Cakes are an important part of our lives and we all love it, don’t we? But there’s more to these fluffy little chum cakes than meets the eye. It has evolved and become a symbol of celebration. Any celebration – birthdays or weddings or anniversaries – is incomplete without a cake. Any special day deserves a special cake and a few slices of cake can kindle countless smiles and beautiful memories for lifetime and make someone’s ordinary day special.
November 5, 2016 marked the milestone of the 1st Anniversary of the Crowne Plaza Hotel in the pink city and strengthened its endeavor to deliver inspiring and high valued services to it’s guests. On this beautiful day, The host Chandan Thakur extended invites to few Media associates, writers and bloggers to attend the celebration and I had the privilege to be amongst them.
Highlight of the day was the ceremonial cake cutting ritual featuring an extraordinary 66 ft long and 240 Kg Pastry. Yes, it was that huge and the biggest cake Jaipur has ever seen, prepared by Crowne Plaza chefs under Mr. Vikas’s (Head-Chef) supervision. Without a doubt, I have to say that the event was beautifully organized and eveyone seemed to love it.
The Mocktail Tasting Experience
Just after visiting the hotel, we were greeted by the manager Vivek Jain in the lobby! Vivek is a familiar face to me as we have already met few times before! Previous visit at Sirocco itself, and other at Paris Hilton, Jaipur, where he was the one who perfectly managed my cousin’s engagement ceremony.
After exchanging a few pleasantries, Vivek informed me of the mocktail tasting session, which had a wide range of alluring mocktails decorated on this long rack!
These beautiful elixirs piqued my interest immensely and was curious to know the recipe, Vivek helped me through it, but the one I really enjoyed and keen to know, was the “Orange smoked up” mocktail.
It looked beautiful and unique to me. Prepared by smoking tangy fruits and then blended together with perfectly flavoured fruit juice. The sip tasted of fruits fibers and pulp in tanginess of orange. I think that was a delighful surprise!!
While i was relishing the mocktails, I met Chandan Thakur, the director of Crowne Plaza! He appeared to be a smiling face with sophisiticated personality. We had our pleasantries and cards exchanged, and he asked us to step into the “House of Han” for our lunch session!
With so many personalities under the roof, Zomato bloggers (FoodiePanda, AkshyaDigitalDiaries, Yash Bhavani), Bloggers from Delhi 360DaysOfBliss and the media people and most importantly Mrs. Dharmendra Kanwar (1993-94 national award winner for best travel writer), I was feeling joyous being around the people who share the same interests as myself. Its inspiring to see people doing so much about blogging. For me, it started out quite unknowingly but later I realized I am really enjoying my interest.
The House of Han was the lunch host today and the experience was delightful. And by experience, it’s not just the food, the ambience and hospitality plays a huge role and it was all spot on.
House of Han, inspired by the Han dynasty (the second imperial dynasty of China), has a magnificent large Red Door like a traditional Chinese Hutong entrance and the logo just next to the doors, symbolizes the same concept.
The restaurant is decorated with elegant interiors, stylish artifacts, ornate windows and soothing dim lit classical chinese hanging hollow lamps, which take care of the mood and form the perfect essence of Chinese culture which also completely justify the authetic mongolian food in plate. The live kitchen at the end of the hall, displaying the action and culinary skills of chefs at work is interesting to watch! But quite a few know that there is also a Private Round Table Dining Room that accommodates around 10-12 guests, a valuable family time without any distraction.
HoH serves pure Chinese authentic Mongolian food which probably is the unique thing about it. They bring you the most famous trends of Mongolian Chinese cuisine and seafood prepared from exotic herbs and spices with exquisite refinement.
The food session started with eye catching long-spout teapot to serve Chinese Jasmine Tea. Although I had certainly low expectations with it, but it turned out to be one of the favourites of the evening. I allowed them to pour another cup for me.
The menu was divided into 4 courses, allowing us to sample a variety of Chinese delicacies as either a starter or a main dish with authentic recipes and ingredients.
Chinese Grill Mushroom (2/5)
I don’t like mushrooms. I don’t know why. I think it is mostly a texture thing, but more importantly the visual thing (a bit unpleasent). But I don’t really mind the taste and can handle small bits of mushrooms, so I feel there is hope for me yet! But the taste of it was passable, still not much impressing.
Silken Tofu and shittake in Chilli Pepper(2/5)
Although the tofus appeared to be gently pat and most of the liquid has been absorbed, the tofu recipe was not something that matches my taste palate. The spices didn’t make up for the bland taste from inside the tofu. So this dish wasn’t a pleaser for me either.
Crystal Corn Dumpling (5/5)
The dumpling introduced today were simple corn and cabbages stuffed. My previous experience with dumplings @MainlandChina was not very pleasant and had made me doubtful about my liking. But the dumplings here were adequately sized with thin slimy soft skin (slightly glazed), augemented with generously prepared stuffing. Surprisingly, the sheer twist of sauces when drizzled over, did complete justice to the dish, overall made it succulent and tasty. Yummy corns sweetness complimenting the rawness of cabbages, was very smooth and soothing! Without thinking much, instantly asked’em to serve some more on my small plate. 🙂
Kung Pao Lotus Stem(5/5)
Throughout my life, I had just tasted the tasteless and ugliest versions of it, and never thought lotus stems could taste so yummy! This avatar of lotus stem was totally new to me – crispy and crunchy, thinly-sliced coated with flavourful sauces and honey exploding in your mouth. Must say, the interplay of tanginess-sweetness was just perfect for my palate.
Aspharagus and Sweet Corn Soup(5/5)
Indo-Chinese Creamed style soup, which I think should have been served in the beginning instead serving it after few heavy starters. Anyways! The soup was boiling hot, thick and flaky cooked egg whites small lumps (not sure) mixed with corns and aspharagus pieces, was salty and veggies to chew a lil at last, overall delivered a satisfying taste. Definitely it was a fine delicacy!
Red Pepper wok fried noodles (3/5)
The typical Sino-spicy noodles covered with plethora of colurful veggies looked alluring without any furthur presentation. Who wouldn’t want thin, crispy noodles in a scrumptious soya sauce that makes you want to frolic through meadows.
I really enjoyed the thin and fresh scallions tossed with noodles! Scrumptious!
Mongolian Burnt Garlic Fried Rice and Stir Fried Chinese Greens (3/5)
It had generous helping of medium cut veggies mixed in green sapid curry. I used the sauce and veggies to eat with rice because I found rice slightly on the flat side, a little tinge of spice/tang would have definitely elevated the dish further for me.
Overall experience: 4/5
Personal favourites: Crystal Corn Dumpling and Kung Pao Lotus Stem
With authentic flavours, inspired cuisines, invigorated ambience and warm service, House of Han is known for its genuine culinary experiences. A gorgeous setting having flamboyant yet chic decor and traditional authentic mongolian food makes House of Han the perfect venue for the adventurous foodies. The staff was well trained & courteous and overall it was an exemplary experience.
Thank you Crowne Plaza team, for having me over. I had a whale of a time and moments to cherish!