Sienna Cafe, the homegrown brand from Calcutta, known for its unique approach to food and showcasing Bengal's ingredients, has partnered with The Lodhi in New Delhi to bring their culinary journey to the capital. The pop-up, which took place from April 14th to 16th, showcased the quintessential flavours of authentic Bengali recipes inspired by the region's bountiful "Baajars."
Chef Auroni Mookerjee, the man behind Sienna, was excited to bring his restaurant to Delhi for the first time. The Delhi-bred Bengali boy, who is passionate about changing the city's culinary scene with simple innovations and sustainably sourced, hyperlocal ingredients, believes that the association with The Lodhi will help him showcase the best of regional, innovative cuisine and foster a spirit of inclusivity among diverse communities and gastronomes.
The limited-edition tasting menu was a culinary journey through the "Baajars" of Bengal, showcasing the distinctive produce of the region. The Sienna kitchen family works with local farmers, small-batch producers, home cooks, and local artisans to bring the unique flavours of Bengal to the table. Sienna's creative nerve centre is in Shantiniketan surrounded by lush greenery, where talented artisans from the surrounding village of Daronda have spent their days moulding earthenware into existence since 1998.
What makes Sienna unique is that their menu is contemporary, and borderless yet grounded in community and culture. Sienna's commitment to supporting the local community is at the heart of everything they do. Speaking about the pop-up, Rini Chatterjee, Founder of Canary Yellow Media, said, "We are delighted to bring intriguing stories of talented Chefs from the deeper geographies of India, chefs who are passionately focussing on regional Indian food."
I was happy to see their invitation as for me it was an opportunity to learn more about the nuances of Bengali cuisine. Although I never really tried the local cuisine, whenever I visited Kolkata, I always made sure to indulge in street food like kathi rolls, jhalmuri, puchkas, and mishti. I was quite impressed by the sequence in which Bengalis eat their food, starting with a bitter palate, moving to bhaja and ending with mishti. I was also fascinated by the ritual of Bengali households visiting the market every morning to get the freshest produce for the day.
Sienna Cafe's culinary journey through the "Baajars" of Bengal was a unique experience that showcased the region's distinctive produce and ingredients. The limited-edition tasting menu, available at The Lodhi, New Delhi, was a contemporary take on traditional Bengali cuisine, grounded in community and culture. With this partnership, Sienna aims to showcase the best of regional, innovative cuisine and foster a spirit of inclusivity among diverse communities and gastronomes.