Food and Night Life magazine organised the first ‘The Great Taste War 2013’ at IHM, Pusa for Delhi restaurants inviting huge response from food aficionados in the city. This innovative event promised to give the audience a taste of the true mettle of the talent behind successful eateries – the chefs. There aren’t many opportunities for chefs to participate in a live competition. Most current awards recognise restaurants basis critics and public voting, and hence miss out on the soul of the operation.
Restaurants participated in four broad categories – Italian, Innovation, Indian and Chinese. Indian Food Freak was invited as an official blogger to the event. Anticipating some exciting moments, we reached there in time to see the camera crew from Food Food channel already in place. Participants from most restaurants had already reached and were shown the workstation in the huge kitchen managed by Institute of Hotel Management.
The eminent jury consisting of Chef Manish Mehrotra, Rocky Mohan, Sourish Bhattacharya, Rupali Dean, Chef Vivek Saggar, Chef Shaju Zacharia, Mrs Geeta Bector and Manu Mohindra sat through the two day event to declare the winners.
As the contest was about to begin, the noted foodie and the man behind ‘old monk’ rum, Rocky Mohan rued out the utter lack of any female participants. As the contest began, emotions seemed to be running high as Chef Bakshish Dean encouraged the teams to keep cool in the heat. Each round lasted for 2 hours and was followed by extensive food tasting. Saransh Goila (Host of Roti Rasta aur India at Food Food Channel) was the host for the event and kept the audience engaged.
The winners who were chosen in close competition are:
FIO – Country Kitchen and Bar: Cremica Italian Category
Lodhi Hotel (formerly known as Aman): Nestle Professional Innovation Category
Crowne Plaza New Delhi Rohini: Catch Salt & Spices Indian Category
AI-Olive: Pan Asian Category
The competition has just begun. I am sure the event will grow bigger and better and hopefully will soon go national too. Amen to that.