United States and worldwide cafe review

Chutnify: From Berlin to Lisbon, arrived at the indian restaurant, modern and fun

Days after the string of north american television CNN have pointed to london as the new Berlin, the German capital has come to the Príncipe Real, a new concept of indian cuisine: modern, informal, colourful and, why not, fun. Is called Chutnify and arrived at the Portuguese capital result (also) of the passion of Aparna Aurora, fashion designer, Portugal and, more precisely, to Lisbon. True citizen of the world, Aparna was born in New Delhi, but have studied and lived in countries and cities as diverse as Hong Kong, London, Australia, New York, Brazil and Madrid, even if it is based in the renovated and bustling Berlin, the capital of the reunified Germany. In this vibrant city, Aparna followed the entrepreneurial spirit that breathes in every corner and opened two restaurants of indian cuisine “authentic and inspired in many dishes from the street food of south India”. In other words (the best is to prove), the restaurants Chutnify aim to “reveal the true indian flavors,” and, at the same time, give the “show a bit of the modern culture of India”. Guaranteed, the new Chutnify Lisbon (Travessa da Palmeira, 46, Lisbon. Tel. 213 461 534) is not “another” indian restaurant in Lisbon! In the same way that the two existing in Berlin paved the way for a new perspective on indian culture, beyond History, and Bollywood.

As soon at the first glance one realizes that the restaurant Chutnify promises something different and vibrant. The colors of the facade (yellow) and the awning in blue, with the inscription “Modern Indian Food” are invited to peek. At the entrance, the desk (at the end of the meal ask for the goddess Ganesha – always discreetly present in all three restaurants Aparna – and by its symbolism) offers a half-dozen high stools for a lemonade “indian”, a kind of welcome drink, named “Nimboo Pani”, which is sweet and salty at the same time. Alternatively, it is suggested that sample a coconut water canned, imported from Germany or one of the fun cocktails, who have already won fame in Berlin.

In the interior, once more, is obliged to leave part all the stereotypes related to indian restaurants in Portugal (and not only!). The decoration of the Chutnify Lisbon, such as their “brothers” berliners have the signature of an interior designer in mexico, Antonio Medina, and one can describe as in the style of “Bollywood kitsch”. In addition to strong colors, you will find several loose objects, tables and chairs that seem to exits any auction of “vintage” and ware, purposely designed for the restaurant, highlighting the dishes of pottery signed by the Portuguese industrial designer João Abreu Valente.

An important note: the kitchen is a view of about 40 seats in the restaurant. Because, as he says Aparna Aurora: “we have nothing to hide. On the contrary, we want everyone to know of the true indian flavors. This authenticity allows customers to learn and enjoy something new in a fun atmosphere, and unpretentious.” It is in this context, and also due to the “intense relationship that the Portuguese have with indian food”, that the Chutnify Lisbon has already begun to align workshops of the kitchen in your schedule for the winter.

For now, the most important is to earn the trust of the locals, with the guarantee that the vast majority of the sauces and mixtures of spices which are prepared daily by the kitchen staff (the chef came directly from India) and with the big surprise are the prices charged by the Chutnify. The dish most expensive card costs €15 (sea Bass in a sauce base of coconut milk, mustard seed, and ginger) and the tasting menu, with six moments (served for a minimum of two people), is €28.

Another way to realize that the Chutnify is an indian restaurant that is different is bet on a dish that they “never or very rarely” appears in the tables national: Dosa, a crepe is very thin, originating from the south of India, and which is made of lentils and rice flour. Such as in crepes, which makes the difference, for the better, is the filling chosen for each meal and, in the case of this restaurant, the chutney of coconut that comes to the party. Thus, in addition to the “Plain Dosa”, the simple version, there are the “Duck Dosa”, filled with meat from the leg of duck (€12), the “Cheese Dosa”, filled with cheese, tomato, peppers and coriander (€9,50) and the famous – for already in Berlin – “Masala Dosa”, stuffed with potatoes (€8,20). To complement or to discover, there are various sauces and salads, as well as the well-known Naan, plain or garlic, but also in versions that are more exotic such as “Peshawari”, with nuts and raisins golden, and “Keema”, with lamb chopped (€3,50).

As you would expect, there are in the letter, various curry dishes, such as “Telangana Lamb Curry”, with pieces of lamb cooked slowly in spices from Andhra (one of the States of south India) and “Malabar Chicken Curry”, with the chicken thighs are sautéed with coconut and curry leaves.. In addition to the sea bass, already referred to in the text, there are two vegetarian options: “Bagare Baingan” (Eggplant, peanut, tamarind and coconut) and “Punjabi Chole” (chickpeas cooked with spices in Punjabi). The prices vary between €9 and €15. For two people, it presents the specialty of the house, “Mutton Biryani” (€13), made up of rice with goat meat and spices served with raita (yogurt mixed with vegetables).

In the entries, which can be ordered and shared, so the experience is more comprehensive, the greater emphasis goes to the “Pani Puri” (€4,50), a dish typically served on the streets of India, and that obeys a certain art of service. The puri (small ball of wheat chips, and with a small hole is stuffed with grain, potato and pomegranate. Arrives at the table, accompanied by a gravy boat with water seasoned with spices. With a spoon, put the “water” inside the puri and then takes to the mouth. Accept the advice: eat at once and prepare for the impact of spicy! (Aparna ensures that the levels of spicy, duly identified in the charter, were adjusted to the palate Portuguese).

Other options, in the entries, pass by the famous samosas, here identified as “Parsnip Samosa”, whose filling is made of cherovia, potato and pea, and presented with pomegranate seeds and different kinds of vegetables, and the Kabab of lamb (€6,50) or salmon (€7,50) grilled in Tandoor oven.

The restaurant Chutnify will, for now, to work only for dinner, Tuesday to Sunday from 19.00 to 0h00.

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