Marylebone tastes Bengali Flavours
The days are getting shorter but that doesn’t mean we need to stop dining out! What’s better way to spend and evening than in a golden-lit, cosy restaurant, with plates full of belly-filling, soul-warming and mind-blowing food? Nothing. It was a rhetorical question anyway. But now that your stomach is visualising a feast, let us tell you about the newest culinary extravaganza this autumn: Chourangi.
This amazing restaurant offers a ground-breaking, out of this world dining experience and is here to bring you a feast of epicurean Indian excellence and little-known delights of East Indian cuisine: spicy, rich, flavourful and diverse. So leave your curry fantasies at the door. This unique restaurant is all about changing everything you thought you knew about food.
Kolkata (previously Calcutta) is the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal and has a history of over 300 years old and rich cultural heritage (just like UK) such as the Bengali Hindus elite, Muslims, and people coming from small communities like Parsi, Armenians, Anglo-Indians, Chinese, so we see an amalgamation of food but in Calcutta every flavour is different. The character, texture and flavour of everything cater to a wide range of taste buds: hot and spicy, minty, sweet and creamy, sweet and sour. This mix of rich and vibrant flavours is similar to the city itself. Bengali food is a culinary art that has evolved with time.
Fun fact: it is India’s friendliest city, India's oldest operating port and Cultural Capital of India.
Chourangi is an authentic Kolkata restaurant that offers “unexplored” flavours of India. It is named after Chowringhee, a historic district of Kolkata, and it is a project by Aditya Ghosh, Indian airline/tech entrepreneur, and chef-restaurateur Anjan Chatterjee, founder of Speciality Restaurants Ltd. The group has 130 restaurants in India and all over the world, such as the UA. Anjan Chatterjee is a qualified chef, who moved into advertising and then came back to his first love, the kitchen, and it was his dream for a long time to come to London.
Renowned culinary master, chef Surjan Singh (known as chef Jolly), will be the Culinary Director of the restaurant and is also head of Corporate Business Development at Specialty Hospitality UK.
And while everyone is saying they are already very experienced, they feel this is a new pitch for them, with new ballers and they are playing in England and particularly London city so they want to be more and more careful.
After lockdown, when things settled down, they were supposed to open on August 10th, but Mr. Chatterjee “landed the aircraft” and said “no, we are not ready” and they did all the training thoroughly to offer us the best possible dining experience.
Seeing as we’ve gone on the Indian theme, let’s first mention the decor, which is stunning.
Dim creamy golden lighting, a sleek long cocktail bar, a high ceiling with fans, a dining area furnished with a seductive mix of warm wood and leather, dark marble tables and rattan-teak chairs, all with a splash of art.
Perfect for any well-heeled professional blessed with good taste but also for families as well as for the deep-pocket elite.
An exemplary renditions of straightforward Indian cooking, these delectable offerings are quite simply dedication to cooking like you have never seen it before.
Health based food, wonderfully crafted and so fresh and full of flavours.
Chingri Cutlet - Prawns served with delicious creamed mustard dip - Absolutely outstanding – we loved the soft prawns encased in a wisp of a crispy crust.
Paanch Phoran Lamb Rack – Lamb makes a surprise appearance with a splendid rack, the peppery, meaty chunks winning a gold star in our books for their Calcutta’s 5-spices seasoning.
Calcutta Lamb Biryani - Welsh lamb, potatoes, quail egg, basmati rice, vetiver, sundried rose petals, saffron combined in a perfect dance of flavours.
Mocha Croquettes - banana blossom cutlet with a sweet and tangy flavour, it is a unique street culinary experience in Bengal. The banana blossom is chopped and mixed with a bit of mashed potato and is then coated with spiced breadcrumbs and deep fried.
Kasundi Kachumber – cherry tomatoes, cucumber, spring onion, radish, chillies, kasundi mustard
Kakra Chingri Bhapam- The rich, mellow steamed blue swimmer crab prawn parcel wrapped in lotus leaf.
Kamal Kakdi Chaat – lotus stem chips, roasted sweet potatoes, sweet-chilli-soy jaggery-chutney, yogurt
Tiger Prawn Malai Curry - authentically spiced curry is a sublime choice. Light with some coconut coming in and served inside a coconut shell, as an indication of the coconut delight that you are about to enjoy.
Nizami Malai Tikka - a tasty, royal cumin-scented chicken with aromatic spicesand creamed cheese, fragrant and tender.
Aam-kasundi Begun - Calcutta style aubergine cooked in tangy & sweet mango mustard - the aubergine serves up a luxurious tasting experience, but in a fun way.
Kalonji Naan, Paratha, Tandoori Roti – a selection of breads to complement your dishes harmoniously. Rarely have we seen such a perfect paratha, crisp on the outside, moist and fragrant on the inside and perfectly layered.
What also makes their dishes special is the culinary process - they roast the spices individually, they grind them, they steep them in mustard oil which is cooled down overnight so they use that oil to marinate. It is a complex process but they believe in authenticity.
Sondesh Puff - an incredibly nutty confection: a firm pastry base, with baked curd of cheese and dates, complimented by house made date vanilla ice cream and pecan nuts.
Mango Bhapa Doi - a sort of a deconstructed cheesecake, a steamed sweetened yoghurt with mango and shortbread on top, very light, creamy and refreshing.
As far as drinks go, it has a truly unique drinks list, starting with aromatics-infused cocktails made with Bengali ingredients, such as coconut, to extensive wine list and more.
Should you fancy a slice of something else, then Chourangi should be high up the list. Health based food, wonderfully crafted and so fresh with an amazing blend of flavours, it’s simply stunning.
It is truly a memorable experience to dine in a restaurant where the spice blends are really allowed to sing and service is as smooth as Indian silk.
Visit them for the sumptuous décor, the intimate atmosphere, and especially for food that doesn’t disappoint.
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