt in the mouth lamb cooked sousvide,  mini leeks, garlic black, emulsion of rosemary, reduction jus served with the most delicious mash potatoes.

desserts: macaroon, black pepper ice cream - to die for!, rhubarb candy.
modern and fresh take to cooking using quality, fresh and local ingredients. Perfect!
prices : gourmet menu at € 39 (starter + main course + dessert to choose à la carte) night; tasting menu € 57 (6-course); lunch menu (weekdays only) 23 (starter + main course + dessert)
 La Table d'Olivier - booking recommended
3 Rue Saint-Ambroise, 19100 Brive-la-Gaillarde, France
Phone:+33 5 55 18 95 95
Saturday Market in Brive 
This market is a social and shopping event happening in the city centre. People come from all over the county to buy fresh ingredients and specialist products.
Apart from fruits and vegetables, poultry, cheeses, these markets offer a wide range of local produce such as mushrooms, liqueurs, foie gras ...  Brive la Gaillarde market also offer a wide variety of clothing, shoes, hosiery, haberdashery, leisure, tableware, furniture ...

figs stuffed with foie gras - amazing texture and taste and  local seller a service with a smile.
a family business

The region is well known by their walnut plantations and specialist restaurants, museums, local markets, walnut farms, craft merchants, and distillery using the  Périgord walnuts.
In 2002 the region won the Appellation d'Origine (AOC) "Noix du Périgord" for fresh walnuts, dried walnuts and walnut kernels.

Denoix distillery

Located in the centre of Brive, Denoix is a family run business founded in 1839, nowadays is headed by Madame Sylvie Denoix-Vieillefosse.  Their drinks are based on walnuts and other fruits all guaranteed to be free from colouring, preservatives and added flavour. Their recipes and method hasn't changed since the 19th century, to retain their heritage and  know-how in addition to quality and taste.  Above we tasted their famous Supreme Denoix. They also make the Violet Mustard since 1986.

 the copper cauldrons and the century-old tuns that mature liqueurs mysteriously and silently.

Ferme Auberge Moulin a l'Huile de Noix

This farm house is situated near Martel about 30 minutes from Brive and the building dates from the XV century. They produce the majority of the food they serve in the restaurant. Their menu follow the seasons , home cooking style and it's fresh.
Asparagus soup with sourdough farm bread and walnuts!
green salad with white asparagus and smoked duck and the farm cookbook
grilled lamb chops with a tasty creme d'ail (creamy garlic sauce), cream, lots of garlic, onion, rosemary, flour, salt & pepper. simple and very enjoyable.

duck confit on a bed of crushed potatoes and a marvellous desert! 
dessert: acacia beignet, walnut souffle topped with meringue, walnut cake and chocolate sauce - amazing!!

above Madame Marie-Claude Castagne, the owner taking orders.
the aftermath to our meal....
making walnut oil
walnut grove

The farm specialised in foie gras, duck and lamb, walnuts, walnut oil and walnut appetiser
Price: between 18 et 24 € and children : 8 €
Ferme Auberge Moulin a l'Huile de Noix
 Route St Denis, 46600 Martel, France 
Phone:+33 5 65 37 40 69
 PS: I got the farm cookbook - beautifully photographed, inspirational and glorious recipes. 

That is the end of my Dordogne adventure for now at least. I hope to go back one day it's such a beautiful and uplifting region of France. 
Back in the UK : I made Gateau aux Noix with walnut oil and Denoix liquor with black pepper ice cream - inspired by Madane Marie-Claude Castagne, Madame Sylvie Denoix, and Michelin diner at 'La Table d'Olivier' - amazing!

Disclosure: I was a guest of Brive Vallee Dordogne Tourist Board . I received no further remuneration. I retained full editorial control over this and other related posts. all views are my own.

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