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Midnight feast

The midnight buffet at Chesterfield, Muthoot Plaza's coffee shop-cum-bar, beckons gourmands.


THE MIDNIGHT buffet in Chesterfield, the coffee shop-cum-bar at Muthoot Plaza, seems to have set a trend. The idea of introducing a midnight buffet in a city that has practically no nightlife would have been quite a risk.

Says Samin Joseph Mathew, assistant manager, Food and Beverages (F&B) of Chesterfield, "We did a bit of survey before venturing into this. We met a lot of people and found out what they really wanted to eat at night. The buffet was initially planned for only a few weeks. With the kind of enthusiasm and response that we received, we have extended the buffet to a few more weeks."

The buffet is aimed at late-night travellers, moviegoers and those who would like to venture out at night. "It is a false notion that people here would like to sit cooped up at home every night. Given a chance they would also like to go out and enjoy. This is exactly what we are trying to tap. We plan to cater to the local crowd," says Samin.

The main dishes include puttu (rice cake), Malabar paratha, idiyappam and thattu dosa. The menu also offers vegetable soup, five kinds of salads, three vegetarian dishes and three non-vegetarian dishes with gravy, complete with desserts.

Chesterfield is the place one can relax and have a leisurely dinner and drinks. These days, you can do this, watching the highlights of the World Cup matches. For a star hotel, the Muthoot's buffet comes cheap at Rs. 195 per head. "Once we decided on introducing the buffet, the local dishes were the natural choice," says Vimal Sebastain, Sous Chef. After a late-night rendezvous, sandwiches and pizzas would be the last thing on the minds of people. "Give them rice, fish curry and pickle and they will be a happy lot. That is exactly what we are doing here. And the response has been tremendous," adds Samin. Interestingly, the coffee shop derives its name from the Chesterfield leather furniture used here. And the ambience is just perfect, with the sound of flowing water from the miniature waterfall in the background to the the furniture to the antique wall clocks decorating the room.

Sweet corn vegetable soup, served piping hot, acts as a real appetiser and tastes quite rich. The Meen Vattichathu and Murg Manpasanda vie with each other to tickle your taste buds. But the piece de resistance is Beef and Potato curry, a typical Kerala dish made in pure coconut milk. The vegetarian dishes are also equally tasty. Green Peas Masala and Sambar are perfect accompaniments for the Paratha and Dosa. Babycorn fritters make up for crispies and are yummy.

The dessert section has a variety of ice creams. The local sweetmeat, payasam, or gulab jamuns are also on offer. Choco-cheese flan is a soft crust pastry that simply melts in your mouth. Fruit salad -- an indispensable part of buffet -- with a liberal dose of seasonal fruits can also be had.

So, all you gourmands , get ready for action on the other side of midnight.

AMBIKA VARMA

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