Meaty melange

Anindita Satpathi        Print Edition: September 13, 2015
Meaty melange: The long-winded brunch at Creo is a must-try

The languorous aspect of indulgence touches a pinnacle in the act of brunch. Sanctioned gorging a la Gaul style till the early hours of the evening is a proven mood-lifter on a Sunday. Boozy brunches top the list, ironically, to counter the effects of last night's drunken revelry. By contrast, there are brunches that ditch the ubiquitous eggs to serve up interesting fare that holds its own without cocktails. The brunch at Vivanta by Taj Dwarka's all-day dining restaurant, Creo, is a bright-eyed affair partly because there are no mimosas in sight. For full effect, opt for breezy linen and lose the glares.

The Sunday we dropped in, the atmosphere was carnival-esque thanks to the packed tables and a slightly off-key crooner. The interiors are informal with a smidgeon of comfy and lots of style. The decor sections the space off into coves and nooks for a more intimate feel.

On offer is a medley of European, Japanese and Indian dishes that tick most boxes. The antipasto corner offers refreshing combinations in the form of slow-roasted tomatoes and ricotta and aubergine and feta.

The dense softness of aubergine offsets the crumbly texture of feta. The prawn cocktail is expectedly good with lusciously plump prawns drenched in a cold sauce. The smoked duck and pimento with orange segments is delicious and plays on the contrast between flavours. The lightly seasoned turkey lyoner is a lovely accompaniment to the vinegary intensity of olives. The roast pork, while very appetising to look at, turned out to be stringy. The braised lamb with couscous stands out. It has a hint of prune-y sweetness offset by the fragrant jus of the lamb. The couscous adds the textural element. The Chilean Sea Bass with peppers is not exceptional but proves to be toothsome. The top dish from the European meat section were the tenderloin medallions with a gooey filling. It's delectable with a smattering of cranberries and rocket leaves.

The bread counter is a gluten-fearing eater's worst temptation. There's a wide array of loaves and rolls meant to be drenched in an olive oil dip. The non-veg dimsums in a rice paper shell are good and made better by the range of accompanying sauces. The fish and shitake mushroom teppanyaki comes in a dense, sweet sauce. The chewy mushrooms complement the flaky fish nestled in pak choi, with carmelised garlic as the crunch element. The mini-sized sushi adds a fun dimension to the Japanese counter. They're delicious but there isn't a vast variety to choose from.

The Thai veg curry has a soupy, spicy edge accentuated by the flavour of lemongrass. The Goan fish curry, one of the few things I sampled from the Indian section, is a sour gravy tempered with lentils. It's refreshingly different. The cheese platter has varieties of cheddar and emmental paired with prunes. Wash it down with juice shots of litchi and beetroot.

The dessert spread is practically never-ending. The beetroot halwa is gorgeously light. Follow it with the passion fruit curd and meringue. The carrot cake with buttercream frosting is a tad disappointing though the frosting is spot-on. The philadelphia cheesecake is perfect and the Belgian chocolate mousse beyond reproach. The velvet cheesecake and cheese frosting on vanilla slices are good for the kids.  

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