Long back in early nineties Speciality Restaurants Ltd. started their journey in offering food lovers at Mumbai, (known as Bombay that time) with fine dining experience. Their first restaurant was named as Only Fish. In 1994, the first outlet of Mainland China, which is one of the most known and acclaimed fine dining restaurants serving Chinese in India went operational at Mumbai. Today, as they completes their wonderful 25 years of supreme consistency, Mainland China operates 24 outlets across 5 countries. Though this brand has been famous for their exclusive Chinese menu, in 2017 they have revised their menu and included some other Asian (Japanese, Malaysian, Thai etc.) delicacies as well. Undoubtedly a great news for any Asian food lover! It is always exciting to see how even an ordinary well known dish is cooked and served by Mainland China in an extra-ordinary way!
Yesterday I spent an evening at the oldest outlet of Mainland China in Kolkata, India. I visited with my family and at the same time, along with other dishes for our dinner, I wanted to have their best delicacy on fish in recent days (fish being my all-time favorite!). I asked for their best and as suggested by the Executive Chef Mr. Indraneel Bhattacharya, I ordered a portion of their newly launched delicacy Pan Fried Asian Chilli Fish. Hold on if this name sounds very known to you! Pan Fried Chilli Fish is a very common dish in Chinese right? How it can be a new delicacy? Of course it is a common dish! But look at the name – Pan Fried Asian Chilli Fish. Slight twist in the name and enough twist in the recipe to create a taste that made me close my eyes with an out-of-the-world pleasure in my taste buds! This dish cooked at the peak of the perfection of timing, texture, aroma, ingredients and their proportions presented me with moments that I can never forget.
Let’s take a closer look at the delicacy now. In Chinese cooking, Pan Frying is a style of frying involving minimal oil, not much stirring and comparatively larger sliced pieces of meat or fish. Pan frying typically needs a very measured and perfect breading (coating the meat or fish with the batter) followed by frying it both the sides by turning it twice or thrice unlike stirring it as we usually do in stir fry dishes. In the dish served by Mainland China yesterday, the fish slices were cut into perfect size and shape followed by perfect breading. The slices were uniformly and perfectly pan fried. There are several varieties of known recipes for cooking Pan Fried Chilli Fish but Mainland China has came up with their own style to make it different than everyone else! The fish was tossed with Korean chilli, sweet bean, thinly sliced bell peppers, thinly sliced onion and finished with rice wine. I always love the perfection that Mainland China shows in application of rice wine or Shaoxing wine in their dishes as I feel it is always a delicate part of such recipes. This dish was also not an exception of the same level of perfection as always. Overall experience? Heavenly!
Along with the other dishes served with same outstanding level of quality and perfection accompanied by the calm and peaceful ambiance, the entire service team led by the Senior Executive Manager Mr. Koustav Ghosh and Mr. Manas Kumar Das went their level best to make it the most memorable Mainland China experience for me till date. Mr. Koustav Ghosh definitely deserves a special thanks for introducing me with the Executive Chef Mr. Indraneel Bhattacharya. It was a wonderful and memorable experience to meet Mr. Bhattacharya and to have a short chat with him on food! A Big Thanks goes to the entire team for their utmost care and hospitality.
Mainland China means Happiness!