With Duck Do Pyaaza and Thukpa Ramen, Raahi offers a modern take on Indian fare
A neo kitchen and bar based on the concept of a caravan that will take you on an epicurean expedition — that’s how the restaurant Raahi was introduced to us. This abstract idea is backed up by experimental dishes on the menu that incorporate some distinctly Indian ingredients, but presented in a wholly global avatar. Think garnishings of dal moth salad, filter coffee mayo and khoya crumbs. We discovered more during our dinner at the restaurant.
Raahi’s cocktail menu is based on the concept of the panch tattvas or five elements — earth, air, water, fire and ether. The Pavitr cocktail from the air section, for example, comes with a peanut butter perfume spray for added flavour. They also have a contemporary cocktail section with drinks incorporating Indian elements such as kokum wine reduction and gunpowder cheddar dust.
Our first course was the ‘Smoking’ Salt Cured Snapper, served with saunth soy — one for the adventurous eater. The delicate snapper carpaccio is served “smoking” on a grill at the table and topped with boondi and microgreens. The first dish from the small plates section we dug into was the Topli Paneer. A traditional Gujurati preparation, it involves a ball of cottage cheese cooked in a small bamboo cane basket (topli), and served on a bed of dal moth salad and farsan. While the combination of soft paneer and crunchy moth works well, the paneer was a little lacklustre. Another dish we tried was the Sattu Kachori, one that was stuffed with smokey suran and eggplant chokha — another dish where the texture is the hero. Seafood lovers should try the Coffee Cured Shrimp with an XO relish. The spicy Asian sauce is offset by the slight bitter hint of coffee. But the star of the small plates section was the Textures of Mushrooms — morels, button and shiitake mushrooms, plated with mushroom dust and mousse — a must-try for mushroom lovers.
While the mains have South Indian and North Indian classics, the dishes from the North East really stood out, a cuisine not commonly found in fine dining restaurants in the city. Assamese Masor Tenga (fish curry) and Aloo Pitika (mashed potatoes), Chicken Thukpa Ramen (noodle soup) and Bhoot Jholakia Pork Belly (the infamous Naga chilli) and Green Galho (a type of khichdi) are some of the options. We recommend you try the Yak Cheese Datchi (a spicy stew) with Tingmo-gurung bread or the Chicken Mizo Rice.
With textural contrasts, regional ingredients and unique presentation, Raahi is pushing the envelope when it comes to modern Indian cuisine and warrants a visit for diners with an experimental palate.
Rs. 2,000 for two. At St Mark’s Road