Review: DIVA Spiced, New Delhi

DIVA is a chain of fine dining restaurants in India. A brainchild of Chef Ritu Dalmia, each restaurant is famous for its own unique style and menu. A new offing from the same team is Diva Spiced. Situated at Meherchand market, it has taken the space of the old Chez Nini, ‘DIVA Spiced’ is an all-day dinning café offering Modern Asian Cuisine. Reflecting Ritu’s signature style of fresh and wholesome ingredients, the café introduces a menu which is a culmination of flavours, spices and innovations from the South East Asian belt. As Staying true to her classic style, a definite splash of European technique and presentation is evident in the cuisine.

DIVA Spiced_Ground_floor

DIVA Spiced is a 70 cover café spread with a ground and first floor seating. Keeping up with the DIVA legacy, Spiced has a warm and a cozy ambiance, but unlike other Asian cuisine venues it has its own take on decor.The interiors of the cafe have been designed by Anita Dalmia with a combination of vintage and contemporary style. The wallpaper is quite quirky with images of Asian women, Asian motifs and sightings while the chairs and furniture have an industrial appeal. Keeping Asian minimalism in mind the look is overall quite subtle with a play of bright colours. The style is very cafe like while the food is Ritu Dalmia’s take on Asian cuisine.

DIVA Spiced_1stFloor

Not for the weak-hearted or for people who do not like experimenting, the menu is a culmination of a lot of innovations, ranging from steamed crystal dumplings to grilled, fried and baked dishes. Some of signature dishes include tapas dishes like Panko Crusted Arancine filled with corn & chili jam, fried Zucchini flower stuffed with Tofu and Feta, Pork belly skewers with spicy yuzu Lemon dressing. For the mains there is a large variety like Goan Prawn Curry simmered in kokum and coconut served with ginger rice, stuffed baby eggplant in a whipped fennel sauce, Miso Marinade Salmon with soba noodles etc. For a sweet ending there are the regular DIVA desserts and a few special ones for Spiced such as a Spiced Mess- Lemon Grass Meringue with mascarpone cream and berry compote and the special black pepper infused chocolate fondant served with basil ice cream!

Address: 79-80, Meharchand Market (Ground & First Floor)
Contact no: 011 49051837
Meal for 2: Rs. 2200/- (without Alcohol)

New Launch: Shingora

Established three decades ago, Shingora has been offering the most spectacular products in the fashion and lifestyle spaces globally. Shingora products embrace a delicate balance between the traditional Indian designs that are lifted to suit contemporary tastes, and colors that lend it an international touch. This luxurious label offers an array of beautiful throws and cushions to match and fit every setting seamlessly. Each piece curated in this label is one of its kind, the product is developed in-house, thus not compromising on the quality of material used. This tastefully curated collection is broadly divided into three categories, each with a different look and feel to add a perfect finishing touch to your home decor.

Shingora home, www.stylecity.in Shingora home, www.stylecity.in

For the first style the design team has made an effort to revive the golden age of William Morris. A lot of medieval style tapestry motifs like wreaths, parrots, pomegranate etc are tessellated to create overall patterns in interesting 3D surfaces.Second set of the collection is inspired from the classic, traditional Paisleys. They never go out of style and complement any contemporary as well a traditional set up impeccably. The third category in this collection is inspired from modern floral edgy prints. Each piece is a conversation starter that brings quirkiness and fun to a conventional seating area.The fabrics used in making this collection vary from cotton, wool and chenille that are 100% pure. The products range is retailed at an MRP of Rs. Rs 2995 to Rs 6995.After making a mark with their home décor line in the international market, Shingora, the retailer synonymous to style and elegance launches their Home label in India via their e-commerce portal shop.shingora.net this season.

Review: Tamra, Shangri-La, New Delhi

Tamra, the new all-day dining at the Shangri-la, takes its inspiration from the early ages of culinary evolution when copper (tamra) vessels were key components. I think the concept and the visual appeal of Tamra is fabulous. Tamra brings a high level of creativity to the casual dining scenario with a large variety of food offerings from around the world. It successfully brings old world charm and presents it in a new avatar,as it borrows its decor inspiration from the early trading markets when Indian spices, jute, copper, silk, leather and other items were appreciated at shores all over the world. Even the interactive kitchens are a tribute to the early market place, where Chefs showed off their skills and produced culinary delights to sell to traders and visitors.

