“If it isn’t exquisite, then it isn’t dining”
Back in 2009, free spirit and fellow foodie Shubhankar Dhar decided he needed to give up his maverick ways and choose a career. He followed his stomach which was also the way to his heart. Yes, he chose food. This was how Esplanade forayed into our city. And we are grateful for it.
According to Shubhankar, “At The Esplanade, we endeavour to keep alive the tradition of Kolkata cuisine in the way it is meant to be. Apart from the variety of dishes that are synonymous with Bengali cooking, we offer age old delicacies that graced the tables of the colonial sahibs, in the days of yore”
He explains his thinking behind the menu by saying, “I wanted to burst the 3 myths that seem to surround Bengali Cuisine, 1) That its only about fish, 2) the food is always sweet, and 3) we can only cook in mustard oil.”
In true “Zamindaar Haweli” style, Esplanade aims at catering to the palattes across the regions of India, not just Bengal. That said, no one can question a Bengalis love for food. Their love for food is legendary with food that is a wholesome affair, taking in the five basic tastes of astringent, bitter, sweet, sour and hot.
Keeping this in mind, Esplanade serves some of the most authentic dishes of West Bengal. The Basket of Fries is an assortment of crisply fried vegetables and had distinct flavours. The Prawn special of the day was delicately cooked prawns meat served in the shell itself that was absolutely fantastic.
Words fail to describe how good the Malai Chingri Curry is here. The mellow gravy, the rich and fatty prawn meat and the notes of sweet and savoury flavour — this dish is simply too magnificent to describe. The Kasha Mangsho which is dry meat cooked in spicy flavour is Bengal’s most famous mutton dish and were fireworks in our mouth! The flavours are subtle while the real taste of the dish comes out when you bite into the tenderly cooked mutton that falls off the bone.
No Bengali meal is complete without the ubiquitous Mishti Doi with its thick custard like consistency and not too overtly sweet, Esplanade’s Mishti Doi will steal your heart away.
At Esplanade, a meal isn’t just a meal. For Bengalis, it’s nostalgia and and memories of the streets of Calcutta while for the others it’s the joy of a meal that will touch your heart and leave you with an everlasting memory.
What we had:
Basket of Fries
Malai Chingri Curry