Event: Italian Food & Wine Tasting
Venue: Italian Consulate Kolkata
Date: 20 Nov 2017
“World Week of Italian Cuisine” is a week long international food event coordinated by Italy’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to promote Italian cuisine abroad and support the Italian agricultural industry.
Calendar marked from 20 to 26 Nov 2017, as of today, it’s Second Edition is almost half way through.
Seven prime city hotels who have participated in this prestigious event are – Swissôtel, Taj Bengal, ITC Sonar, Hyatt Regency, The Oberoi Grand, HHI and Novotel.
In association with the respectively assigned celebrated Italian Chef, each of these hotels will be serving specially curated Italian Cuisine in one of their restaurants, throughout the duration of the aforementioned event.
On 20 Nov 2017, The Consulate General of Italy in Kolkata organized a gala food evening to kickstart the “World Week of Italian Cuisine”. Therein, all the aforementioned city hotels, in association with their allocated Italian Chefs, put their best foot forward and showcased and served lip smacking Italian delicacies to the attending guests, many of whom were acclaimed personalities in their own right.
Though all the seven food counters doled out both veg and non veg wares, made of top class ingredients, recipes and cooking methods, being a Veg Food Blogger, I only opted for the vegetarian options.
My tastings from the seven food counters comprised of –
* Swisôtel Counter *
– Cheese wraps in Alfredo sauce: Small flour based wraps wrapped around cylindrical pieces of cheese were cooked live in Alfredo sauce and served, dipped in a generous portion of the same sauce.
They were uniformly cooked, the cheese was not gooey and the sauce had the right balance of cheese and seasonings. The dish was nice and filling.
– Focaccia bread with Truffle oil: I took a slice of this bread to neutralize the cheese taste of the preceeding dish in my mouth. The bread was expectantly fresh and nice. But the Truffle oil drizzle atop it took me by complete surprise. It had a nice and distinct flavour and it actually enhanced the taste of the Focaccia bread slice!
* Taj Bengal Counter *
– Risotto alla zucca rossa, mascarpone and funghi: Infused with a heady mixture of zucchini, mushroom, mascarpone cheess, the creamy semi dry yellow colored Risotto, looked appealing and tasted nice.
* ITC Sonar Counter *
– Potato & artichoke lasagne: Made of multiple square shaped thin lasagne sheets, stuffed with a homogenous concoction of potato, artichoke, cheese etc. and topped with some red sauce, the Lasagne looked straight out of a connoisseur edition of a culinary cookbook!
While eating, there was no dripping of either the stuffing or the sauce. Red sauce was just perfect sans any tinge of sourness. The dish tasted excellent.
– Penne Pasta: It was simple dish of Penne pasta cooked live in Marinara sauce. Ths pasta pieces were relatively longer and slender than the ones usually served in most of the eateries in the city.
– Egg shaped potatoes with chopped porcini mushrooms stuffed in between: I was little sceptical in opting to eat what looked like a boiled whole potato barely smeared in some white sauce. But curiosity got the better of me, perhaps for the better of my tasting experience, as this dish turned out to be an altogether new and surprising experience.
How the finely chopped Porcini mushroom mixture found it’s way into the centre of an enclosed potato, is something I still need to figure out!
* Hyatt Regency Counter *
– Giardino fiorito, Verdure croccanti, fonduta di pecorino: It was a relatively healthy dish that comprised of sautéed vegetables like – carrot, zucchini, beetroot and broccoli, served with Truffle edible soil and Pecorino fondue.
Truffle edible soil was grainy and kind of popped in the mouth leaving a nice truffle flavor.
The dish tasted nice.
* The Oberoi Grand Counter *
– Devoid of any savouries, the food counter here comprised of an array of sweet servings in the form of – pastries, cigar shaped wraps and desserts in small glasses.
By the time, I was done with the savouries, I was too filled to taste anything here.
* HHI Counter *
– Panzanella Toscana: Served in small oval shaped white bowls with angular dividers in the middle, it was a salad made of bread croutons, tomato and cucumber chunks and diced parts of onion ringlets, finally garnished with a solitary basil leaf at the centre.
The salad tasted nice and crunchy.
* Novotel *
– Insalata – Caponata Sisiliana agrodolce: It was a concoction of chopped zucchini, tomato, onion, olives and the likes, cooked in some tangy sauces.
It tasted nice.
– Arancini – pesto pecorino, parmesan and pepper truffle: They were small balls of rice stuffed with the filling of pecorino and parmesan cheese, coated in breadcrumbs and fried.
They were well fried, crunchy and apt for the ongoing season aka mild winters.
Alongside the aforementioned seven counters, there was a separate counter for liquors, but it was too crowded to venture through.
Needless to say, it was an extremely well managed and fantastically foodilicious evening.
#ItalianTaste #vfr185 #WorldWeekOfItalianCuisine