To start with, I would like to thank Zomato for inviting me to The Studio, Novotel at the foodie meet-up which happened to be my third Zomato meetup! I had been to Novotel couple of times before and it happens to be very close to my place! There is very little to say about Novotel which has its headquarters in France with around 400 hotels and resorts across the globe! My words are not enough to describe the high standards of quality and magnificence of this place which has started its operations couple of years ago in Kolkata.
Location – – – – – This sprawling property is present in Newtown (action area-1) just beside the Axis Mall. Locating it is not an issue and you obviously need not worry about the car parking either since you get valet parking here.
Ambiance – – – – – The grandiose interiors leaves you mesmerized whenever you are inside this property and of course the ambiance of Studio (which is said to be an Asian culinary gallery with five Asian cuisines, rather than just another restaurant), is also very classy and urbane. The huge glass walls overlooking the pool, the wooden-step walls and ceilings, the classic furniture and pretty cutlery sets uplifts your mood whenever you walk into this place. And of course, for the Zomato meet-up the place was all decked up and ready to greet all the guests for the event. Also in general, the seating arrangement is very spaced out and the overall ambiance is pretty relaxed and warm.
Food – – – – – There were loads on the menu frankly speaking 🙂 and I strived hard to taste most of them, here are the items I had tasted –
1) Studio Mist – This was the welcome drink, one of the most refreshing welcome drinks I have had, it had an unusual mix of Asian flavors and ingredients and had cinnamon, pineapple juice, kaafir lime, hint of basil, etc.
2) Summer Rain – It was an orange flavored cocktail served in a martini glass loaded with some huge kick, that’s all I can say 🙂 One of the tastiest cocktails I’ve had in a long time!
3) Rainforest – It was a watermelon based mocktail with pieces and bits of watermelon in it, very refreshing and presented quite beautifully.
4) Coco Cucumber – Intensely flavorful refreshing drink for the summers with fresh cucumber bits in it, surely try this out if you are here during the summers!
5) Crispy Tofu – Well, it was nice and fresh but served in small quantity. We were told that most of their dishes have small quantities so that you can taste many dishes at one shot or rather in one single visit. I found that to be one nice thought but some may not appreciate it since that will make your bill amount go up!
6) Yasai Kakiage – It was fried six flavored vegetable tempura, nice and mild; add some red chilli paste and have it!
7) Chicken and Glass Noodle Spring Rolls – Oh man I loved these! It was an Asian style spring roll loaded with chicken and glass noodles with a typical sauce that they call the ‘studio dressing’.
8) Prawn Tempura – Again a must have at this place, golden fried crisp prawns in freshly grated ginger and inimitable tempura sauce!
9) Water Chestnut delight Dimsum – The dimsums were the winner for sure and this water chestnut delight dimsum was flavorful and green in color with a pomegranate bit topping.
10) Prawn manti Dimsum – One of the star items I had at this place, it has got a yellowish tinge to it and an out-of-the-world taste, maybe I could have had 10-12 pieces of this at one shot 🙂 It had a fresh piece of prawn sitting inside the dimsum with one amazing overall flavor! Also it was presented very well. Must try if you are here!
11) Tom Yum Cavier soup – It was a lovely soothing tom yum soup with cherry tomatoes, lemon juice, roasted chilies, lemon grass and garnished with coriander leaves.
12) Dragon Roll Sushi – Though I am not a fan of Sushi but I am glad that I had tried the dragon roll sushi here at Studio, it was very soothing with a piece of prawn in it, served with wasabi, soya sauce, tempura prawn and crunchy tempura crumbles.
13) Cashew Prawns – Very fresh preparation of shrimps which were handsome in size and drenched in ma la sauce, cashew nuts and tri color pepper!
14) Thai green curry with steamed rice – One of my favorite Thai dishes which I try and cook at my home as well! Anyway, here the flavor was fresh and beautiful and very aromatic as it should be. The tastes of sweet basil, fresh coriander, dash of bird’s eye chilies, kaafir lime, lemon grass was irresistible and you can surely have some good amount of steamed rice with this. Loved this!
15) Fermented beans chicken – This one nice and spicy dry preparation of chicken to go with the fried rice or noodles with water chestnut and Chinese mushrooms!
16) Hot Basil Fried rice – It was again one amazing preparation with spicy bird’s eye chilies and basil leaves. Loved the intense flavors it offered.
17) Spicy Garlic Noodles – Again this was a nicely prepared dish with sesame oil in fresh garlic that gave the aroma and spicy kick which I always prefer.
There were many more items on the set menu along with the desserts (like tarts and mousses) which I could not end up having since I had to rush for another appointment 🙂
SERVICE – – – – – The service was really amazing out here, I had been to Novotel before and I know this great service is not because of the Zomato meet-up; service is always top-notch here at Novotel, very courteous, helpful, warm and friendly. Would like to specially thank Neelabh, the master chef behind this amazing lunch!
SUMMARY – – – – – Here are my granular ratings:
Food quality: 4.1/5
Food presentation: 4.2/5
Food quantity: 3.3/5
Overall rating comes to 4 out of 5. The great ambiance, service, food and beverages combined together gives you every reason to visit this newly opened Studio at Novotel! This was a complementary meal from Zomato and I would like to thank Kaustav, Samridhi, Diptak and everyone at Kolkata Zomato team for arranging this wonderful event at this amazing venue! For every foodie and lover of Asian cuisine this place has got all the ingredients to satisfy your soul and is the perfect spot to make great memories.