Taste of Italy at the Hilton

Chef Andrea Spurio is young and energetic; his food reflects that youthfulness and what contemporary Italian food is all about. His plates are bright and flavoursome and you can even eat the garnishes!

Bruschetta mista

Selezione di salumi misti; lamelle petto d'anatra con insalata 

Est, Hilton Chennai's 24-hour lobby cafe is a long way from Hilton Molino Stucky in Venice which is Chef Spurio's home turf. The platter of Bruschetta Mista brought the colours of Italy to the table - the garlic-rubbed toasted bread had been topped with mushrooms, diced tomatoes and roasted peppers. Then it was a medley of cold cuts - Parma ham, coppa, speck and salami. Pickled pearl onions, artichoke hearts and slices of gherkins were the perfect way to counteract the effects of all that salted meat along with the pillow-shaped gnocco fritto. The meat in the next dish, thinly sliced duck breast had just the faintest blush. Decorated with green beans and shavings of black truffle, it was bathed in a balsamic vinegar salad that livened up the flavours.

Spiedini di pollo - chicken skewers with Parmesan

Caprese con burrata

Caprese must be one of the simplest of salads and the burrata absolutely stole the show. So creamy and amply flavoured by the basil pesto yet toned down by the white balsamic vinaigrette and sweet cherry tomato halves.

Risotto mantecato al Prosecco doc con battuto di scampi e melissa - risotto with scampi and lemon balm

Orichietti con funghi

The risotto was lovely - long grains of rice cooked in Prosecco with plenty of scampi. The taste of lemon balm was delightful, punctuating the rice with zesty freshness. Chef Andrea's style of cooking is not restricted to any one region so there was even orichiette, ear-shaped pasta in a mixed mushroom sauce - yeah, there were lots of mixed mushrooms in the sauce.

Trancio branzina con variazione di funghi e salsa al Prosecco - broiled sea bass

Pollo alla diavola - devilled chicken

Sea bass with mushroom and Prosecco sauce was the first of the main courses. The fish had been broiled on its scales and we loved the fresh, firm flesh. Loved the juicy meat in Pollo alla Diavola or devil's chicken which was served with rösti that looked exactly like hash browns. The chicken was super tender and juicy. Yum!!

Pomodoro confit con ricotta - tomato confit with cottage cheese

Tomato confit with cottage cheese, mint and honey was a delicious offering; the creamy cheese, stuffed into tomato cups was especially appreciated by the lone vegetarian at our table.

Saffron pannacotta; il classico tiramisu

We were treated to 2 desserts - a bright saffron-hued pannacotta with raspberry coulis and a heady tiramisu. Don't forget to order that tiramisu - it's a fitting end to an Italian odyssey. 

The Taste of Italy is on till March 20th for lunch and dinner. The menu is à la carte and priced at 4500/++ for two.


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