Pan-Asian cuisines have caught the fancy of connoisseurs and food critics alike. Fine-dines offering interestingly curated menus rich with yuzu, kaffir lime, shiitake mushrooms, daikon radish, galangal and other intriguing ingredients from the Far East and South East Asia are today found across the streets of cities that stretch from Boston to Bangalore. There is a surge in demand for Pan-Asian food, considered healthier and tastier to conventional Western diets. And world-class hotel brands and their veteran chefs are leaving no stone unturned to entice guests who are on the lookout for gourmet indulgences concocted with flavours of the Orient. And one such place happens to be the newly-opened Far & East at the upscale Four Seasons Hotel Bengaluru at Embassy ONE.
The Four Seasons brand carries a decades-old legacy rich in luxury and world-class hospitality, with its opulent properties that dot every major city captivating guests with their mesmerizing interiors and impressive offerings. In Bangalore, the brand evokes all of this and more as guest experiences are elevated with best-in-class service and amenities. To take the fine-dine experience to a whole new level, the brand has just introduced an innovative restaurant focused around cuisines from Japan, China and Thailand; countries quite popular with Indians and the expat diaspora in Bangalore, both for travel and food. Far & East strives to retain the authenticity of Japanese, Chinese and Thai cuisines with fresh ingredients and handcrafted courses, while ensuring that both the evolved and evolving palates go back satisfied and come back again for more.
Perched high on the 21st floor of Four Seasons, providing a panoramic view of the city and its green lungs, the restaurant has been designed as a place with a quirky touch, while being bold and stylish. At a closer glance, you are sure to notice the quirks present in the brass snakes, bright green leaf-patterned upholstery, black monkeys, as well as the tangerine-hued sofas and the titillating romance between colours such as black and gold which enhance the exotic appeal. Also boasting of three private dining rooms and enchanting sit-outs, Far & East, designed by LW Design, which has offices in London, Dubai and Sao Paulo, is the perfect venue to host a sundowner, celebrate an intimate anniversary dinner, or create memories with friends over a multi-course spread.
The tastefully designed walls at the restaurant are plastered with the Fat Lady artwork, commonly associated with Chinese culture. The ‘Fat Lady’, representation of an elegant plump woman with full, rosy cheeks and a curved belly, is the embodiment of beauty. Paintings often depict the fat lady in a radical manner as either smoking a cigarette or sipping from a martini glass, thereby cutting through the narrow definitions of beauty and docility.
The fat lady is said to have first made an appearance in China during the Zhou Dynasty and was thereafter represented and recreated in art and poetry. It is today a celebrated art form that blends perfectly with the bewitching charm of the restaurant.
Far & East succeeds in creating a balance between Japanese, Chinese and Thai delights that satiate appetites in a holistic way. While the maki rolls are made to perfection, they also offer vegetarian maki with crunchy veggies providing a unique option to vegans!
The adequately cooked Peking duck and burnt garlic noodles made in a traditional wok transport guests straight Shanghai. Bringing a Thai touch is the fragrant hot jasmine rice served with spiced green curry.
No chic restaurant is complete without an array of desserts. And at Far&East, the dessert menu is as invigorating as the appetizers and mains. The much-hyped floating dessert is a feast to both the eyes and the tongue. Amidst much ado, the server walks with bamboo baskets that hang from a pole which is balanced on his shoulders amidst a haze of ice cold smoke! Each basket carries a delicious mix of Asian petit fours –Thai custard, a matcha tea infused cake, a black sesame and praline choux pastry and a yuzu cremeux dessert; all of which carry distinct flavours and textures and constitute the highlight of the meal.
The culinary team driving the restaurant carries tremendous experience from across the globe. The hotel’s Executive Chef Stephane Calvet overseas the workings of Far & East, while putting to good use the experience and insights that he gained working and living in Thailand and interacting with local chefs, farmers and artisans for multiple years. Lead by Chef Calvet is Chef Atsushi Yonaha who heads the Japanese section. The Chinese menu is nurtured by Chef Leong Then, a Four Seasons brand ambassador who has worked at the global brand’s properties in Doha, St.Petersberg, Mumbai, etc.
It is interesting to note that despite their busy schedules, the veteran chefs take time out to indulge in small talk with guests, enlightening guests with anecdotes from the kitchens and stories of their varied experiences from round the world.
The ambience, food and culinary creations are a class apart. When it comes to service, the team makes every guest feel special. Allergies and other requirements are taken care of, while interesting options are curated for vegans and vegetarians.
A place to rewind, reflect and relish gourmet offerings from the Far East. That’s Far & East!