Experience Alba The Marou Way

Experience Alba The Marou Way

Review

The culinary essence of Alba, the Italian restaurant at JW Marriott, Bengaluru, is authentic Italian cuisine with a strong creative element. Head Chef Marouane Rahali has created a menu that features exceptional Italian cuisine based on Italian culinary traditions revisited through personal interpretation and remarkable creativity, with twists on flavour combinations, utilizing top quality Italian produce, as well as locally sourced ingredients. Open daily for lunch and dinner, Alba’s Italian marble interiors from Carrara, as well as the grandiose chandeliers and alfresco seating {for those who would like to dine under the night sky studded with stars} creates a seductively luxe dine space to set the mood; making it amply evident that you are in for a visual treat in addition to a culinary one!

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{The amphitheatre-style dining area with a show kitchen in the center displaying fresh produce, a selection of the finest Prosecco, bread, cheese, equipment and more.}

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{Alba’s decor is simple yet sophisticated, minimalistic yet exquisite. It is the impeccable example of the Italian culinary motto ‘less is more’.}

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Chef Marou’s new Italian menu brings together a fine selection of signature specialties from Italy, and seduces with just the right textures and flavours. Numerous ingredients that go into the breads & sauces are handcrafted giving the food a home-made, fresh and earthy feel. The music, drinks and food will promptly induce you to relinquish all troubles and unwind over conversation.

 

The Menu I was invited to sample

Antipasti

Burrata

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Fresh Creamy Buffalo Mozzarella, Heirloom Tomatoes with Basil and Wildflower Honey. Fresh mozzarella is best enjoyed fresh, so you can truly appreciate its delightful texture and flavour. And mozzarella, as legions of summer salad lovers will tell you, is best paired with tomatoes, fresh basil and a drizzle of olive oil; served with some crusty olive bread. Great Italian antipasti, with mozzarella that tasted as rich as butter with the understated sweetness of full-fat milk. Absolutely perfect!

Note: Regardless of the milk source, mozzarellas are typically prepared with four basic ingredients: milk, salt, vinegar & enzymes/rennet. The difference between cheeses comes principally from the quality & fat content of the milk. Higher fat usually results in better texture & flavour.

Insalata di Rucola

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Baby Rocket {Arugula}, Parmesan, Tomato, Roasted Asparagus, Roasted Pine Nuts and Aged Balsamic Dressing.

A fresh, light salad that is not only delicious and nutritious, but also beautiful! A harmony of flavours and colours combined with lots of wellness! Loved the roasted pine nuts, especially since the crunch factor is such an integral part of this salad. Works great with Pizza or Pasta.

 

Zuppe

Veluta di Pollo e Funghi

Chicken and Mushroom Velouté with Truffle essence.

If you love insanely warm colours and all the goodness of autumn, then this delicious autumn soup, prepared with “velvety” porcini mushrooms and breast of chicken bathed in a delicate cream with truffle essence – is real comfort food. A soup with exotic flavours, fantastic when made with fresh, seasonal mushrooms, but also excellent with dried mushrooms.

 

Pasta e Risotto

Triangolini di Pollo

Chicken Ravioli with Mushroom Creamy Sauce.

This flavourful ravioli garnished with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese and leaves of fresh sage, comes together beautifully with a creamy béchamel style sauce that complements the roasted mushrooms perfectly. This dish was absolutely amazing, really tasty! My love for ravioli remains. The flavours that were presented with the mushroom were a feast in the mouth!

Spaghetti Affumicati

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Red Fresh Spaghetti Tossed with Tomato, Vegetables and Smoke Ricotta Sauce.

Even though the setting for pasta dishes is chiefly turned to classic, there are times when things gravitate towards the experimental. In its original form Spaghetti Affumicati was just that: smoked pasta tossed with clams, tomato, chilli and garlic. But an issue with the smoky flavour being lost to the boiling process has resulted in a more conventional modification. The tomatoes are now smoked rather than the pasta, resulting in the smoke flavour being more pronounced. Perhaps it is in the nature of pasta to resist too much fiddling with.

Chef Marou revisited this classic dish with a touch of modernity & creativity – spaghetti drenched in a briny broth with just a hint of ripe tomatoes, smoky ricotta sauce {the smoky flavour that recalls the palate – and memory – the grills of village festivals} and coarsely chopped parsley; pasta to gratify your carb craving, whilst still being perfectly al dente. Empirically and absolutely craftsman, smoking pasta!

 

Pesce

Gamberoni

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Grilled Jumbo Prawns, Green Lentil and Citrus Sauce.

Contemporary, fresh and decadent. King prawns flambéed in white wine, butter, fresh garlic, basil and tomato, served with Indian green lentil. The prawns were cooked to perfection – juicy prawns will never go out of fashion. The green lentils added a delightful tanginess which balanced the dish well, and I thought the resulting combination of flavours was rather great.

 

Pizza

Classic Margherita Pizza

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Mozzarella, tomato and basil. Fresh and delicious… What’s not to love!

 

Dolci

Tortino al Cioccolato

Dark chocolate Flan with Home-made Pistachio Ice-cream.

An attractively presented Dark Chocolate Flan tilted into cloying sweetness, served up with a scoop of delicious home-made Pistachio ice-cream. A godduria of the senses!

By the end of this feast, which had begun with selections of cheese and bread topped with extra virgin olive oil, my belly was tightly distended and I consoled myself with redemptive visions of punishing exercise.

Chef Marou’s charismatic personality, sense of humour, easy nature and undoubtedly the food, made the evening really special.

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Tanya Dhar with Chef Marou

 

Stop by to indulge in a gourmet meal, or request the sommelier for a curated selection of Prosecco, or simply to enjoy a glass of wine or a cocktail or two… but the real stars of this restaurant are the very welcoming and charming staff who are unfailingly polite and friendly, and they each clearly enjoy providing great service as a well oiled team. A live Chef’s station and an exotic Sangria bar with some foot-tapping melodies by the live Jazz band, make this Italian experience the perfect way to unwind. Buon Appetito!

Address: JW Marriott, 24/1, Vittal Mallya Road, Lavelle Road, Bangalore
For reservations please call 080 67188533

 

*Disclaimer: This review was done on an invitation from the restaurant. Due judgement and care has been applied by the author to remain objective and unbiased in the review.

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* I love bringing together a bunch of conflicting items and weaving my own sense of one-ness to them. *

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