Restaurant Review: Tresind Studio
Chef Himanshu Saini's latest initiative is a 16-course epicurean delight
Conceptualised by Chef Himanshu Saini, the Trèsind Studio is a premium epicurean experience, located within a private section of the Trèsind restaurant. Boasting 16 tasting courses, the Studio consists of a personalised culinary journey that uniquely pairs ingredients from across India to serve courses that are aimed to delight. The Chef, known in the city for his experimental modernist Indian cooking, has created a small space dedicated to a diverse tasting menu for culinary enthusiasts. Staying true to the etiquette of tasting menus, the courses are served in small portions, ensuring that the palate remains the focus right through the courses without being weighed down by the richness of Indian food.
Our experience began with a nudge of experimentation at the bar, where presentation and theatrics is given equal importance. There’s a good variety of cocktails to choose from with our favourite one of their several versions of the ‘Old Fashioned’, a classic favourite. Moving onto the food, it began with a vessel dramatically spilling aromatic smoke around us. An appetizer in the form of smoke? We’re definitely on board.
What followed were courses that were made of iconic Indian flavours, deconstructed with a contemporary twist. Take the Pani Puri for instance. The ice-cold course had a soft punch of flavour with perhaps too much crunch in its texture. Next, was a soft bread made of chickpea, served with a side of butter to spread. Earthy and homely but not unforgettable.
The Chef’s infamous Chaat Trolley was condensed to a beautifully served Chaat Tart that cohesively combined the sweetness and sourness of the popular street flavours with the right kick. Following this was the course that’s been the rage in town. The Mushroom Truffle Ravioli with a liquid filling, served in a broth of Mushroom Chai. This is an evolution of the wildly popular Mushroom Chai and it smoothly sneaks its way into the list of favourites of the night.
Another favourite was the Goan Chicken Curry served on a crisp Shiso leaf. It had everything going for it with its mélange of delicate textures and complimentary flavours. While these were some of the highlights of the first half, we enjoyed the post-palate cleanser courses even more. Perhaps, the popping candy on the sorbet did its trick.
While the Wagyu beef with 5 different curries was a bold attempt, we think the strength of each curry preyed on the weakness of the other and they failed to make an impact as a team. It was a battle our palate wasn’t willing to fight.
But rising like the phoenix from its ashes, the next course was the clear winner of the night, while being the most surprising – the Dal Khichdi. This incredibly simple dish, cooked in almost every home in a country of over 1.3 billion people, was ironically the stand-out. While this had our favourite theatrics surrounding the preparation, it took the trophy purely for its flavours. It was perfection.
The transition into desserts was done smoothly with the Pineapple and Coconut Payasam that came with a pickling of savoury flavours, balanced well with its inherent sweetness. Amongst the desserts, we appreciated the presentation of the deconstructed Black Forest dessert with delightful plating but the Petit Fours served in a box is the one that – excuse the wordplay – truly took it out of the box. Each of the sweet bites had a completely different appeal and one’d definitely find a favourite without question.
Having had a grand culinary experience, we were offered a variety of teas on a trolley. If you’re a tea-person, you’ll appreciate the unique blends.
So, the verdict?
The experience at Tresind Studio is uniquely enriching culturally, in that, it takes traditional elements from across the country, North to South and East to West and gives you a modern indulgence for the palate. Give it a shot.