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It often happens that countries, though geographically far apart, have customs that are uncannily alike. While Bengalis were celebrating their New Year last week, people in far away Thailand celebrated their New Year with the Songkran Festival 13-15 April, splashing each other with water to denote a cleansing of sins.

Benjarong, a Thai restaurant located on the third floor of South City Mall, is commemorating this twin period of happiness and new beginnings with a unique menu comprising dishes from the kitchens of royalty. Contrary to a popularly held belief in these parts, the cuisine is not homogenous throughout Thailand and shows disparate characteristics in different regions of the country — royal food being one of them. Another prevalent misconception is that Thai cuisine is all red and green curries that have a piquant taste. Chef Karthick Kumar says that not all dishes make one sweat and burn and, instead, Thai food is meant to tickle all the tastebuds with the Royal menu available till 3 May being best suited for the Bengali palate.

A refreshing mocktail with dragon berries (there are two more options) kicks off the menu, followed by an array of incredible appetisers, each distinctly flavoured, the highlights Goong Sarong (mildly spiced crispy prawns in a plum sauce), Tod mun poo (crab meat patties served with a sri racha chilli sauce) and Yum goong chiang (a lime-infused salad of chicken sausages).

The restaurant timings are 12 noon to 3 pm for lunch and 7 pm-11 pm for dinner. A meal for two costs around Rs 2,000 plus taxes.