Culinary Tea at Above sea level, The Rain Tree hotel, Chennai


A whole menu from soup to dessert made using this humble yet the most amazing flavour!

If you are looking at experiencing what it is to use tea in your food, this is the place you need to head to Above Sea Level at The Raintree Hotel, Chennai till the 25th of November.

Deep blue sea soup made using mixed seafood broth, lemon grass and seaweed and offcourse tea had a very Asian flavour and had a very subtle tea flavour just when it slips down your mouth.

The appetizers:

Blue tea dahi kebab ( this was my favourite) with tea caviar does need a special mention the flavours were rich and just melted in the mouth.

The tea infused kodo Millet almond cake with ginger Power and colonge tea was a good addition with a nice crunch, it’s a little dry and is suppose to be like that according to the chef. It is more like the the almond tea cake.

Hibiscus tea crushed shrimp with tea Labneh and matcha foam was another favourite of mine with excellent blend and awesome subtle flavour.

Pepper mint tea smoked Gilawat kebab is a meat kebab. The fresh flavour of smoked meat made the dish flavourful and the way it was presented, was a total show stopper!

Main course:

Black tea sousvide chicken with portabella mushroom, blue tea ricotta and spicy mushroom sauce makes the dish flavourful. This is served on a bed of risotto and complements the flavour.

Pumpkin and ricotta in red tea ravioli with roasted ramesco sauce and cashew nut. This was my personal favourite as far as the main course was concerned. The humble pumpkin flavour was rich.

The ending was sweet and a fun combination!

Peach and passion fruit tea sorbet was subtle yet full of flavour.

The matcha tea cheese cake bar was made like a creme brulee with flavour of matcha tea.

For friends who have not visited above sea level, the view is amazing the service is excellent.

Rajasthan Dairies – Jaipur and Udaipur.

Incredible India!

Rajasthan has history, palaces, forts and the Royals.

We visited two cities Jaipur and Udaipur. We were lucky to have friends in Jaipur who welcomed us with open arms.

We landed in the afternoon and had a fantastic h\nome cooked lunch at our friends house.

Evening to midnight was spent at chohki Dhani. This place is vibrant, with loads of activities like, dance, music, astrologers, wrestlers, camel rides, sumptuous authentic meal and more.

Next day after the the Rawat kachori breakfast, we planned the city tour with the Albert museum, Birla temple, masala chowk and Amer fort.


The Amer fort is one of its kind and a must visit. It is beyond ones imagination how such a fort was build hundreds of years ago. The Sheesh Mahal for imaginary stars and 12 apartments for 12queens. You can find it all here.

By now it was evening and time to start our journey to Udaipur!

Another beautiful small city with history in every place.

We stayed at the club Mahindra, Udaipur. The resort is good with a cool pool and lots of activities for the Children. The food is decent, but my suggestion avoid having lunch here. Breakfast and dinner is good.

Since the resort is 10+KMS away it is most of the time challenging to commute. Though ola and uber has services in Udaipur they do not come towards club Mahindra. If you are lucky you might get a cab totally by fluke. Share auto’s are available on the main road.

After a sumptuous breakfast at club Mahindra we started our site seeing by boat ride at Lake pichola. This one was splendid, the water was clean and the view to city place, the Taj and other places and forts were beautiful.

Next was the city palace. I was totally in awe with the grandeur and architecture of this palace. Each room and structure was constructed keeping in mind each person’s needs. Amazingly there were lifts and wheelchairs in those days, can you believe and also western toilets! I could endless talk about this massive dream palace.

It was 3pm and we had not yet had our lunch. I was very particular about having a good Rajasthani non vegetarian lunch. We headed to Rajwadi bites. I must say the Lal maas was the best there. The malai chicken kebab was rich and loaded with flavour.

Our next stop was at sahelion ki Bari, just a simple not maintained garden. Not worth the time.

The Fateh Sagar lake was our next destination and it was beautiful. The sunset is something to watch.

We headed back the club Mahindra Udaipur to only be enjoying the Navratri garba and the puppet show.

