French food finds many takers in Kolkata

La France in Kolkata


News - India & You

March 15, 2017

/ By / Kolkata

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Kolkata food lovers find French delicacies across the city, particularly desserts

Kolkata food lovers find French delicacies across the city, particularly desserts

With upcoming festivals and numerous cafés, Kolkata is catering to the growing number of French food lovers in the city.

In the charming Park Mansions centre of Alliance Française du Bengale, French gastronomy found many takers in the city last week, where a teaser of the upcoming Le Café was showcased. This is among the numerous cafés in the eastern Indian city of Kolkata devoted to serving French patisserie delicacies like crépes and macaroons, where gourmands find themselves delighted. Even cafés that aren’t exclusively ‘French’ have incorporated desserts and dishes from the cuisine, ensuring that the taste buds of inhabitants and visitors to the City of Joy travel the distance to the European country known for its food worldwide.

A foretaste of the dishes for Alliance Française Café ‘Le Café’, with special offers on the March 10-11 and March 17-18 has been organised in the city. The event has been planned in collaboration with TOTO Café, which was created in 2015. A project undertaken by the NGO, ‘Life Project 4 Youth’ (LP4Y), NGO Tomorrow’s Foundation and the French Consulate in Kolkata, TOTO assists in development of professional and social skills of young adults from marginalised sections of the society. TOTO is situated in Kolkata’s Chetla area in New Alipore, where disabled, domestically abused and abandoned children from street communities of the city have found a place to serve delicious European food and undergo skills training.

For the lovers of French food in the city, crépes, madeleines, crème brulées, souflées, apple tarts and eclairs remain favourites. Paris Café, perhaps the most popular establishment for sampling patisserie and savoury items, has expanded from it original outlet to three in the city, all of which are marked for their art deco interiors, delicious macaroons and coffee that is accompanied with sweet madeleines. Rouge is another bakery in the city offers delectable macaroons, a classic French delight, although it is widely known for its Red Velvet Cake. MD Mahasweta, a foodie and MA student of English literature at Jadavpur University states, “With the advent of shows like Masterchef Australia and US, people are getting more and more exposed to global cuisine and especially, western cuisine within which French cuisine occupies an authoritative position.”

With chefs studying from Le Cordon Bleu, France and returning to the City of Joy to share their cultural exchanges, Kolkata finds flavours from France all over. Mahasweta agrees, “There are entrepreneurs all over the city coming up with restaurants which experiment with food.” Naming some of her personal favourites, Mahasweta names La maison des délices, a patisserie and bistro as a popular choice in the city, with dishes such Ratatouille Primavera with Cheese Fondue on offer. Stating other continental restaurants such as SpiceKraft and One Step Up, which offer French dishes, she explains, “The chicken cocq au vin in SpiceKraft is amazing as well as the devilled crabs. As for One Step Up, I would name the poulet à la façon du chef as a personal favourite.”

Gout de France awaited

Goût de France or Good France, the event set to take place on March 21, will see over 2,000 restaurants in 150 countries participate in the event to celebrate French gastronomy. With themes such modern cuisine, fine dining and bistro to be presented in Kolkata, Café Swiss, La Cucina and others are set to participate. Atout France, which oversees the development of tourism for France, is among the major organisers of this upcoming celebration of food.

“People in Kolkata are no longer restricted to Indo-chinese and Mughal cuisine. They are more adventurous now,” states Mahasweta. The opening up of new cafés and establishments, along with festivals such as the Goût de France only aids this sense of adventure, which helps foodies transport themselves to France.

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