This is my father’s magnum opus, a culmination of his over 40 years of experience in the restaurant industry,” says Zorawar Kalra, son of celebrity chef Jiggs Kalra, setting a rather high benchmark for their new venture. The restaurant, Masala Library, will open at the Bandra-Kurla Complex on August 4.
The establishment aims to take Indian fine-dining to a new level, and Kalra has dreams of landing a Michelin star for his eatery. Tandoors from Lucknow, molecular gastronomy lab equipment from Delhi and special ingredients from around the world have already been flown in. Kalra has also spared no expense in the decor and the staff’s attires. “It’s Indian fine-dining 2.0. We’re doing away with the staid, ’80’s way of serving curry in a bowl with a swirl of cream, and taking Indian cuisine to the 21st century,” he says.
The menu is ambitious, to say the least. “We plan on serving food from across the country. For this we have devised three pillars; progressive Indian cuisine, where the basic flavours and methods of preparation remain traditional but the presentation and accompaniments are modern; kebab trail, where we will serve kebabs ranging from classic north Indian to lesser-known south Indian ones; and the curry trail, which will take you on a gravy tour to all corners of India,” says Kalra.
For one of their dishes, the garnishing involves 16 local and imported ingredients. The restaurateur, who studied business management in the US, wants Masala Library to be the one-stop shop for all your regional food cravings. “If your international friends were to visit the city and you wanted to take them to a place to sample cuisine from all over India, then this would be it,” he says.