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Amoeba takes new shape



Three Quarter Chinese: food and space aplenty

AMOEBA, BANGALORE'S largest entertainment complex, has a new addition — the ground floor of the building now houses Three Quarter Chinese, billed Bangalore's largest restaurant.

Not that there is anything distinctly Chinese about the ambiance of the restaurant. Dim lights, tasseled oriental lamps, Feng Shui artefacts, and so on, which make up the décor of most Chinese eating places, are not to be seen here. It, instead, has a modernistic steel look and is furnished in shades of green and golden brown. Soft lamps reflect light from tiny quartz crystals in the pillars around the seating area, creating a starry ambience.

Besides the futuristic interior design, what is most striking about Three Quarter Chinese is the sheer size of the place. The restaurant encompasses an 8,000 square feet area and is located on the ground floor of the multi-level building. It can accommodate 250 people and separate areas have been marked out for families and corporates. One entire wall is arrayed with booths for a comfortable meal with family or friends. Next to it are tables for 12 to 16 people. There are also tables for groups of four and cozy twos.

Three Quarter Chinese has an expansive lounge bar and seating area for business people who choose to relax with a drink or wish to hold an informal meeting separate from the restaurant. It also offers two conference rooms for private gatherings.

The rather queer-sounding name of the place cleverly reflects what the menu offers — mostly authentic Chinese cuisine and a bit of traditional Awadh fare. This mix of Nawabi and Chinese cuisine is meant to please the cosmopolitan Bangalorean palate. Traditional cooks from Lucknow oversee the Nawabi section of the menu. The Chinese food is designed by Chef Brando, who, incidentally, was a pioneer in introducing Chinese cuisine to India in the 1970s. Having more than 23 years experience with The Taj Group, he has been flown in from Hong Kong.

In the Chinese section, one can opt for the steamed or fried dim sum with chicken, vegetable, lamb, or prawn stuffing. Lat mei kai (dry chilly chicken with soya), fried spinach chicken, squid pepper chilly, fried and toasted sesame prawn, and crackling spinach are available for starters. Among the more unusual soups on offer are the shark fin soup, fish and turnip soup, crab meat soup, prawn thick soup, and peppery lemon soup.

One of the specialities, lung har or lobster, is priced according to size and is served either in chilly black bean sauce, oyster sauce, or mustard sauce.

The ming har or jumbo prawns are served with slow fried yuheng chilly sauce, hoisin sauce, spicy tobanjan sauce, chilly mustard sauce, or Thai green curry. There is also lat-chiu hai yuk or chilly crab meat for seafood lovers. Chicken here is served with lemon sauce, lat che chilly sauce, Thai red curry, or sweet 'n' sour sauce, as a casserole or sizzler. Another item on the menu that warrants mention is the aph (duck) served in plum sauce, barbeque sauce or soya sauce. Vegetarians won't be disappointed either. The bean curd and dry cooked French beans prove to be interesting alternatives to the standard fare. The dessert menu provides diners with a large number of authentic Chinese indulgences such as dan saan ping kelum (sesame honey noodles with ice cream), sesame walnut toffee with ice cream, pineapple fritters, toffee apple or banana, date pancakes, and lychees with ice cream.

Though the prices are a bit steep, (a meal for two would cost around Rs. 600), those who come here are assured of authentic cuisine served in an exclusive setting.

K. Nand Kumar, the General Manager of the group, says: "We are very proud of Amoeba and the new restaurant which will add considerably to its reputation of leisure entertainment."

Three Quarter Chinese is located at Amoeba on Church Street. For reservations call 5594632.

SOMIKA BASU

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