Tamra, Shangri-la, www.stylecity.in

Walking into Tamra was quite a pleasant surprise for me as I am not used to seeing Hotel coffee shops go through such creative ideas and style the space. Tamra has a unique five, live kitchen concept, along with an elegant wooden bar next to the entrance. Conceptualized by the renowned Dubai based Stickman Design, the restaurant is a visual depiction of culinary delights from around the world. From the wheat grass lined planter boxes that form the backdrop to the continental station to Copper hanging pots that are displayed over the two infinity tables where mirrored walls provide an exaggerated view,the space gets an overall warm and convivial character

Tamra, Shangri-la, www.stylecity.in

Led by the hotels Executive Chef Martin Bracker, Tamra’s open theatre stations are Asian, Indian and regional, Japanese and Teppanyaki, homemade gelatos and a Dessert Bar, Cold Cuts, Cheeses, Breads and a Salad Bar. However despite the large Designed with intimacy in mind, Tamra has pockets of privacy screened off by decorative floor to ceiling jute rope partitions. Hanging shelves at the back of the show kitchens display decorative culinary installations and provide a quirky backdrop for the interactive kitchens while the counter tops are lined with signature dishes to showcase the food. The food itself is amazing! The variety and amount of food offered here possibly surpasses that of any other Hotel coffee shop buffet. They also have a ‘ghar ka khana’ counter which is perfect for the traveler who is missing home cooked food. Finally at Rs.2100++ (w/o alcohol) the buffet is also extremely well-priced. Piece of advice, go starving if you really want to enjoy the vast selection!

Sparkling Swarovski

Swarovski is the premium brand for the finest crystal embellishments since 1895. It is recognized for its innovative excellence, flair for trends, and its collaborations with top class designers and brands across the globe. Swarovski crystals have become a glamorous ingredient in chandeliers, floor panels, wall panels, building elements like door handles, soft furnishings, furniture and lifestyle décor accessories.

Swarovski Studded Mirror Frame
Swarovski Studded Mirror Frame
Swarovski Studded Door Handle
Swarovski Studded Door Handle

Today Swarovski leads the way forward working closely with industry experts including Anvi, Bharat Potteries, Carpet Couture, Dorset, GM Modular, Golden Lights, JJ Valaya,Luxaddi, Shimera, Stanley, Studio Plus, Tattva (Mukul Goel), Tilt (Mike Foley). These partners showcased innovative designer interior solutions like crystal inlays in marble and wood, decorative electric switches, crystal studded couture carpets and shimmering chandeliers.The precious ingredients used in the fashion, jewelry, accessories, interior and lighting industries can be recognized by the Swarovski seal.With its sophisticated design features, such as the hologram effect and tracking number, the seal serves as a certificate of authenticity that identifies products embellished with genuine Swarovski crystals.

As noted at the India Design 2015 from February 13-15, 2015 at NSIC grounds Okhla, New Delhi.

Review: Chew Pan Asian cafe, New Delhi

It is a pleasant surprise and joy to see bright and quirky interiors in an Asian restaurant, namely Chew Pan Asian cafe,  which is such a contrast from the usual sombre and zen interiors usually associated with Asian restaurants. But the decor is just the start as the food is equally delightful and unique. Launched in January 2014, Chew Pan Asian is all about experimentation with Pan Asian cuisine. The menu boasts of Chinese , Japanese , Thai and the Indonesian Cuisine and also boasts of an open kitchen as well as a live Teppanyaki grill.

Chew Pan Asian Cafe, www.stylecity.in

Spread over 2500 sq.ft. area the interiors of the restaurant are vibrant yet comforting. Walls adorned with the eye-catching black and white Aztec-patterned tiles have been carefully contrasted with Dholpur stone. Chew is a quirky, hip and vibrant restaurant. The furniture is a mix blend of booth sofa sitting, swing seats and turquoise blue chairs that make the dining experience at Chew super comfortable and fun! Asian inspirations within the space come in the form of carefully hand-picked ceramic plates and posters that adorn the walls and the elongated spice rack that features spices from Asia! My style pick was definitely the swing chairs which had been anchored to the floor, but as cool as they looked they also looked a bit uncomfortable, but then style before comfort I say!I also loved the wall with one liners, that included lines like “All you need is love, but also a little chocolate”, those pretty much made my day.

