Flavours from India’s coast at ‘Tinge’

Hotel Grand Delmon has now opened a new restaurant ‘Tinge’. This is the best bet for anyone who wants to try out regional cuisine that covers coastal India. It has curated dishes from Malwan and Goa down the southern coast to Mangalore and Kerala and up the Eastern coast of Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, along with a few Andhra specialties as well

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Today Goa has several options when it comes to trying out cuisines other than Goan, Chinese or Continental. However, there is also a dearth of restaurants that offer regional cuisines of India and if there are a few, you would probably have to travel to tourist frequented areas.

On a rather busy weekday I walked into Tinge by Alcon Group that’s been running for about two months now. Chef Amol Desai makes sure he’s there to attend to people as well as help them choose from the menu that’s quite extensive in terms of the regions they cover.

The Kerala style potato fry was a smacking starter. Very similar to our Goan batat bhaji, this dry starter had large pieces of potatoes that had a wonderful taste of mustard, tomato, onion, chilli along with curry leaves that took this dish to another level.

There’s a seafood section where one can choose the seafood one wishes to try out and then pick the preparation that ranges from Malwani style to a Kerala pepper fry or a Chettinad preparation. The kingfish Malabar pepper fry was fiery with a good amount of pepper in the dish. An absolute must in the rainy season, it is even better if one has a cold. Again this dish had the divine taste of the curry leave tadka. I now hold curry leaves in high respect for the amount of goodness and difference it adds to a preparation.

The famous Manglorean ghee roast was red and not that spicy despite being told that it had Kashmiri and Guntur chillies. It was probably the ghee in which it was fried for about half an hour that made the difference. I enjoyed this with appams that were modified to keep customers happy. I like the original appams – soft, thick and spongy in the centre.

The Bengali preparation of Machor Jhol using the five spices was pretty good especially with the Rohu fish being well fried before being dunked into the dark yellow gravy. It is the mustard flavour that stands out here. The Malwani prawns rassa went perfectly with the steamed rice, and had its own distinctiveness in terms of preparations.

There are several options to choose from when it comes to desserts but I chose a bebinca cheesecake which has cream cheese layers in between the bebinca layers. Very fattening and heavy indeed. The crème Catalana, Portuguese baked custard tarts were just perfect in terms of taste and preparation. And whether it is Ganesh Chaturthi or not you can order some hot steamed ukde modak that have coconut and jiggery filling inside the rice flour shells.

The restaurant offers a coastal thali priced at `300 plus taxes for lunch should you want to try a little of everything from India’s coast, and a regular thali on weekdays for `200 plus taxes. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and the menu features Indian, Chinese and Continental food.

This place is worth a try to understand the variance in food across India’s coast right in the heart of the city.

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