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Drake Hotel Chefs Embark On Innovative Indian Initiative
June 14, 2011
CHICAGO - The Drake Hotel Executive Chef Baasim Zafar and Executive Sous Chef Jonathan Wainwright will complete an overseas trip to explore the newest trends in Indian cuisine in an effort to enhance The Drake Hotel’s already brilliant reputation as host to the finest traditional Indian weddings in Chicago.
A leader in this market, The Drake Hotel strives to provide the most authentic cuisine, taking extraordinary measures to do so. Executive Chef Baasim Zafar conceptualized and proposed this initiative of cultural immersion to refine The Drake’s repertoire of cuisine and ensure The Drake Hotel’s prominence as the hotel market leader for Indian events.
“The Drake is fortunate to have an Executive Chef with the depth of culinary expertise that Zafar possesses,“ The Drake Hotel General Manager Russell Menkes, remarked. “The experiences both Chefs will gain on this adventure to augment the authenticity of The Drake’s Indian Cuisine is an extraordinary step in our mission to continue to lead and innovate.”
The Drake Hotel will be the first hotel in Chicago to prepare authentic in-house Indian cuisine for social events; yet another milestone in the storied history of The Drake Hotel.
Chef Zafar and Chef Wainwright will complete an 18-day trip spanning more than 18,500 miles, from Chicago to London to five cities throughout India, on a mission to discover new recipes and master techniques from some of the best Indian chefs and caterers in the world.
Chef Zafar and Chef Wainright’s itinerary includes a visit to Bukhara, the most renowned and decorated Indian restaurant in that region and named one of the top 50 restaurants in the world. Along their route they will also pay homage to Zafar’s ancestral home, Lucknow, the capital city of the Uttar Pradesh providence. There they will visit two orphanages and prepare traditional Hindu and Muslim Indian meals for the children.
While the Chefs are abroad The Drake Hotel plans to install traditional Tandori ovens to ensure all cuisine is prepared authentically. Utilizing this new equipment and the knowledge they acquire in the UK and India, the culinary team led by Chef Zafar will develop a full menu to reflect all facets of regional Indian cuisine.
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