Chew Pan Asian Cafe, www.stylecity.in

Chew Pan Asian cafe, www.stylecity.in

The menu much like the decor of the place is quirky and fun. It is appealing and makes one want to actually read the menu without it seeming like an ordeal. For food, we asked the chef to get us small portions so we could try the various dishes on the menu. We started with the chew special house salad, which unlike what is expect from Asian dishes was actually not very sweet but quite fresh and light. We wanted to avoid Japanese dishes as it seems recently all we have eaten is Japanese food, so we stuck to other asian dishes. Of course the highlight was the various dumplings where they have something called crystal dumplings which i have never eaten before, but am glad I did as they were lighter than regular dumplings and we tried almost all on the menu. For mains we had Stir friend prawns and Chicken meat teriyaki with some steamed rice and some braised vegetables. We were very happy with both the service as well as the quality of our food. We ended with some Tiramisu and finger-licking chocolate molten cake. I would absolutely go back and have already recommended the venue to various people. Do try it for yourself!

Address: First Floor, M16, Outer Circle, Connaught Place, New Delhi
Phone: 011 41516164
Price: Rs.2,000 for two

Luxe and Stylish: Rohit Gandhi+ Rahul Khanna

Industry stalwarts, Rohit Gandhi and Rahul Khanna best known for their contemporary aesthetic in fashion, recently launched their new flagship store on the main strip in Defence Colony, a prime hub of luxury lifestyle in New Delhi. At the launch of their new flagship store; the duo showed their support to the freedom of expression and love over an evening of style and panache. The theme could be seen splashed across their visual merchandize, through installations of mannequins in position depicting affection, while the branding clearly spelled out ‘ Freedom of Love’.

Rohit Gandhi +Rahul Khanna store, www.stylecity.in

Rohit Gandhi +Rahul Khanna store, www.stylecity.in

The label has always had great emphasis on silhouettes and detailing wherein the core influence’s have been contemporary modern art, linear structures and geometric lines. This passion for minimalism has been translated in the look of the store.Two spectacular floors, a ground and a basement offer a selection of their menswear and women’s wear. The design reflects the signature sensibility of modern edge.Raw concrete merges with metallic elements. There are lacquered glass panels, walnut brown color tones and signature gunmetal finishes. Contemporary art bring visual impact to the space.At the very entrance of the store is a large metallic and blown glass chandelier. Klove especially conceptualized this statement piece for the store.  The piece in a twist of design and innovation embodies the logo of the brand.

Rohit Gandhi +Rahul Khanna store, www.stylecity.in

Rohit Gandhi +Rahul Khanna store, www.stylecity.in

The store much like the duo’s collections is true to the brand’s core aesthetic wherein each element personifies what the label has stood for, for the past 16 years.

Store Address: D-15, Defence Colony, New Delhi
Phone: 011 40578474 & 011 46594447

Style Picks: Halloween Inspiration

So as much as it is supposed to be scary, there is something sexy about the creatures of the night. At least in current fan fiction. Here is our picks of the best Halloween products that have inspired designers..

By Isha Marwaha
By Isha Marwaha

1. Moi et la Rose Sofa, Sicis
2. Marie Antoinette chandelier, Bisazza
3. Magic Mo, Swarovski
4. Alexander Mcqueen Fall collection
5. Skeleton Watch, Corum
6. Spider Lantern, www.Spirithalloween.com
7
. Skull Candle Holder, http://www.spirithalloween.com
8. Halloween Goblet, Walmart
9. Black Pumps, Christian Louboutin
10. Mask by Diane von Furstenberg for Elephant family
11. Social Butterfly mask, Laila Singh
12. Maleficent Lipstick, MAC
13. Hypnotic Poison, Dior

Travel: Architectural Marvel

By Isha Marwaha

What If you see a building or a house which is upside down? Strange right? You’ll be amazed to know about some extraordinary and odd architectural buildings. And naturally the question pops up, how did they manage to do it?Crooked House, Poland, www.stylecity.inThe Crooked house, Sopot, PolandDancing House, Prague, www.stylecity.inDancing Building, prague, Czech Republichole house, Texas, USA, www.stylecity.inThe Hole House, Texas, USAUpside down house Poland, www.stylecity.inUpside down house, Szymbark, PolandNewark-ohio-longaberger-headquarters-frontThe Basket Building, Ohio, USA

Review: Hungry Monkey, New Delhi

The New York styled loft ambiance of Hungry Monkey; bare brick walls, concrete floors, the MS installations and the elegant wooden interiors come together in perfect synchrony to create an intriguing industrial feel. The creative typography of quotes on the walls, crafted using carefully chosen fonts are a perfect match to the stylish vibe of the restaurant. Already curious? Well, ‘curiosity is the beginning of adventure‘, is exactly what the walls of The Hungry Monkey tell you.With a faint old school meets new age magnetism, numerous little elements like encyclopaedias stacked on shelves, a vintage hour glass, Edison light bulbs and the rich brown of the wood everywhere bring to life these very stories.The Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.inThe Flying Brunch, Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.in

