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Festival Of Lights at Benjarong




So I learnt that it is not only in India do we celebrate the Festival of Lights. Actually in India what is the festival of lights? Some say it is Diwali (or Deepavali), but last week I heard that Karthigai Deepam is the actual festival of lights! I am not sure if there is a similar confusion in Thailand, but apparently there is a festival of lights which like Diwali has its own set of foods and Benjarong is giving us a glimpse of it!

So for starters we had the fish cooked in a pandanus leaf! I love the chicken version here (though, obviously, I thought it was way better in Thailand), the fish was excellent. It is called Pla Hor Baitaey, but that is the last of Thai names you will read, I will stick to English!!!! And then there was the spicy grilled chicken balls in skewers! Loved it and this is the first time I am eating balls (er, yeah) on skewers! The prawn salad, another simple and well thought out dish turned out super nice!!! Though the vegetarians were polite enough to not touch the non veg offerings, I was not so polite and dug into the crispy fried mushroom salad and I did not regret it. I apologised though!

Though you see a lobster on the photo, we did not actually get to eat it, so I can't comment on it, but there was the Thai Yellow curry, a very different form of Thai yellow curry which we all liked! It was not like Thai Yellow curry at all, and Chef Ram explained that this curry has its influence from Burma and surrounding parts of Thailand where they also celebrate the festival of lights and young couples light candles on float (called krathong) and float it on the lakes and ponds (Bollywood/Kollywood influence?) and they make this curry and eat with rice!!! Nice story and nice food!

The desserts were outstanding! They had a lemon grass ice cream! Whoa, their group restaurant, Teppan, made ice cream out of Wasabi and now these guys have made one out of lemon grass! Tasted great, while the second dessert we had, the sticky rice with pudding was equally nice!

Overall we had a great time at lunch and you will even be given your own krathong to set free with a wish (here they don't differentiate between young and young at heart, all tables get one), so if you have some unfulfilled wishes and want to eat while wishing away, you know where to go! Prices are typically Benjarong, so you will know what to expect, for those who don't a meal for two will cost about Rs 2000! The festival is on till Dec 10th I think!

Almost always my experience at Benjarong is a 4/5 and this time is no different!

And hey, if you enjoyed reading this, please share!

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