Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 5, Issue 42, Tuesday October 28, 2008



News Flash

Italian extravaganza @ Radisson

There's not much to do when it comes to recreation in Dhaka city, except maybe the occasional theatre or visiting local galleries for exhibitions. Which is why, dining out with friends, family or a special someone is definitely among the top three options in the list of things to do for entertainment. And especially so, because I'm pretty sure that almost all of us have a slight, if not deep, affinity towards the finer thing in life. With the advent of new hotels and restaurants almost every other day, it only goes to show how the citizens of Dhaka love the new trend that is fine dining. Yet, people are constantly on the search for something more. And that is where Radisson comes in.

Radisson Water Garden Hotel Dhaka has, since their inception, been committed towards offering new and exciting experiences to all. And as part of their attempt to always introduce new foods, bring innovative cuisines and showcase fascinating cultures from countries around the world, the hotel organised an 'Italian Food Festival' from the 19 to 24 October 2008.

Executive Chef Kai-Uwe Klenz, with his experience of twenty year and vast knowledge on Italian, Romanian, Argentinean, Mexican, Japanese and Asian cuisines, along with Chef Mainul Islam, with his experience of sixteen years and his mastery over Indian, Italian and Japanese cuisines, together prepared the tantalizing dishes that were displayed throughout the six day long festival.

The festival, which was hosted in Radisson's 'Water Garden Brasserie', showcased some of the finest Italian cheese and wine, as well as mouth-watering dishes of pasta and seafood, amidst soothing music. Each dish was decorated with extreme care and grandeur, all in all, creating an ambience that portrayed pure indulgence!

What is Italian cuisine without cheese, and one of the main attractions of the event was a whole corner dedicated to finest cheese- everything from Ricotta, Blue cheese to Parmesan, all imported directly from Italy. There was also a live cooking station, where fresh pasta, such as fettuccine, ravioli, and many others were made, from which one could choose and ask the chef on standby to cook immediately from a choice of sauces, such as Napoli, Alfredo, Bolognese and other ingredients such as fresh olives, mushroom, tomatoes, etc. Also showcased, was a Risotto station that served two different types of Risottos daily.

Some of the many mouth-watering delights were dishes such as, Italian Minstrone, Stuffed Tomato Ravioli, yellow finned tuna freshly pan-fried in crushed pepper butter, Vitello Tonato, Smoked Mediterranean Monk fish, Picatta alla Milanese, and many, many others, among which, my personal favourites were the Italian Seafood Chowder, the Shrimps Salad a la Napoli and the Lasagna al forno. And the desserts where on an entirely different league of their own! There was a Gelateria corner, with three different flavours of the most luscious ice-cream that literally melted in your mouth, as well as incredible variations of Tiramisu, Sicilian Cake, Chocolate Mousse, Italian Fruit Cake, etc.

Another addition to the amazing experience that was the food festival was the presence of the award-winning Barista 'Lina', a graduate of the Sydney Coffee Academy in Australia, who had been especially flown in by Radisson to give their guests the complete Italian experience!

When it comes to acquiring a fine dining experience, amidst ultimate luxury and sophistication, Radisson Water Garden Hotel Dhaka, takes the cake, with their continuous endeavours in providing something new. So for all those in search of great food, be sure to keep a look out for Radisson's next venture!

By Farina Noireet

Pizza around the corner

The third and latest “Pizza Corner” branch opened in Etcetera's Dhanmondi outlet on October 24. “Coffee World” had already been a part of Etcetera on Dhanmondi Road# 27; “Pizza Corner” joins it to form a combo store similar to the ones in Banani Road #11 and Dhanmondi Shaat Masjid Road.

Syeda Madiha Murshed, Deputy Managing Director of Ascent Group and Shoma Zahid, the Executive Director of Etcetera Bangladesh (Pvt.) Limited inaugurated the latest outlet of the popular chain. The inauguration was followed by a tasting session, with guests getting a flavour of the delights on offer.

The outlet, bedecked with balloons to mark the special occasion, seems to have lived up to the standards it has set with its previous branches. The seating is comfortable and the ambience light, enabling customers to have a good time with friends and family while having a tasty snack or meal. It is also the largest “Coffee World” and “Pizza Corner” combo outlet in the city in terms of capacity, capable of seating 83 customers.

