JW Mariott, Aerocity, New Delhi: A visit to Akira Back and others

Akira Back
Akira Back

The Aerocity area of Delhi is fast becoming a hub of good international hotels. With plans of a major shopping mall and office complex, it may soon become the next food hub as well. JW Mariott in the area has already won the initial race by introducing some amazing in house dining options.

I had a chance to stay in the hotel for two nights last week and though was not at all impressed by the rooms and the room service (with dripping ceilings in the bathroom and littered hallways), I was quite impressed by the food options available in the hotel.

Chef Jason at Akira Back
Chef Jason at Akira Back

The hotel boasts of 3 main restaurants, one of them a Michelin starred Japanese restaurant- Akira Back, a Bakery and patisserie Delhi Baking Company (which makes its own in-house ice creams and they are Awesome!), and the all-day dining – K3 (Which has three separate live kitchens covering Italian, Oriental and Indian cuisines.

Apart from these restaurants, the hotel boasts of a Lobby level bar and an exclusive premium bar called the Oval Bar. This bar has an amazing stock of some of the rarest single malts that I have seen in a single place ever. For aficionados it is a holy grail of single malts.

Mirin and Edamame
Mirin and Edamame

We did our tasting at Akira Back which is located near the beautiful open water garden. The restaurant spreads across two floors with private dining options available in the basement level. The ground floor has an open kitchen on one side and elegant seating space on the other. There is also a wine cellar that one can use as a private dining space which gives an added elegance to the place.

We started our tasting with a Mirin and Edamame amouse bouche coated with sesame seeds that had subtle creaminess and umami flavours which were quite pleasing to whet up our appetites. The next dish to be served was a mini Tuna pizza with thin translucent slices of tuna served on a crispy base served with a citrusy Ponzu aioli and truffle oil, the nutty flavours, blending well with citrusy flavours of Ponzu aioli.

Hot oil salmon
Hot oil salmon

Hot Oil salmon was served next. It had a base of mild spicy soya sauce; the salmon cured in the flavoursome hot oil infused with ginger was a very delicate dish retaining the sweet flavours of salmon and integrating it with prominent flavours of Yuzu orange, garnished peppers and salty soya. The platter of Rock Shrimp tempura coated with Yuzu based mayonnaise was the weakest dish in comparison to the other better dishes of the evening.

Continuing with our citrusy journey, we were served an amazing Brussel Sprout dish next. The Brussel sprouts were cooked with Shiso and chili citrus vinaigerette which despite its citrus content, was very delectable. The spiciness of the chillis, the crunchy nuttiness of the brussel sprouts combined with the shiso gave the dish an amazing depth of flavours which I would highly recommend for you to try next time you visit the restaurant.

Shimeji Mushrooms
Shimeji Mushrooms

Next up was a Wasabi Pepper Tenderloin where the tenderloin was cooked over 12 hours in sous-vide served on a bed of silky creamy mashed potatoes, asparagus and a wasabi sauce. The potato mash was extremely silky and smooth and the other elements fine, but I found the tenderloin to be a bit on the tougher side, perhaps we like our tenderloin cooked more in a traditional way.

A very interesting mushroom dish was served to us next which was made using 4 different kinds of mushroom where the mushroom in the centre resembled a scallop, cut through like a scallop and even tasted like one much to our delight! This mushroom called Shimeji is an absolute delight and I would insist on diners to try it if they are looking for decent vegetarian options.

Sushi rolls
Sushi rolls

Finally the grand daddy, the ubiquitous sushi roll made its entrance, giant rolls rolled in lovely sticky rice with fresh pieces of salmon, tuna, roe and tempura prawns were a meal in themselves and we were glad that they were served last allowing us to enjoy each of the dishes served earlier. The sushis are the pride and joy of any Japanese meal and here too they stood their ground amongst the other delicious dishes.

To round off the fantastic meal we were served Akira´s Chocolate Bar with a Coconut Sorbet and Tokyo Cheese Cake with a Blackbery crumble and Strawberry Ice Shiso Ice Cream. While the chocolate bar was decadent with a nice soft macaroon on top, the Cheese cake was creamy and smooth and not overly sweet. The sorbet and the ice cream, we were told were made in house and they had many more flavours to boast of, sowe headed to Delhi Baking Company where we tried some of their homemade ice creams; the stand outs amongst them were the gulkand and double chocolate ones, creamy and smooth.

With a standout Michelin starred restaurant, two bars, one spa, one bakery and one round the clock restaurant, JW Mariott has it all. The hotel has intentionally kept the prices at a reasonable range and can be a good option to consider.

Ratings out of 5

Food: 4 | Ambiance: 4 | Service: 4 |Overall: 4

Meal for two with alcohol: INR 5000 + taxes | Alcohol: Yes | Credit Card: Yes | Wheelchair Access: Yes

Hotel Ratings:

Comfort: 3.0 | Service: 4 | Amenities: 4 | Overall: 3.5

Timing: 7.30 pm till 12.00 pm

Address: Asset Area-4, Hospitality District, Near Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi Aerocity, New Delhi-110037 | Telephone: +91 11 45212121

 

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