Gaggan is not your average Indian restaurant situated in a white colonial house in Langsuan, and is the brainchild of the Calcutta-born chef Gaggan Anand, who also had impressive training under famed chef Ferran Adria at the prestigious El Bulli academy in Spain.
I went on a delicious journey, a culinary adventure and there was so much excitement to my palate – I couldn’t wait to get home and write about it. I had heard many terms used to describe the food at Gaggan – scientific, molecular, fusion and progressive Indian cuisine. I understood all of these much more when I experienced the surprising tastes, uniqueness of the flavors and the exciting textures of the food by myself. It was one of those meals that inspire you, challenge what you think you know about food, and that you remember for a long time.
Once we were seated, adorable welcome drinks (a passion fruit based mocktail) were brought to us. Before we started the 8-course tasting menu, we were presented with Amuse Bouche – pleasant surprises they were! The jelly-like Raita (Indian-style yogurt with spices) just erupted with flavors. We were also told to eat the mixed nuts along with the small plastic bag, and we obediently complied because we were starving. Okay, don’t worry, it was rice paper! Pani Puri in a white chocolate case and Papri with potato puree next – We just started our meal and it was already turning out to be like a beautiful orchestra.
Soon the first dish arrived in a treasure chest, interestingly named Viagra, it was supposed to be French Oysters with mustard ice-cream but since the Oysters were still stuck somewhere in transit, they were replaced with Uni (sea urchins). Honestly, this combination tasted a bit strange to me – perhaps it’s an acquired taste.
Moving on, the French-Indian fusion of Foie gras with red onion chutney and raspberry powder worked quite well. A light and peppery truffle soup, and spicy lamb shank with curry leaves followed.
Then, it was Game On! The names of the dishes are really cooperating with my post here – Tandoor roasted wild quail with pineapple chutney. I think this was visually my favorite looking dish; tasted great too. After that, Something Fishy happened! No really, that was the name of the South Indian inspired dish, fried Iddiyapam with wild Sea bass in a delicious coconut-based Molee curry.
Next, we enjoyed the Naan breads with Chicken Tikka Masala, AKA the British national dish.
The end of our tasty sojourn was approaching and what better way to end it than with a classic Indian dessert, Gulab Jamun, but a lighter ice-cream based version. Also, I like the name G and J! It sounds so hip, right?
Although we did not get a chance to meet Chef Gaggan in person, it was still an enjoyable dinner and the staff was attentive and professional.
The talented mixologist from Spain also concocted a special drink for us consisting of Johnnie Walker Gold Label Whiskey, Beer, Apple juice and Orange bitters. It was creative, refreshing, delicious, and much appreciated. Plus, anything that has beer in it is just destined for greatness!
All of the dishes were like edible art and I would love to return again for more electrifying food.
More on the scene:
What do you think of this style of food? Have you ever tried scientific or molecular cuisine?