Indienne - Chicago
When visiting Indienne, you can leave your preconceived notions of Indian cuisine at the door. Chef Sujan Sarkar takes Indian foodways to a new place, with a tasting menu, rare among restaurants serving food of the subcontinent.
Progressive Indian Fine Dining. That's how Indienne describes itself, adding that the restaurant "celebrates the joy of dining, harmoniously offering guests a path to experience who we are through a provocative-yet-refreshingly-accessible tasting-menu, and seasonal a la carte fare in a convivial setting to be shared with you and your companions."
Chef Sujan Sarkar also offers vegetarian and, with forty-eight hours notice, a fully vegan menu. Many diners, however, opt for the tasting menu, which features such creative and delicious dishes as Egg (Curry), which features a perfectly poached egg swimming in a broth of sweet corn and peas, covered with a latticework of delicately fried millet noodles. Yogurt (Chat) is a small cake of crispy potato and a number of different chutneys, which points to a key difference between the food at Indienne and the food at most other Indian restaurants. Unlike the stews and hot dish items we find on innumerable Indian buffets, the dishes at Indienne are each carefully executed and plated with a fine dining attention to detail; the Yogurt (Chat), for instance, has multiple flavors coming from a variety of different chutneys. Similarly, the Lamb (Burrah), is served on a plate splashed with a spectrum of different colored and flavored sauces. There is a wine pairing available with the tasting menu, and it is highly recommended; there's also a full bar, but to bring out the unique flavors of Sarkar's food, there is nothing like wine.
On a recent dinner at Indienne, the food was so involving, it was almost difficult to carry on dinner table conversation. This is fantastically flavorful and carefully presented food that will gift you with a memorable dining experience.