Having once passed up a ripe opportunity to dine at Caperberry, there was not a chance in all of Foodieville that we’d err again. When we got an invite to savor a three course prix fixe meal there as a preview for Citibank Restaurant Week India which is kicking off on September 16*, we were thrilled to bite-sized pieces.
We had heard enough about Caperberry and its food to have retained the sparks of curiosity in us as we nudged our way through the brimming traffic last week to finally reach our destination. We were instantly taken by the warmth of our attendants, one of whom kindly offered to brew a warm ginger-lemon concoction on seeing how the sniffles and whoops had struck. The ambience was dim-lit, unabashedly toned down in terms of colour, and smacked of a melange of Yankee and Parisian styles in aesthetics. An all too perfect playground for a date night or even a girls’ night out, as ours turned out to be.
* September 16th for Citibank card members and September 18th for general public
Within minutes, our order was taken and warm breads made their appearance on the table, accompanied by a creamy pesto dip that was fresh and extremely scoop-smack-lick worthy. There were a bunch of breadsticks too to munch on and wash down with a crisp, frothy, beet-orange gazpacho that had just the right blend of tang and sweet. Although we were a trifle hesitant at first – being raised in a culture that appreciates warm soups as it were – it took just a sip to do us in.
The Golden Corn Velvet was true to its name – a light corn soup with a saffron infusion poured tenderly over the comely little mound of vegetable timbale that was an explosion of mellow flavours with just a hint of spice. While the soup was lovely, it was rather filling – not that we’re complaining in so many words!
The Paprika & Cumin Grilled Chicken was a meal unto itself. With a lovely spiced up flavour cutting right through the succulent chicken pieces, the pep of the olives and cherry tomatoes and the crispness of the lettuce – complemented it very well. Again, this was a biggie, portion-wise, but worth every pence and posture change!
The main course had us in awe right from the word go. First, the Filo Stack was a work of art. Tactfully paired flavours and textures made it not just a delight to the tastebuds, but to our aspiring gourmet chefs’ senses too. Asparagus, aubergine, raisins and olives, tomatoes..all sandwiched with layers of flaky, crunchy filo sheets, topped with a liberal amount of mozzarella and baked to bubbly and brisk perfection. The fresh basil pesto added a pop to this dish and our only niggle is that it was a messy affair, although to be sure, we did finish it down to the last crumb.
The Picada Grilled Chicken Supreme came with irresistibly juicy and tasty chargrilled vegetables, and a delicious tomato basil sauce that was bursting with freshness. The grilled chicken did need a wallop of flavour and these assortments played their role extremely well, to say the least. The sautéed baby potatoes were, well, as appealing as potatoes are wont to be.
We were bursting at the seams by the time we washed our hands off the main course, but dessert had to be had and the choices made us drool silly even before they manifested on the table. Crackling crisp churros – hot off the oil – kissed with cinnamon and a dusting of sparkly white sugar..and a rich, velvety chocolate sauce to dunk into – never mind that we later swigged it down to the last drop.
Not big fans of regular ice cream – which is on the menu for the RWI, as is a sugar-free Kiwi Panna Cotta – we were generously offered two house specials that are not in the lineup, for taste: pineapple and rosemary sorbet and poached-pear (in red wine) sorbet, both of which we did enjoy, except that the pineapple was a mere glint in the former and the cinnamony essence in the latter was rather overwhelming. The cutesy petit fours were duly taken home for our little girls and they vanished before we could blink. Verdict: they were toooooo good!
We were happy to meet Chef Abhijit Saha, who is also the founder/owner of Caperberry and extend our compliments to him. Needless to say, we went back home happy and content, with a vow to go back soon.
On an ending note, we’d highly recommend Caperberry as a choice for your Restaurant Week India trail, if you like to be treated to a special feast and have a penchant for food that looks, smells and tastes classy. The pre-set menu includes a choice of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes for the first and second courses and three options for the dessert course. Priced reasonably at Rs. 750 for lunch or dinner, it is definitely worth every penny.
Note: Reservations for all restaurants participating in the Citibank Restaurant Week India in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore can be made only at http://restaurantweekindia.com/. The event will run for 10 days from September 23 through October 2, 2013 with over 70 of India’s finest restaurants participating.