Flavors does all the talking at Jamavar

What happens when a person with around 40 years of experience continues to follow his passion and work relentlessly? They create magic. I recently met such person during my recent visit to Jamavar at The Leela Palace who is the epitome of simplicity and defines what passion means to someone. The person I am talking about is Chef Bhaskar Rao who hails from the town of Kakinada and he is the master of authentic Andhra cuisine.

Chef Bhaskar Rao

The signature Indian restaurant at The Leela Palace, Jamavar is currently showcasing the expertise of Chef Bhaskar Rao with his authentic Andhra preparation involving dishes from Rayalaseema, Coastal Andhra and Uttara Andhra (Northern Andhra Pradesh) until the 20th day of September.

Such is the magic of Chef Rao and his team that flavors does all the talking at Jamavar. The knack of detailing by Chef Rao is displayed in every food presented on the table and it is unmatchable. It is very rare that you appreciate the food, every time you put something in your mouth.

Chef Rao and his team at Jamavar gives you all the right reason to explore the fiery cuisine from Andhra Pradesh through an elaborate menu of unique flavors, textures and techniques. The Authentic Andhra Pradesh menu features some classic dishes that you just cannot afford to miss.

L-R: Chef Giri Manni, Chef Bhaskar Rao, Chef Farman Ali

Here are my top four picks at Aromas of Andhra Festival at Jamavar.

Venchina Mamsam

If you are a sucker for lamb, you are gonna be dancing after eating this slow cooked lamb with onion, tomato and homemade spices. If flavors could talk, this would have been the Prime Minister among the foods. Coming back to reality from the fantasy world, this is food at its best. I mean where do I even start? From cooking the lamb to perfection to getting spices bang on, it is nothing but sheer magic. Make sure you have a high tolerance level for spices and you are gonna this like never before.

Gongoora Mamsam

Another lamb dish makes it to my list of favorites at Jamavar. I think this is one of the best and unique lamb main-course I have ever had. What makes this dish stand out is the use of sorrel leaves in the preparation. Sorrel is a leafy green vegetable that has sharp, lemony taste and that’s exactly what makes this dish so different. The lemony taste of Sorrel leaves compliments lamb like Jack complimented Rose in Titanic. Hats off to Chef Rao for producing something that’s is a match made in heaven. The balance of correl leaves is very important in this dish, off-balance and it can be a disaster.

Mamsam Biryani

It has never been that three back to back top picks are a lamb based dish but there is always a first time. This Andhra style lamb biryani is undoubtedly one of the best I have ever had. The aroma of biryani that hit my soul as soon as Chef removed the lid of the pot is something unexplainable. It is the ultimate bliss a foodie can ask for. In last few years, I had forgotten the real strong aroma of Biryani that is produced by the special basmati rice and that beautiful colour of the lamb. This is a biryani where you neither need a raita nor any salan as sides.

Pootha Rekulu

This had to be in the list. It is a famous Andhra paper sweet made with rice starch, cardamom and clarified butter is an eye-pleasing white beauty. Pootha means coating and Reku means sheet. The detailing of this sweet reflects the skills the maker possesses. I have always heard about this ‘Paper Sweet’ but never had an opportunity before to taste it. As I unwrapped the paper sheets, it left me intrigued. It tastes as good as it looks. An absolute must try.

What    :  Aromas of Andhra
Where :  Jamavar, The Leela Palace
When   :  Till 20-September
Rating  : 4.5/5


Dreamer, Blogger, Writer, Foodie, Movie buff, Public Relations. Contributor for The New Indian Express and recently started a news publishing website 'Unkrate'.

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