Last weekend, artisanal cocktails, mouthwatering food and an elegant ambience awaited us at Hyatt Regency, Delhi. As part of United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Taste of America campaign, we got to experience soulful renditions of classic dishes, highlighting American ingredients such as pistachios, cherries, walnuts, blueberries, turkey, cranberries and apples. Scroll down as we take you through our experience. Text and photographs by Anushka Goel
As I walk into Hyatt Regency, Delhi on a balmy Friday evening, my pandemic-induced anxiety is immediately put to rest. From frequent installation of hand sanitisers to minimal touch-points–the hotel ensures utmost safety to its guests. A quick walk later, I reach my dining destination for tonight–The Living Rooms. The freindly staff welcome me with a warm smile and then I’m greeted with a full roast turkey sitting on a bench–an indication that the rest of the evening, true to its name, will give me a taste of America, indeed.
While we wait for dinner to begin, we help ourselves to some beverages; a Lynchburg Old Fashioned cocktail for me, and a Mint Julep for my mom–my companion for the evening (which they make sans alcohol for her). A few minutes later, we’re invited into the dining area, where socially distanced tables are draped in hues of the American flag–red, blue and white. We settle down, all ready to indulge in an exclusive four-course tasting menu, curated by Chef Ivan Chieregatti and his team.
A round of introductions later, we’re greeted with the first course–a Cranberry and Pistachio Turkey Roulade for me, and a Cranberry and Pistachio Feta Strudel for my mum–both served with Memphis barbecue and coleslaw. The turkey is cooked to perfection, and the distinct textures of the pistachios shine through beautifully. Dried cranberries on top are a delicious addition to both, vegetarian and non-vegetarian versions of the first course.
The second course in the tasting menu, a Light Cauliflower and Apple Soup follows soon. Served with Blueberry air, the dish is accompanied by crisp Walnut bread. The flavour of cauliflower is unmissable in the thick soup, and tiny apple pieces add texture to the otherwise humble concoction.
Our next course consists of a Blueberry Murgh Malai Tikka for me, and a Blueberry Kasundi Paneer Tikka for mum, served with sweet potato mash, salted cranberry meringue and some coriander chutney. The chicken is tender, and the blueberry dust on the plate adds a beautiful visual contrast. I expect the sweet potato mash to be dense, but on contrary it’s light and fluffy–what a delight to my palate. The meringue has dried cranberries that add a flavourful fruity addition to the tikkas.
Right before desserts, we’re asked to head outside, where the roasted turkey sits. It’s going to be carved, something I’ve been waiting for since the beginning of the evening. The chef runs his knife through the turkey and serves us a piece slathered with sauces and vegetables. Every bite unleashes soulful, full-bodied flavours!
Dessert is a scrumptious affair. We’re served a Warm Apple Pie and Cherry Tart, with Pistachio ice cream on the side and a dollop of vanilla sauce. The crumbly base houses a gamut of delicate flavours; I can sense nutty aromas nuanced artistically with the essence of cinnamon sticks. Over all, the desserts are a winner for me.
The dessert plate is polished off clean within seconds. Satiated, we bid goodbye to Hyatt Regency, Delhi. The drive to home was a short one but the flavours continue to linger… I can’t wait to experience what else the Taste of America campaign has to offer.
Where: Hyatt Regency Delhi, Bhikaji Cama Place, Ring Road, New Delhi – 110066