Hakkasan – Restaurant Week India 2013

On the occasion of Restaurant Week that happened this year from the 1st to 10th April, a couple of my friends and I decided to check out Hakkasan – a world renowned, fine dine restaurant in the heart of Bandra, on Waterfield Road.

Hakkasan, India
An alluring confluence of traditional yet contemporary décor with dark stained English oak tables and serene blue ambient lights, Hakkasan definitely exudes a magnetic elegance that one cannot miss.

We’re a bunch of young individuals who love living the good life, and honestly, Hakkasan sans Restaurant Week is beyond our budget (as of now). So here was a chance to walk into a high-end, super fancy yet classy restaurant and eat really expensive food for an affordable price. The only disadvantage being a set menu therefore a limited one, but that’s what Restaurant Week’s all about.

The Hakkasan Experience
Personally, the soup selections (sweet corn chicken soup & vegetarian hot & sour soup) were hardly impressive, didn’t find anything authentic about the recipes nor the flavours. The appetizers on the other hand had mixed reactions. The chicken sesame balls’ flavour plus aftertaste wasn’t as appealing as we expected it to be, but the grilled shanghai dumplings and shimeji dumplings definitely made my taste buds tingle… just the way it should!

Within the main course, I loved the red snapper in asam sauce which was steamed perfectly enough to just melt in my mouth. The sanpei chicken clay pot was a safe bet, as the overall essence was something that seemed tried, tested and successful!

Vegetarians, specially the ones who love flavourful spices in their meals, had nothing to feel joyous about as the stir fried tofu and french beans was bland, almost tasteless and lacked that zingy factor.

We placed an order for the wok-tossed jasmine rice and the spring onions with egg fried rice (which was just about okay) and it thoroughly disappointed us with the absence of anything “jasmine” about the rice… neither aroma, nor flavour. *sigh*

According to me, the desserts took the cake! 😉 The chocolate mousse granita was absolutely divine… lovely texture and an ebullient aftertaste. I wasn’t too sure about the lemongrass and vanilla infused creme brulee while ordering it, but I’m glad I did. Although the composition reminded me greatly of caramel custard, it was the lemongrass flavour that turned it into an astoundingly memorable experience.

All in all, I’d say the restrictive menu and slight compromise in quality (which we noticed) didn’t leave us with the best memories. Maybe a generic visit (sans Reataurant Week India) could just change my perception. Someday…

Lunch: INR. 1000/-++ (per head)Dinner: INR. 1200/-++ (per head)

Here is the set menu:

Soups(Choice of Any One)

Sweet Corn Chicken SoupMade up of sweet corn kernels added to a soup base and seasoned.

Vegetarian Hot and Sour Soup (V)With bean curd skin, tofu, bamboo and shiitake mushrooms.

l to r: the sweet corn chicken soup & vegetarian hot & sour soup

Appetizers

(Choice of Any One)


Grilled Shanghai Dumplings

A pan-seared dumpling which goes through an initial stage of steaming. It comprises of a filling of prawns, chicken and Chinese chive.


Chicken Sesame Balls

Golden fried dim sum, made with a filling of chicken and oyster sauce which contributes to the sweetness of this dish. It has a sesame seeds’ coating, which gives it a beautiful nutty flavour.


Shimeji Dumplings (V)

Steamed to perfection and has a filling of shimeji mushrooms and snow peas’ mix.


Radish Puffs (V)

Golden fried, which has a light flaky exterior and the insides are made up of young white radish and sesame seeds.

Shimeji Dumplings 
Chicken Sesame Balls 
Radish Puffs

Entrees

(Choice of Any One)

Sanpei Chicken Clay Pot
With sweet basil, chillies & spring onions.

Steamed Red Snapper in Asam Sauce
Steamed fillets of snapper in a sour sauce, topped with okra.

Home-style Braised Aubergine with Shanghai Toban Chilli Sauce (V)
Young aubergine braised in a vegetable stock, finished with toban chilli sauce essentially made from chillies and fermented beans.

Stir-fry Tofu and French Beans (V)
A flavourful dish made up of peppers, pickled radish & peanuts. Stir-fried with black bean.


Sanpei Chicken Claypot 
Stir-fry Tofu & French Beans 
Steamed Red Snapper in Asam Sauce


Rice & Noodles
(Choice of Any One)

Spring Onion and Egg Fried RiceWok-tossed jasmine rice with egg and spring onions.

Vegetable Fried Rice (V)

Wok-tossed jasmine rice with corn and asparagus.

Hakka Noodles (V)

Hand-pulled with enoki mushrooms and Chinese chive.

Spring Onion & Egg Fried Rice

Desserts

(Choice of Any One)

Lemongrass and Vanilla Crème Brulee

A crème brulee infused with fresh lemongrass and vanilla.

Chocolate Mousse Granita

Sinful chocolate mousse served with a masala chai granita.

Selection of Ice Cream or Sorbet

Ice cream – Raspberry Ripple, Pistachio and Malted Chocolate.

Sorbets – Dark Chocolate, Mango and Blood Orange.

Chocolate Mousse Granita
A closer look at the Chocolate Mousse Granita 
Lemongrass & Vanilla Creme Brulee
Menu details courtesy: Restaurant Week India

Pictures courtesy: KA Hospitality & my below average phone camera 😛

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