Inspired by sunny California, The Hungry Monkey introduces the city to ‘California cuisine’, which many may not be well-versed with, but worth a try. An out of the box offering, the restaurant brings you a rendition of varied dishes from the European culture with a unique twist of fusion. Even the “Flying Brunch” is a step away from the usual. After you pick your salad from the display, you get small quantity main dishes delivered to your table and you can pick and choose the ones you want to have or repeat. The Hungry Monkey offers an eclectic menu which focuses on a global palate, through a surprising fusion of flavours combined with fresh produce from organic farms like ‘Farmlove’, a pioneer in organic food in the capital. Dig into the Cold Spinach Gomae or relish the signature Bang-Bang Chicken Rolls. For the adventurous souls, the Expresso Pan Fried Chicken made with a light coffee sauce or the Asian Honey and Soy braised Pork Ribs served with Kimchi on the side are the perfect indulgent picks from the menu. While the Smoked Salmon Carpaccio is a succulent fusion of flavours, the White Chocolate Parfait with almond and vanilla filo pastry cigar along with Coconut French Toast leaves a lasting impression. The Flying Brunch, Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.in

The bar’s hexagonal chemical bond inspired display itself has been designed personally by the owners who have left no stone unturned to bring you an exciting array of drinks. Always innovative in its ways, The Hungry Monkey serves its signature cocktails, the Old-Fashioned and the Manhattan, classic as well as smoked. The bar here easily boasts of a selection of delightful and many a times ‘difficult to spot in this city’ liquor.  Apart from popular modern cocktails, be assured to also come across beautifully infused renditions of the classics.

Eat | Drink | Play
Address – B 6/6 DDA Market, opposite Deer Park, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi
Contact No. – 011 46049801, +91 9810788196
Meal for 2 – Rs. 2000 ++
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/hungrymonkeydelhi

New Launch: Royce’, New Delhi

After mesmerising customers in Mumbai and Bangalore, ROYCE’,the famed Japanese confectionary company launches in New Delhi at Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj.Founded in 1983 in Northern Japan, ROYCE’ prides itself on its wide and unique offering that follows one underlying theme- chocolate products that are rich in flavour, textures, complexity and creativity.  Royce, Ambience Mall, www.stylecity.inOne of the brand’s most hot selling products is the “Potatochip Chocolate” range of confectionary. The “Potatochip Chocolate” are salty potato chips coated with a layer of milk chocolate on one side. The company’s other signature product, the “Nama”, is a cocoa-dusted truffle-like chocolate so fine and delicate that it requires a specially designed spatula to lift and hold. Then my favourite,as I am not a cocoa person is the “Prafeuille Chocolat”. This three millimeter thin strawberry-scented chocolate is inspired by the delicate French desert “millefeuille” and is filled with a medley of sweet-tart raspberry and blueberry reduction. Also in-store will be the “Criollo Chocolate”, this complex and aromatic chocolate is made from Criollo beans, the world’s rarest and most expensive cacao beans, found only near Lake Maracaibo in Venezuela.ROYCE' Criollo Chocolate, www.stylecity.in

ROYCE' Chocolate 'Hazel Cream' Wafers, www.stylecity.inEven the ROYCE’ store at Ambience, Vasant Kunj has been designed to complement the brands intricate Japanese identity and culture. The front fascia of the store as well as the display counter, mimic the delicacy and geometry of contemporary Japanese architecture and interiors. Materials like hardwood maple are used to blend in with existing surroundings creating a warm and inviting retail as well as tasting experience. The space has been designed as a transformative Japanese chocolate bar, conducive to exploration and interaction.

ROYCE' Potatochip Chocolate, www.stylecity.in
Burgundy Hospitality, a first-of-its-kind fine foods and luxury gourmet curator is accredited for bringing this unique brand to India. ROYCE’ chocolates are priced at Rs. 1050/- for 125gms onwards.To celebrate the festive season, ROYCE’ introduces a very special “Limited Edition Assortment Gift Box”. The Limited Edition Gift Box for Diwali has five varieties of ROYCE’ chocolate and a total of 38 pieces, including Baton Cookies (6 pcs), Chocolate Wafers “Hazel Cream” (6 pcs), Criollo Chocolate (6 pcs) and Pure Chocolates (20 pcs).Priced at Rs. 2000, the luxurious “Limited Edition Diwali Box”  is available at ROYCE’ Delhi, Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj on a pre-order basis till the end of October.