Syed Ghulam Moinuddin, the deputy manager of the store had some good news for pizza lovers in the city, “We will soon be introducing delivery services. The delivery service will be provided from all Pizza Corner and Coffee World outlets, and we will brief the press when the service will commence.”

Among the hustle, bustle and animated chatter, waiters served all the guests with generous helpings of beef pepperoni and super combo pizzas with side orders of potato wedges. If demands for second helpings are anything to go by, the food was delicious.


Budget Smart

Designer watches pour homme

Zane Rahman has just completed his first year as an entrepreneur in his family business and is planning to gift his dad an exclusive watch, just to thank him for all the time he invested to make sure his son survives the tough world of business. His budget- flexible.

Zane can check out the showrooms at Bashundhara City, and Iqbal Centre in Gulshan. One of the most popular brands is Rado. Prices range from Tk 34,000 to Tk 2,75,000 and may be beyond his budget. He can opt to buy one of Rado's two-tone watches (incorporating two colours, typically silver and golden). This range of formal watches starts from Tk 34,000. Rado boasts its use of unconventional materials on their products- many of the wristwatches that are priced over 1 lakh are made of ceramic, which prevents the watch to develop scratch.

Tissot has been the official time-keeper of many racing championships. It manufactures formal as well as casual wristwatches. One particular category, called T-touch, has attained wide popularity because of its unique 'touch screen' dial. The watch incorporates several functions…a cool product for gadget lovers! The price ranges between 35,000 to 71,000.

Zane will be able to afford many wristwatches of Seiko. One of the most expensive ones is priced at Tk 45,000. He could ask for a Seiko Five, which has been quite popular these days.

There are many other brands in the market Zane can afford, like Pierre Cardin and Titoni. But perhaps Omega is the most celebrated. Businesspeople like his father would love the models from Omega's Constellation; prices start from Tk 150,000 and then go up wildly high. Meanwhile, on the sporty side there is the Speedmaster series, the so-called 'Moonwatch', as this was the first wristwatch to be worn on the moon. Its price varies between Tk 250,000 to 5 lakh. Finally, Omega's immensely popular Seamaster series- the official James Bond watch, which costs between Tk 140,000 and Tk 400,000 depending on the particular model you buy.

By M H Haider

On The Cover

With independent housing almost extinct now, greenery has become that much rarer in Dhaka nowadays. March on to the centrefold for our story on gardening
Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed

The Old River

London is not only a cosmopolis, but also considered as one of the most romantic cities in the world. The hustle bustle of Londoners, and the beautiful Thames- the lower portions of which flows by the city- creates a unique, picturesque setting that adds to the glamour of life in London.

Like the Thames, Seine blesses Paris, the French capital. And then there is the blue Danube, blessing the East European metropolises. True, it would be inane to attempt to gather a common link but the fact that all these cities have been gifted with an adjacent, flowing river cannot be undermined. The hustle bustle of city life coupled with the beauty of the flowing rivers, add to the grandeur of these cities.

Dhaka too, is blessed with a flowing river, the Buriganga. But unlike the blue Danube, the muddy waters from the off shoot of the mighty Ganges, fails to add majesty to Dhaka. It speaks volumes for the failure of the city planners, who fell short to reap the beauty of nature and incorporate it deep into our urban lifestyle.

Dhaka is hardly considered to be a romantic city. It lacks a picturesque setting, devoid of characteristics that add romance to city life. However, in the recent past, during the last SAARC summit, the city planners succeeded in making us think twice. Dhaka stirred up in all its splendour, which gave us a hint on what a little effort can yield.

The Buriganga reflects the soul of Dhaka. It is a hubbub of commerce and people travelling to distant corners of the riverine country and this itself presents a fascinating aspect of the river. What is urban beauty devoid of fast paced life? Buriganga can present this wonderful blend of culture meeting hand in hand with picturesque settings, the beauty of the river.

Recent developments in the conservation of architectural landmarks of city are sure to yield positive results in the coming future. In lieu, we must also explore the potential of the Old Ganges (Buriganga).

The polluted waters and years of plundering by land encroachers have contributed to the loss of the river's former glory. But it is a part of the city; part of our lives. Not only those who make a living from it but also for those who seek beauty and splendour from this old river.

By Mannan Mashhur Zarif



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