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TAMARIND OPENS UP IN CALIFORNIA


London-based Tamarind, which has received a Michelin star for each of the past 11 years, is launching its first US loca- tion, Tamarind of London, in Newport Beach, California.


“The US is poised for a paradigm shift in dining,” explains Randy Hiatt, whose company, Fessel International, has been entrusted with the task of introducing the Tamarind concept to America. “Indian cuisine and flavours are being embraced by more and more American consumers each year, espe- cially as a crossover cuisine.”


While Tamarind’s success in the UK has paved the way for the US Tamarind of London venture, there will be some dif- ferences in approach. The fine dining setting of London has been recast as an upmarket but casual restaurant, which better suits the American dining public. Fessel International has teamed up with Steven Langford Architects on the design of the US $3 million restaurant, which aims to blend ‘cultural authenticity with mainstream accessibility’. “Tamarind of London’s design is rooted in American restaurant tradition,” according to Mr Langford. “We layered this concept with India’s timeless architectural forms, materials, colours and art and blended it with more familiar Western influences.”


Upon entering, guests are greeted by the exhibition kitchen complete with three large crimson tandoor ovens as its centrepiece. Guests can choose to dine at tables on the main floor, private booths along the perimeter or a commu- nal table that offers a bird’s-eye view of the kitchen. The Garden Room, complete with retractable walls, the chef’s herb garden, a water feature and fire pits, will contain 54 of the restaurant’s 145 seats and will also include a bar. Indian born Chef Shachi Mehra is taking the helm of culinary operations and she is working closely with London-based Executive Chef Alfred Prasad.


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In another important initiative for Tamarind it has joined forces with sister restaurant, Imli, to deliver a range of dishes for sale in Harrods famed Food Hall. These are being sold by weight or by the piece allowing guests to assemble a meal of their choosing. “We couldn’t be more honoured to have been chosen by Harrods to represent London’s con- temporary Indian food scene at its famous Food Halls,” says the Tamarind Group’s chief executive, Rajesh Suri. “We look forward to working with Harrods and sharing our passion and experience with its customers.”


Tamarind’s executive chef, Alfred Prasad, has whittled the Tamarind and Imli menus to a selection of signature clas- sics. Examples of Tamarind dishes that can be found at Harrods include Kingfish Curry, Murgh Makhni and Lamb Rogan Josh. Lovers of Tamarind’s date, coconut and pop- pyseed naans and mint parathas will also be able to get their fix at Harrods.


The menu further features Imli’s Chicken Kabab, I Smoked Chicken and Wild Rice, Paneer and Walnut salads and ‘naan- wiches’, as well as its chutneys, raitas and cheese and chive naans.


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