Sunday, February 25, 2024



It was a memorable experience for us to dine at Avartana, the fine dining restaurant at the ITC Royal Bengal, Kolkata where we are staying. This is a new chain of restaurants from ITC Hotels and is positioned as " an expression of culinary art featuring re-imagined flavours from the Southern Indian Peninsula crafted with global culinary techniques." 

Believe me, this is not just marketing speak to push a new product range. It is a realistic description of the way the ITC Hotel Chefs have used South Indian ingredients and food forms in innovative and imaginative ways. 

I am not surprised at all to hear that Avartana at ITC Grand Chola at Chennai has made its debut at #30 in Asia's Top #50 Restaurants! Apparently, this chain will over time be found in more and more of ITC's luxury hotels.

We were greeted with a welcome drink of -what else but Rasam. This flavourful rasam was made without  the use of lentils of any kind.

While there are 4 different dining options ranging from 7 to 13 courses of fine dining, we opted for "Maya" the 7 course one- which was a smart decision as it more than met our needs.

My aim here is not to describe each and every dish as that would spoil the culinary experience for you. I would rather you enjoy it for yourself and draw your own conclusions. I am instead sharing a few dishes that really stayed in my mind.

The picture above is of  Coriander Chicken served with mini-appams. The mini appams really looked so cute and were delicious. The chicken coriander was outstanding- a dish we will remember for very long! 

Another dish that took us totally by surprise for its innovative presentation and taste was the Fermented Chilli Prawn served with a base of idli! 

One would expect a gourmet meal such as this to end with a bang! And it surely did! The dessert - Pumpkin and Candied Ginger, made with Jaggery and Sesame Ice Cream  - was excellent too.

Since it was out wedding anniversary, we were treated to a special extra dessert of pedas and chocolate - in which the principal ingredient was South India's famous Pal Khova! 

Behind every successful restaurant is a team of people who work hard to give us a perfect dining experience. I had the pleasure of meeting Chef Aditya of Avartana in ITC Royal Bengal. He is one of the modern day young chefs who dare to think big . After our dining experience, I am convinced that very soon ITC Hotels'  fledgling Avartana chain of fine dining restaurants will go to great places. 

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