Signature Tastings with Caroline Martin and Ranveer Brar are bringing the ‘F’ and ‘B’ of F&B togetherSohini Mitter
A Master Chef and a Master Blender are bringing the best food and whiskey combos to Indian diners in association with Signature Premium Whiskey.
The buzz around F&B in India is significant. Scores of new restaurants, cafes and bars are mushrooming by the day, especially in the metros. Innovative menus, experiments in the kitchen, and unique dining experiences are nearly par now.
But, food combos? Sure, McDonald’s does a coke and burger fairly well. The local dhaba delivers a blockbuster with lassi and parantha. But, there’s little else to write home about.
Or so thinks Master Chef Ranveer Brar, who’s collaborating with renowned Master Blender Caroline Martin to bring the best food-and-whisky combos to Indian gastronomes.
At a Signature Tastings masterclass in Mumbai, Brar tells us, “This is the real coming together of food and beverage. We always call it F&B. But, there are two kinds of places, where the ‘F’ is really big and the ‘B’ is small, and vice versa. There is a big opportunity for India to be a balanced F&B country like the rest of the world.”
Food and whiskey come together “amazingly well” says Ranveer. Both enhance each other in flavour and taste and accentuate the experience. Signature as a brand is committed to delivering such innovative dining experiences.
Caroline, a blender for three decades who spends most of her time blending scotch, says, “Indian whiskeys are quite different. Through crafting the Signature blends, I have started to appreciate how whiskey flavours work best with food. For the first time, I am sampling some authentic Indian food too.”
At the Signature Tastings masterclass, the audience was treated to Caroline and Ranveer using Signature Premium Whisky to curate a special menu. Caroline says, “We’re trying to explore different avenues of using whiskey, either as food ingredient or as drink. We’re telling people that they can drink whiskey the way they want to.”
So, what is the best whiskey-food pairing then?
Ranveer says, “I’ve always liked tandoori chicken with Signature. Besides that, pies tend to go well with smoked whiskeys.”
He adds, however, that ‘pairing’ is not in our dining culture. Restaurant-owners offer very limited pairing menus because customers never order them.
Talking about the Signature Tastings association, in what is her first time in India, Caroline says, “Indian whiskies are really good in quality and they appeal to a different consumer palate too. There were some combos that appealed to me, but I was wondering if it would appeal to the Indian consumers.”
“Ranveer and I are bouncing ideas off each other,” she adds.
The Signature Tastings with the Master Blenders is being held across five cities from February 19-23, kicking off in Bangalore, and moving on to Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Guwahati, in that order. Participate in the #MySignaturePairing Contest to be a part of it!