Dal Bhati is the traditional food of Rajasthan. We had a mini workshop about the variety of Bhati’s that are available in club Mahindra, they had raagi, stuffed and a few more varieties of Bhati. Chef Abhishek was kind enough to take us through the making of the various Bhati’s.

The next day was totally devoted to some shopping at the hathi pole market. This market has some beautiful clothing and accessories!

Dinner reservation was at the famous Ambrai. This restaurant is famous for its view that over looks the pichola lake and the city place. The view at night with lights on is breathtaking. The food is good with live music and polite service.

We bid Udaipur good bye and headed back to Jaipur the pink city.

City palace, jantar mantar, queens market, hawa Mahal and the Johri bazaar was a half day trip at Jaipur.

Next that followed was a mid weekend dinner at Jaipur ADDA. An awesome evening with some superb collection of live hindi songs made the roof top dinning even more fun. The food and drinks were amazing. Good news is the place is open till 2am.

Few places and food that were in my pending list was covered on the final day before we left back home.

Lassiwala one amazing place where people come from all over the city and he is sold out by 1pm. The lassi was subtle and served in earthern cups.

We have all heard about dal Bhati, but kheema Bhati was a must try for me being a non vegetarian and I must say it was yummy. The Bhati is stuffed with kheema and has to be had with meat gravy. Again a must try if you are in Jaipur and a hardcore non vegetarian.

Saying goodbye to Jaipur was not easy, specially because we had friends who loved us. But all good things have to come to an end and this surely ended too soon!

Till my next trip/ vacation/ holiday bye bye!

Wok Monk, Anna Nagar, Chennai.

Wok monk serves Asian cuisine, but not like any other place.

We tasted many unique dishes that we have not tasted before.

It is amazing how food scene is changing in Chennai.

Chef Ilan and Bablu did 10days of travel to a few countries and managed to replicate many dishes from there and I think they have done an extremely decent job.

We started our lunch with Cendol champion, a south east Asian delicacy with a mix of mung bean flour Jelly, coconut milk and Palm sugar syrup. It was quite a refresher.

Iced Milo recovery shake. Had chunks of jelly.

Corn and water chestnut dumplings a perfect balance of crunchiness from water chestnut and softness from corn steamed to perfection.

Mixed vegetable crystal dumplings assorted vegetables with white seasoning stuffed in potato starch.

Broccoli and spinach dumpling broccoli spinach and coriander season with Chili steam to perfection

Soupy veg dumplings these are available in both variations you get it in vegetarian as well as non vegetarian.

Spicy chicken and celery dumplings

Prawn har Gao

Bakso soup

Sambal prawn

Ayam 36 goreng

Goan Saraswat food festival in The Park, Chennai.

Goan Saraswat food festival in The Park, Chennai.

Chef Sarita Chavan is a celebrity chef from Goa and has made her to the top in a male dominated industry in her times!

Her food is made with love warmth and with the authentic flavours of Goa. She has carried with her most of the masalas and spices that are difficult to find in Chennai.

If you are looking at experiencing the Unique cuisine of Goa in Chennai!
Head to The park at Chennai. You can find most of the dishes that you will find in a Goan Saraswat home.

We started our evening with:
Galmo Danger / prawn cutlet, I must say this is unique this cutlet has fresh Prawns and masala no mashed potatoes or any extras , texture was excellent!

Fish cutlet was to die for, perfectly spiced with Goan masala and shallow fried.

The dry prawn kismur is a not to miss experience.

Fish rava fry felt like I went back to my childhood days. My father would bring this fish from the Madgaon fish market and my mother could cut clean marinate and fry the fish for us. It was nostalgic for me, the taste was incredible.

The mutton chops made using the Bombay Goa masala that is close to the chefs heart, had the love it in.

The prawn curry made with drumsticks is a typical Saraswat way of making the gravy. The drumstick does not over power the prawn but compliments it with its subtle flavour.

The sol kadhi is my all time favourite. The kokum fruits from which the juice is extracted and added to the spiced coconut milk has its own flavour that cannot be explained but only experienced!

The poee/ poi was flown in specially for this unique festival.

The finale was to linger in our mouth forever with Bebinca, Dudhi and Sabudana Kheer made the Goan way!

Chennai is prepared to experience to taste the various unique flavours of India and this surely is not the one to miss!

