8 Feb 2014

Splurge on a V-Day Champagne Dinner at San-Qi, Four Seasons Mumbai

‘Tis that time of the year when shops and restaurants are awash with red (and a bit of pink) – hearts, balloons, flowers, cakes and everything that denotes love and romance. Deals and offers are rolling out all over Mumbai and every restaurant worth its salt is offering a Valentine’s Day menu of some sort. Last year I had a fabulous dinner at Indigo and this year, taking it several notches up, I was invited to the Dom Pérignon 2004 Vintage Dinner that San-Qi at the Four Seasons Mumbai is offering all this week. So give your Valentine a taste of luxury with a five-course meal, which is paired with a bottle of Dom Pérignon 2004 Champagne.
Image courtesy Four Seasons
The restaurant San-Qi has four different kitchens (and chefs) running the show and you can choose from Japanese, Chinese, Thai and Indian dishes. The master chefs manning each kitchen are natives of the respective countries and bring a touch of authenticity to the cuisine. For the Valentine’s dinner, San-Qi has put together a menu where each course features a dish from a separate kitchen, making it a beautiful medley of flavours. While we tried the non-vegetarian menu, there are vegetarian options for all the courses.

We started with the Japanese course, which was Duo of Southern Tuna – a spicy tuna sesame cone and a tuna maki roll. The crunchy, sweetish sesame cone had a spicy tuna filling inside. The sushi came with a blob of wasabi and a little bit of horseradish. The soya sauce was served in a dropper, so instead of dipping it in sauce you could just pipe some out on the sushi. Chef Toshiyuki Okabe actually flies to the Tsukiji market in Tokyo to select the seafood he works with! The ‘duo’ was accompanied by a small pile of salad leaves with tofu and pine nuts and topped with a citrus dressing. The course was a lovely combination of sweet and spicy, as well as various textures playing together. In the veg option, the tuna is replaced with tomato.

The second course was a Chinese one, overseen by Chef Jiang Xin – Steamed ‘mantou’ Bun & Garmic Prawns. Now this was quite a ‘twist of taste’ kind of a dish. You can’t really go wrong with wok-fried garlic prawns, which were perfectly done and accompanied by some asparagus. The steamed bun was the pièce de resistance – it was layered with a chocolate filling. The seemingly odd combination of prawns and chocolate came together beautifully, especially with the Dom Pérignon 2004 – incidentally, my flute kept getting refilled magically ;) For vegetarians, the prawns are placed by kai lan (Chinese kale).

The third course was Highway Murg Tikka, a moderately-spiced dish from the Indian kitchen of San-Qi run by Chef Vikram Arora. I was a bit under-whelmed by this dish, though the champagne did complement the spices quite nicely. Vegetarians can expect a paneer tikka for this course.

Next came the Sea bass Green Curry, from the Thai kitchen of Chef Seefah Ketchaiyo. This was my favourite dish – the fish was steamed to perfection and flaked easily, the green curry was well-balanced and delicious, with slices of white eggplant in it. I was happy to see Chef Seefah again – she is one of the nicest chefs I have come across, always smiling and very down-to-earth. And she’s a great teacher; I have had a fab Thai cooking class under her guidance. In the vegetarian option, the sea bass is replaced with tofu. 

The dessert arrived on a slate – two scoops of Paan Ice Cream, along with what seemed like a cross between sponge & mawa cake. The ice cream was handmade and combined all the flavours of a good masala paan very well.

By the end of dinner, we had finished off the bottle of the Dom Pérignon 2004 Vintage – an exceptional champagne, which has been a well-regarded and high selling champagne since its release last year.


This special dinner is available from 8-14 February 2014 and is priced at Rs. 20,000 per couple + taxes

Disclosure: I was invited by Four Seasons to experience this offering. 

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