Chocolate Irish Dinner, On The Rocks, Crowne Plaza Chennai Adyar Park
Lamb Rack with Chocolate Sauce?
Chilli Chocolate soup!
When anything and everything on the special menu has chocolate in it, the invite from Crowne Plaza was rather intriguing. One, chocolate is a very tricky ingredient to use in a savoury dish and it takes a huge effort (and confidence) from the chef to pull it off! Two, doing it in India, where there is a real chance that people will arrive at different times and you will have to do appetisers and mains simultaneously takes a certain level of mental preparation!
And that obviously heightens my intrigue.
Special menu or not, the Focaccia with Garlic drenched in oil with a Chutney side is a signature at OTR! And gladly that was served first!!! Being four of us, we could taste a variety of dishes as we all decided to order different options from the menu. Oh yes, the menu, despite being a chocolaty one had four options for appetisers and mains. This chef really has guts! The right word would have been balls, but.......
A yummy Roasted Pumpkin and Chilli Chocolate Soup set the tone for the evening. Our friends enjoyed some Whiskey as this was a Whiskey pairing event besides the chocolates. We had less liver damaging drinks, the one with a chocolate hint was a super hit!
Back to the soup. Served in tiny cup, this was the chocolate version of the Mushroom Cappuccino. Yum!
Appetisers were killer! The crab with chocolate was a real stunner, both visually and gastronomically! While sea salt and chocolates are known to be a match made in heaven, the sea freshness with the raw hand made chocolates seems not too far behind. Chocolates can complement everything, I guess. The Grilled Asparagus with White Chocolate and the Polenta with Creamy Chocolate sauce was also great. Each of us got one which we shared!
And then things went slightly wrong. I don't know if it was because the chef had to keep sending appetisers to other tables while mains were coming to us, the mains simply did not live up to the standards set by the appetisers. The lamb and chicken weren't exciting enough. However there was one dish that stung all of us hard! The Single Origin Dark Chocolate Ravioli! Whoa my God! It was simply fantabulous. The ravioli was just perfect, slightly large in a good way and had flavours that were contrasting in a great way! That was the only main course that lived up to the hype and we requested an extra portion of it!
Dessert was pretty good. The Chocolate with Raspberry was a great end to a mediocre main course!
The evening itself was exciting. The founder of Earth Loaf chocolate is there to share his passion and details about chocolate making and you can learn a thing or two about using palm sugar for chocolates!!! The menu is available till the end of the week ending Jun 25th and is priced at Rs. 2999 plus taxes.