Dashanzi an area in North Eastern Beijing in the Chaoyang district, which is well known for its artistic community and architecture which boasts in-operational military buildings in unique styles. Built in the 1950s as a part of a joint China and East Germany program, the area is known for encouraging contemporary and innovative art styles, which deviate from traditional Chinese art.
Why, you ask, are we giving you a lesson into art history? Well, the JW Marriott Juhu in Mumbai has just opened the doors to a new restaurant inspired by the Beijing area named – you guessed it – Dashanzi.
Progressive Modern Cuisine
Inspired by the contemporary approach to art in Beijing’s Dashanzi, JW Marriott’s Dashanzi is serving “progressive modern Chinese and Japanese cuisine.” Along with eclectic decor it boasts a live sushi and sashimi bar, an interactive dessert table, classic cocktails with Asian twists and of course, exquisite Japanese and Chinese fare.
Commenting on the new restaraunt, Pavithran Nambiar, General Manager, JW Marriott Mumbai Juhu said, “We have witnessed a discernible demand for Asian food with guests getting increasingly familiar with modern and progressive cuisines. We are thrilled to add another restaurant and lounge to our wide-array of culinary offerings. The mesmerizing ambiance with two exemplary expat chefs leading the restaurant, will hallmark the memorable experience that Dashanzi is set to bring to our guests.”
The Fine Dining Experience
Visiting Dashanzi earlier this week, we immediately saw how the contemporary approach translates to the ambience. While towering paper dragons greet you at the entrance, the inside is elegant and refined with white chairs, subdued lighting, wooden floors and gold accents.
The menu was equally refined with Asian delicacies like Wild Mushroom Rice, Steamed Local Sea Bass with Assam Sauce, Prawn with Shiitake dumplings, Edamame and Truffle dumplings as well as Sushi, Sashimi, Nigiri and Maki Rolls.
We began our experience with two of the restaurant’s signature cocktails; the Bloody Miyagi and the Pomo Basil. The Pomo Basil was incredibly refreshing and uplifting, combining the sweet taste of pomegranate juice with a kick of vodka. The Bloody Miyagi, which is an Asian interpretation of the Bloody Mary, had fresh tomato juice and a strong, biting Wasabi syrup; perfect for those who like strong, unapologetic drinks.
Then came assorted non-vegetarian and vegetarian dim sum which were arranged prettily on two separate white slabs which highlighted the range of colours of the dim sum. From the vegetarian platter, we loved the edamame and truffle dim sum which had a smooth, creamy filling of rich edamame and the mushroom crystal and kaffir lime pesto dumplings which blended an earthy mushroom filling with a kaffir lime sauce which was zesty yet mild.
From the non-vegetarian dim sum basket we were particularly impressed with the prawn and coriander dumplings with a succulent prawn stuffing which were also topped with the kaffir lime pesto. The chicken and truffle siu mai was also a win with the truffle lending the chicken a rich, decadent flavour. The Chilean sea bass dim sum is another must try; topped with caviar it offers a fun balance of textures.
Next up was an assorted range of sushi and sashimi)which arrived at our table in a dramatic cloud of dry ice. A block of ice set at the back of the platter which ensured that the sushi and sashimi remained at an ideal temperate through the meal. From the sashimi, we’d especially recommend the pink salmon and the Hamachi, which is Yellow Tail; both were cut to a perfect thickness. Meanwhile from the sushi section, we’d recommend the California Rolls and the Salmon and Tuna nigiri.
After this delectable assortment of appetisers, we moved on to the mains; Barbequed Lamb Chops and the Steamed Local Sea Bass in Lotus Leaf. The Steamed Local Sea Bass was conclusive evidence that the chefs at Dashanazi are complete geniuses when it comes to seafood; it was soft and practically melted in our mouths. The star of our mains, however, were the Lamb Chops which were lightly seasoned and tender.
The Grand Finale
After we polished off our mains, our server whisked away our plates, cutlery…and then the table cloth? Smiling, he explained that we were going to be served the Freezing Chocolate Balloon. Great, we thought; but where has our table cloth gone?
Our questions were answered when he spread a pristine white mat over the table and a chef rolled out a cart with an assortment of sauces, a few instruments and – most intriguingly – a massive chocolate sphere. Two chefs proceeded to create a work of chocolate art right in front of us by spreading the sauces across the mat, followed by laying the chocolate ball in the center and pouring dry ice smoke into it.
The chef then astounded us by smashing the sphere on the table; it cracked open to reveal a bed of chocolate brownie, ice cream and micro greens. We proceeded to pick up spoons and devour the whole table; the chocolate brownie was rich, the ice cream creamy and cool and the chocolate sphere itself was much like eating slabs of rich chocolate.
We also loved the accompanying sauce spread across the mat; there was a rich mango sauce and, of course and indulgent chocolate sauce. You can check out the chocolate work of art in the video below. If you’re inspired by that, why not head to Dashanzi yourself? Enjoy sushi, sashimi and reward your dedicating eating with the Freezing Chocolate Balloon.