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Eat: Photoessay

By Christine Pemberton

The expression “Renaissance man” conjures up an image of someone from the Middle Ages, doesn’t it? A man schooled in Latin and science and the arts, able to speak many languages - that kind of thing.

But yet it is this rather old-fashioned expression that comes to mind, when you meet Chef Michael Swamy, the creative & culinary force behind the innovative Delhi restaurant “Nueva”.

Chef Michael is a writer, a talented photographer, a stylist…oh yes, and one of India’s top chefs, with many awards to his name.

Photo credit Sudip Bhattacharya

Date Published: 1st September 2017

Earth Salad - Nueva, Delhi

Nueva is - forgive the pun - not only a brand new restaurant in south Delhi, it also brings to the city a fascinating nueva cuisine, the cuisine of South America.
To quote Chef, “At Nueva we take you on a journey of nature. A journey of Sea, Land, Mountains and Air.”

Butter Poached Black Cod - Nueva Delhi

South American cuisine is largely unknown in India, but Chef Michael and his staff aim to popularize and educate people about a little-known culinary tradition. Menus are kept small, but are regularly updated, as Chef constantly researches new dishes from new countries. With a love of history, Michael aims to incorporate food traditions and traditional food alongside new creations, as he fashions a gastronomical tour through the food of Chile, Peru, Argentina, to name just 3 of the countries whose food has featured in the opening weeks of Nueva.

Earth Salad - Nueva, Delhi

Chef Michael is a passionate food stylist, and so each and every dish that emerges from the kitchen is a visual statement, as well as delicious. Like this earth salad which has the stars, the planets, the sun, the moon…all on one elegant plate.

Ceviche - Nueva, Delhi

In Chef’s own words, in Nueva, “the list of ingredients varies from fresh fruits to meats to fish to foods from the mountains”
Some dishes are familiar, such as Ceviche, though this one comes with a kiwi twist.

NUEVA by Michael Swamy

With a huge state of the art kitchen, and a large glass wall to allow diners to share the culinary experience, Nueva encourages you not only to watch what is going on, but also enquire about dishes and produce that you might not be familiar with.

New Dishes at Nueva, Delhi

Chef Michael again: “Nueva is a typical south American fine-dining restaurant where food pairs with art and philosophy.”

Quinoa Putting two ways at Nueva Delhi

In just a few weeks, there are already several “signature” dishes, such as Quinoa Pudding. With a swirl of colours and tastes, this pudding stars two kinds of quinoa, cooked with saffron and chocolate, then topped with ginger-flavoured dulce de leche.

New dishes at Nueva, Delhi

In keeping with the latino vibe at Nueva, there are “tapas”.

New Dishes at Nueva Delhi

Fine dining is not at all about taking yourself too seriously. Take this fabulous fun dish, for example. Called the Paintbox, it encourages you to play with your food.No, truly it does.
Take that stick of lemongrass, choose one of the pots of lemon or berry and daub away to your heart’s content. You can decorate the biscuits, or, if you want a bigger canvas, the staff will happily give you a plate, so you can “paint”. Edible art has never been so stylish.





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