Posted on: Monday November 10, 2014
CHANDELIERS, GILDED TRIMMINGS, kundan embellishments, silver crockery – some elements are indispensable to the idea of dining in state. Imagine it coming together in the highest Indian traditions just for you. Royal Vega draws on the philosophy of taste, the use of seasonal produce, and the legacies of India's princely states and aristocratic homes.
These traditional recipes have been passed down through generations from a time when meals were composed with a careful regard for local produce, and the requirements of the body for the time of year. Traditional wisdom identifies six distinct seasons (ritus) and food was modified for each. It has long been held that the flavours of our food change with every season. According to Ayurveda, the constitution or dosha of the body are intimately related to the seasons.
Based on the Vedic understanding of the medicinal properties of plants, herbs, fruits, vegetables and grains, the cuisine at Royal Vega is designed to rejuvenate one’s mind and body. Every dish is made fresh, wholly vegetarian ingredients that have been carefully sourced from the length and breadth of India. The cuisine draws inspiration from India’s rich and colourful repast and forgotten recipes garnered from ancient manuscripts. Traditions have been researched and sought out with great attention and regard: ITC’s Chefs have permeated kitchens and homes, sought out traditional dishes, and taken them out of the confines of homes, to the public domain. Each dish is cooked organically and takes on a character of its own. All these dishes are based on the Ayurvedic principles of striking a balance between taste and health.
Through the menu, Royal Vega offers diners three journeys. The Ranjit Khasa -available throughout the year - takes inspiration from the grand banquet hosted by Maharaja Ranjit Singh to mark the festival of Baisakhi. Aarzoo jo Mehman is the a la carte selection served in a choice of china or silverware. The six Indian seasons – Shishir Ritu (cold and dewy season between winter and spring), Vasant Ritu (spring), Grishma Ritu (summer), Varsha Ritu (monsoon), Sharat Ritu (autumn) and Hemant Ritu (winter) – are the basis for Ritu Khasa.
Guests may be seated at the Niwas which invokes the style of the court with places for state courtiers, ambassadors, wazirs and dewans. Rajadhiraj invokes the regent’s banquets, with places for visiting dignitaries. Rajvansh Chowki recalls the intimacy of family dining among royalty. Rajmata Chowki re-establishes the imperial table of the Queen Mother. The Raj-Rani Room recalls the set-up of the royal retreat.
In this setting, the evening unfolds with 'a feast of six tastes' Arusuvai Vrindhu. An array of 18 outstanding vegetarian dishes showcases the harmony achieved with six tastes, through a masterful orchestration of carefully sourced ingredients presented on one plate. The emphasis is on retaining natural flavours through an informed use of local spices and techniques.
The aroma that pervades the air, a sight which adds to its flavour and prepared to please the diner is what defines a meal served at the Royal Vega. Allow yourself to be enticed by a vegetarian luxury cuisine that is at once local, Indian and personal, at Royal Vega.