Special thanks to chef Ashutosh for bringing this unique festival to Chennai.

Chef Rohit Bhartula and Prasanna for your warm services.

Last but not the least very special thanks to chef Sarita for giving Chennai the taste and unique flavours of Goan food!

Seven sisters cuisine, northeast food festival at Raintree, Chennai.

For me this is comfort food!

Northeastern part of India has unique food with mind blowing flavours. Yes, it is a acquired taste. But come on, we cannot experience such good in Chennai often!

Don’t miss the chance to experience some amazing food with unique flavours of the less spoken part of our beautiful country!

It is called the seven sisters cuisine at The Raintree, St. Mary’s Road, Chennai.

The food is excellent, made from the heart. Chef Aluaangma aka Aran has got many of the ingredients with him, since they are not easily available in Chennai. Chef Aluaangma has worked with many big brands, but when he realised how underestimated the food of his own region is, he decided to explore the length and breath of his home place and present us with the flavours of northeast.

We started with the finger millets soup. It has a creamy flavour and was full of soul.

The salad and starter’s and salads could not get more authentic the chives fritters, the dry prawn salad and the potato salad.

The main course is something that cannot be explained the Assamese fish curry made using seabass was amazing the Tripura pork curry was yummy the country chicken was full of flavour. I personally love the bamboo shoot flavour, I know, I know it’s an acquired flavour. I just love it!

They do have a wide variety of vegetarian food too!


The dessert was equally amazing, it was a perfect end to the most amazing dinner!

Bharat Bistro, Chennai

Bharat Bistro is a place that will serve you food from entire Bharat/ India, but with a awesome twist!

Come experience the new age food of Bharat/ India.

To start with this place is tastefully done with the national bird of India lighting up the place. The Ambience is chic.

The finger licking food is made by chef Kamal who has all the way come from Delhi to Chennai to give us some awesome food experience!

The Rawas rava fry was absolutely mind blowing this is a must try fish. Rawas is indian salmon or Kala in Tamil. The masala was totally yum and the rava coating was perfect.

Mamaji prawn kebab was soft and succulent and had a cute presentation in a cutting glass.

Lamb Galouti burger how much more indian could this get. The tiny Galouti kebab were served like Vada pavs topped by tiny fried green chillies.

Potli samosa with cheese and corn was yummy and cheesy. The tiny filler was given filled with chutney to fill the potli just before you pop them to your mouth to experience a burst of flavour.

How would you like your kachori stuffed with lamb meat! I thought it had a stunning taste and texture.

The butter chicken samosa blew my mind totally.

Lamb sheek Kurkure kebab was taking it totally to the next level of flavour and creativity.

The desserts were amazing too!

Gulab jamun cheese cake

Mothichur ladoo kheer.

The desserts were all stunning and just gave the best finale to the food experience.

Bharat Bistro is located a cenatoph road and opens on 1st week of October.

Bhangra – Best Punjabi food in Chennai.

Bhangra, if you are looking for some great Punjabi food with home cooked type of flavour!

So, this is a long pending visit to this awesome place. Long pending only because the distance from my house to this place is long.

We started our early Sunday dinner with sugar cane juice. I love sugarcane juice and unlike Mumbai I do not have it in the streets of Chennai. So this was exciting for me, since I was having one after a really long time.

Since we are foodies we typically like to taste almost everything on the menu and the only way we could do this is by ordering for the non-vegetarian kebab platter.

The kebabs were succulent and perfectly spiced. Malai kebab, sheekh kebab, Afghani kebab, tandoori chicken.

The lacha paratha was made of wheat and I personally prefer wheat over maida. They were flaky and went well with the kebabs and gravy.

Dal Makhani offcourse one of the best that I have had in Chennai.

Mutton rara the meat was soft and succulent and well laced with the gravy.

We had two desserts. The Kheer and moong dal halwa.

The saffron kheer was outstanding with subtle flavour of saffron and perfectly sweetened.

The moong dal halwa was warm and perfect for the rainy weather outside.

Special mention to the pudina chutney that has chopped onions and a tangy flavour.

The host Navtej ji treats every customer, as a guest and that I think makes a lot of difference.