Hot Air Chat with Chef Rahul Bisht, Svenska Design Hotel

Chef Interview EveningFlavors

Chef Interview – Miro

In her review of Miro, the signature specialty restaurant at luxury boutique Svenska Design Hotel, food critic Rashmi Uday Singh states, “Well-made complimentary dips on the table (Garlic Alio, Red Mojo Green Pea Hummus) set the tone for Chef Rahul Bisht’s meal to come. Flavoursome Turkish Lamanchun Lamb Pizza pleases.  Saucy Patata Bravas and mouth-watering Moussaka makes for a memorable meal.” That’s how Miro, designed with a handsome décor and with a fabulous gourmet offering wow you.

Located in the bustling commercial suburb of Andheri West, this Swedish lifestyle hotel is cleverly close to the airports yet able to service a large part of north Mumbai as its catchment. Minimalistic and clean in design, the hotel makes up for the frills of a larger hotel by providing highly personalized services, including private butler services and in-room spa treatments for its guests.

Svenska Mumbai has five restaurant and lounge options in spite of its small footprint. These include Times Food Guide award-winning Miro; Times Nightlife Guide award-winning Miro Lounge; the highly popular Global Buffet (with a scrumptious spread of 50+ items, including an amazing 16 starters and live counters apart from a delightful world-cuisine spread comprising soups, salads, mains and desserts); Mesa Bistro all-day-dining coffee shop; Mesa Deli cake shop; Miro Banquets for conferences, private parties, cocktail evenings and other social and corporate events; and the lovely Sky Lounge on the rooftop, with fabulous offers on drinks starting only Rs.99, along with beautiful ambiance with city views for that perfect drinking and dining experience under the stars!

Eveningflavors was given an opportunity to meet the Head Chef of Svenska Design Hotel, Rahul Bisht. Antony took this occasion to get to know the young and charismatic chef and about his life in and around Svenska Design Hotel.

1) How do you describe your style of cooking?

I prefer doing contemporary cooking with a base of classical cuisines.  I like to use seasonal ingredients with emphasis on the nutritional value of dishes.  Most of all, I concentrate on the highest quality of the products as this is an excellent kitchen and one cannot please customers by just cooking well.

2) How do you keep the restaurant running in chaotic situations? How do you keep everybody calm around you?

I try to keep a calm demeanor all the time. I don’t always command my team to do this or that, but rather I prefer helping them when I see that they are struggling.  That’s how I keep my nerves and also facilitate my team to deliver their best, even under pressure.

3) How long have you been cooking professionally?

I think I first entered this field about 8 years ago.

4) Which is the dish you call your Signature dish?

I always combine different tastes, often with a mix classical cuisine.  I have several “signature dishes” that I am very proud of, but my favorite would be “Chicken and Chorizo Paella”, a classical Spanish preparation, with beautiful flavors.

5) Is there one secret ingredient you love to cook with?

I absolutely love Pork fat.  If you’ve never had potatoes roasted or fried in pig, or duck fat, you haven’t had a real French fries. Pig fat is about 50% mono-saturated and a large part of that is oleic acid – the same ingredient we praise Olive Oil for.

6) What is the most interesting or fun experience from your time in restaurants?

I had conducted a Spanish food festival during which we had invited chefs from El Bulli, Spain. One of them was a recipient of two Michelin Stars. Both the chefs stayed at Svenska for two months and trained the staff. The visiting chefs worked closely with my team to devise something ideal for the Indian palate.

7) One cuisine you would love to experiment with?

Definitely Indian, because it is such a vast and detailed cuisine.

8) Name one chef who inspires you…

Chef Oscar Gonzalez, I had worked with him at Taj Residency, Bangalore. Currently he is the executive chef at Four Season’s Hotel at Mumbai.

9) Is there a secret for a successful restaurant?

Someone who is afraid of his guests should never open a restaurant. Everything starts with the hearty welcome of guests and ends with their goodbye. All the little things in-between make the difference between leading a food joint and a successful restaurant. If everything is in accordance, it can be an unforgettable visit for the guest and a resounding success for the restaurant.

Of course, it does not work without a strong and committed team. A team which not only works together perfectly, but also is passionate about serving the best possible dishes to their guests. The secret to our growth is constant work combined with even more passion and urge to overtake oneself every single day. And we love what we do.

10) What are your best cooking creations?

Stuffed Dum Ki Raan (stuffed lamb leg cooked in Dum and finished in the oven.)

11) Any advice you would give to someone wanting to become a chef?

The job of a chef is very interesting. At the same time it requires a lot of dedication and discipline. Have a lot of passion and work hard is what I’d say.

We enjoy the chat with this passionate young chef, looking to beautifully merge the Mediterranean and Indian cuisines, and now taking it to another level with the Global Buffet, a fusion of various cuisines from across the world, with daily Chef’s Specials, ranging from Lebanese to Mexican, Turkish to Thai, South to North Indian, and Continental to Mediterranean.

Then we go on to enjoying the drool-worthy delicacies prepared by the Chef.

Expert tip: After your main course at the Miro, wind up with Crema Catalan and Chocolate Tartuffo.  And don’t forget to request for the sommelier to take you through a wine journey, primarily of New World Wines.

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