What: The Melting Pot: Market Cafe
Where: Intercontinental Chennai, Mahabalipuram Resort, Nemeli Village, Mahabalipuram, Chennai
Cuisine: North Indian, South Indian, Continental
A perfect weekend getaway spot and a few kilometres after Crocodile Bank is Intercontinental Chennai (ICC) Resort. As you walk down the corridor your heart melts witnessing the cosy-romantic diner and you know why they call it 'Melting Pot'. The distance stood as the major reason to postpone my visit to ICC but thanks to them for hosting a contest and I was more elated when I won a Sunday Brunch at Melting Pot for two. The plan came along and we walked through the doors to enjoy their extravagant market setup for the brunch. The spread was humongous, starting from cold salad bar to three counters for three cuisines and finally the desserts.
As I got startled to understand the brunch concept, the Chef's were extremely friendly to take me on a tour explaining about the whole idea. Yes, as the name Market Cafe rings it is a market setup where you have different counters. After the Cold Salad and Chat counter, there is three counters for each cuisine: Continental, Indian and Asian. With live kitchen and buffet dishes, it is a ideal chance to talk with the Chef, share your preferences and enjoy a meal of your choice. And finally two huge counters just for desserts.
And I was up for game to explore every possible dish in the spread. I went for a Orange mocktail and I thoroughly loved it. And my partner went for Lychee and Vodka based Cocktail and loved it a lot that he kept asking for refill.
First was the Salad, starting from hummus to terrine to fresh salads and chats the varieties seemed never-ending. Filled my plate with some terrine, pita, hummus, baba ghanoush and salads. Never a fan of terrine but still I wanted to try and it never is my type of food. The pita bread with hummus, falafel and baba ghanoush was bang-on in taste, loved it to bits. And the salads, the freshness from Tomato Bocconccini salad with Basil Pesto and the refreshing Green Apple and Dry Fruits salad just cleanses your palate. The Grilled Eggplant and Asparagus salad and Steamed Broccoli salad were light and brilliant addition to the salad counter.
|Choose your pasta!|
Bajjis and more bajjis and different bajjis, and without much thought I wanted one of each. The hot Bajjiyas were yum, the Fish, Chicken and Paneer bajji were the best; the meats were juicy and delicious as well the potato stuffed inside the softest chunk of paneer was another delight. The Chilly and Onion Bajjiyas were the usual.
I was loaded with food and there they continue to serve Chicken 65 and Paneer Tikka. The flavours were there but the paneer was dry and the masala used for the chicken didn't seem right as there was specific spice that was overpowering. The soups were light and flavoursome, the garlic soup from the Asian counter and chicken soup from continental were good.
In sometime, the steaming hot Dimsum basket made its way to the table. I loved both the Veg and Chicken Dimsum with the chilli sauce. A heavy tummy that screamed 'No' but my heart wouldn't let me go for desserts without trying the sushi and food from the Asian Counter.
I know Sushi isn't my bowl of food and their isn't something like veg sushi but respecting the taste and palate of Indians the buffet had varied veg and non-veg sushi. Of course I preferred the veg and I did like them. The Fried Rice was the best followed by the Pad Thai Noodles.
You can also make your own Asian bowl. I went for a bowl of noodles, fried onions, peanuts, veggies and Thai green curry, which was a delight in all senses. Took my time, released and sipped through some juice before heading to the desserts. As I wanted to taste every single piece of sweet, we both took charge of one counter each and grabbed all the desserts.
After a overload of sweet, I still continued to take a second bite of my favourite ones. The chocolate delicacies are a hit and it shall be hard to resist yourself; I loved the usage of different chocolates; the brownies, cakes and mousses were deliciousness. And a special mention to the tart base that was flaky and baked well. The mango desserts seemed like a let-down, the sourness happened to be a spoiler. Whereas the cookies and chocolate bars were yum.
Surplus food and we did take our time to move any further. That lavish spread comes for the price of Rs.1999 INR without alcohol and Rs.2499 INR with alcohol (taxes extra).
A special mention and thanks to the Chef of Melting Pot to treat us with a few of his signature dishes. They were a delight indeed. The Scallop with pumpkin puree, crispy bits of prosciutto and fresh vegetables was a pleasure for both the palate and eyes. And for an Italian food lover there won't be a better dish, the Mushroom Risotto that is overloaded with cheese, the hit of freshness from the cream and the salty-dehydrated and fried cauliflower and raw banana to cut down the richness, this is a dish I would be happy to eat forever. That dish definitely made me curious enough to check them out again for their A La Carte menu. Finally, sipped through the Curry Leaves & Basil cooler and Drumstick & Lemon cooler that just cleanses and refreshes your palate.
Breaking Down Points
Location & Parking: Good. Perfect spot for a getaway from hectic city life; valet parking.
Ambience: Positive. Beauty personified.
Food Variety: Positive. The brunch is splendid and never-ending.
Taste: Good. There were both pros and cons but overall food was good. Definitely their A La Carte menu is brilliant
Quality & Quantity: Positive. I truly liked the brunch spread and idea behind it. It's unlimited so your tummy decides the limit.
Service: Positive. You will feel pampered; not because I won the contest or I am a blogger I found them treating each diner the very same way.
Price: NA. Cost for two is Rs. 4500 INR (excluding tax) for the Sunday Brunch approximately. They are Extremely Expensive so if you're looking for a royal food treatment and ready to spend then you are up for some food extravaganza.
So my Verdict!
Melting Pot, Sunday Brunch! If not the ambience than it shall be the food that would melt your heart. I am the living example for the saying, "the way to my heart is through my stomach", and I guess they have found the route to heart. Mesmerising place, a royal brunch spread, flawless service and good food is all you need for a weekend getaway.
P.S. This write-up is based on my food palate & dining experience during my restaurant visit. I won the Contest conducted by ICC and the price is Sunday Brunch for two at Melting Pot. Remember, no two person's food palate can be same. And this post is only for the Sunday Brunch.
Sunday Brunch at The Melting Pot: Market Cafe, Intercontinental Chennai Reviewed by Divya Srinivasan on 13:32 Rating: