Kolkata is known as a city of gastronomic pleasures. It was the only Indian city to feature in a recent list published by award-winning media platform Eater in 2023. The list, which highlights the world's best culinary destinations every year, included Albuquerque, Cambridge, Sardinia, Manila, Ho Chi Minh City, and Guatemala City. Kolkata has many eateries and culinary threads that make it a firm favourite with foodies. Of these, six made it to the inaugural ‘Ultimate Restaurant Ratings' recently launched by Culinary Culture.
Culinary Culture launched the ratings in the six cities of Kolkata, Mumbai, Delhi NCR, Bengaluru, Chennai, and Goa. This innovative star-rating system, the first of its kind in the country, rates establishments with three, four, or five stars. The Ultimate Restaurant Ratings evaluated restaurants using five criteria: taste, technique, presentation, service, and consistency.
The event, held on February 1 at The Leela in Mumbai, drew restaurateurs, chefs, hoteliers, and food enthusiasts from all around India.
Kolkata is a treasure trove for gastronomes from around the world. The restaurants in the list reflect the melting pot influences of various culinary cultures found in the city. The Kolkata winners included south Indian restaurant Avartana at ITC Royal Bengal and popular Bengali food restaurant 6 Ballygunge Place who earned four stars each. Others on the list were the legendary Royal Indian Hotel known for biryani and chaap, the hip and innovative Sienna Store & Cafe, Sonar Tori which serves traditional Bengali fare offered in an opulent ambience, and The Blue Poppy. They each received three stars.
The event also included a list highlighting the 'Local Favourites' for each city. From Kolkata, the ones to get featured were Mughlai food faves Aminia, Arsalan, and Islamia Hotel, the Chinese eating house Eau Chew, Kasturi which serves excellent Bangladeshi food, the iconic Mocambo set up in the 1950s, and Nizam's, said to be the inventor of the kathi kebab.
Future editions of Ultimate Restaurant Ratings will include more cities to span the length and breadth of India. Massimo Bottura, Italian restaurateur and the chef patron of Osteria Francescana, a three-Michelin-star restaurant based in Modena, Italy, will be visiting India again. Central Restaurante from Lima, Peru, which was named The World's Best Restaurant 2023 as well as The Best Restaurant in South America, at the awards ceremony for The World's 50 Best Restaurants 2023, will be showcasing their cuisine in India for the first time. Keep tabs on the Culinary Culture website for updates.