Chandigarh's Black Lotus Redefining Authentic Chinese Flavours
Image Credit: Credits: Taj Chandigarh

Asian Treasure, the famous food festival at Black Lotus, Taj Chandigarh, is one of the major attractions in the Tricity. The first-ever fine-dine Chinese restaurant in Chandigarh is proud to celebrate authentic Chinese cuisine with exotic dishes meticulously prepared by their finest board of chefs.

While most Chinese restaurants have shifted their menus to Indo-Chinese, Black Lotus has been serving traditional flavours since the early 2000s. Their Asian food festival is, too, a testament to a menu with the most-appreciated delicacies by the guests over the years and some of the chefs’ latest creations. To give you a deeper dive into the menu, Slurrp conducted an exclusive interview with the people behind curating the fine-dine Asian menu.

The Foundation Of Black Lotus, Taj Chandigarh

Founded in 2005, Black Lotus is Chandigarh’s first fine-dining Chinese restaurant. To date, the restaurant has successfully served the traditional flavours with warmth. With their high-end clientele ranging from respected bureaucrats to retired army officers, Black Lotus boasts to have a legacy like no other.

The Food and Beverage manager, Anish Tyagi, said, “Black Lotus brings together a visual and culinary narrative picking up from the iconic scripture of the Ming Era, titled Golden Lotus. Inspired by the name of the restaurant, the three-dimensional artwork created in metal showcases the growth of a lotus and how it slowly overtakes a pond. Designed on a split level with large French windows, the restaurant offers everything right from formal private dining to a semi-formal lounge to an open-air casual dining alfresco.”

Even though the popularity of Chinese recipes spread in the country, the authentic Asian flavours were meddled with Indian spices. However, Anish Tyagi further stated, “The menu of Black Lotus draws its inspiration from the Schezwan belt of China. This region is known for the three peppers, namely, Chinese prickly ash, pepper and hot pepper. The three key aromas are shallot, ginger and garlic. Seven distinguishable tastes – sweet, sour, tingling, spicy, bitter, piquant and salty. And finally, there are eight constant flavours: fish-flavoured, sour with spice, pepper-tingling, odd flavour, tingling with spice, red spicy oily, ginger sauce, and home cooking.”

To catch the same essence, Black Lotus serves these flavours, and when tried, you can sense that the delicacies are less spicy, have a mild flavour, and, of course, are filled with a rich aroma. “Apart from using exotic ingredients, the extensive menu of Black Lotus features a wide range of appetisers like soups, dim-sums, baozi, grills, hot pots, clay pots along with plates filled with crunchy and flavourful vegetables, fish, and meat,” says Anish Tyagi

Inside The Asian Treasures Food Festival

Slurrp also spoke to the Cluster General Manager of Taj Chandigarh, Paramveer Singh, to get the insides of the Asian food festival. Paramveer Singh said, “At the heart of our Asian Treasure festival lies our commitment to culinary excellence. Our team of talented chefs, led by our esteemed Executive Chef Anuj Singh, has painstakingly crafted a menu that pays homage to the timeless classics of Chinese cuisine while infusing innovative twists that surprise and delight the palate.”

The menu features a wide range of traditional North and South Chinese delicacies. Starting from soups like lemon grass or chicken clear soup, you can soak in the authentic flavours. You can choose from an impressive range of appetisers like dim sums, fried prawns, steamed fish, pork ribs, crispy, etc, and vegetarian options like fried vegetables, lotus stem honey chilli, water chestnut chilli pepper sauce, Sichuan eggplant, and much more. Moving to the main course, you can expect both quality and quantity of lobster, prawns, Schezwan fish, Chinese green, and tofu, along with fried rice and noodles. To end it on a sweet note, you can choose from their specially curated menu.

Paramveer Singh further states, “From savoury dim sums to aromatic stir-fries, each dish is a symphony of flavours, meticulously prepared using the finest ingredients and traditional techniques. Whether you're indulging in the fiery delights of Szechuan cuisine or savouring the delicate nuances of Cantonese specialities, every bite is a testament to our dedication to culinary mastery. This festival is more than just a culinary event; it's a celebration of culture and tradition. As you dine with us, you'll discover the stories behind each dish, as well as the customs and rituals that have shaped Chinese gastronomy for centuries."

A Note By Executive Chef Anuj Singh, Taj Chandigarh

In the exclusive interview by Slurrp with the executive chef, Anuj Singh discloses, “My love for food has transcended into me becoming a chef and the life I lead now. If I had to pinpoint a moment that pushed me to become a chef, it would be when I went to Taj Lucknow back in 1999 with my father. I was probably in class 9th when I adored the food and the spotless white chef’s uniform. I belong to a family with an all-army background, and the attachment towards a uniform runs in my veins. Just like that, my interest to be a chef grew fonder and with the blink of an eye, here I am seventeen years later in the industry.”

Specialising in Indian and continental food, Anuj Singh talks about the “Taj-ness” the staff follows across the country. The chef says, “I have worked for numerous branches of the Taj in India, and the one thing that is common everywhere is the emotional connection between the staff and the guests. Building long-term relationships with our clients is what we believe in, and as a chef, familiarising myself with the palates of my guests is all the job is about. When a guest comes in, the satisfaction when they say “bring in the usual” is what brings me immense pleasure.”