Aamir's weighty matters

Aamir Khan is finally back in town, after a hectic month-long outdoor schedule, for his upcoming wrestling biopic Dangal, which according to sources, has been one of the most challenging projects he’s been involved with.

The actor, who had to put on a lot of weight for the film in order to play the role of an older, heavier man, has completed the last bit of shooting in Pune, Ludhiana and Delhi, and now has a couple of months to lose all the weight, and get into shape again to reprise the role of a 20-year-old for the same film.

Aamir Khan in Ghajini
Aamir Khan in Ghajini

Towards this goal, the actor has planned to take off to a small town in the USA, with his personal trainer Rahul Bhatt, and begin his rigorous regime. As one concerned industry source added, “Don’t know why he constantly puts himself under so much health risk. Yes, he did it for Ghajini but that was almost a decade ago!”

Aamir KhanAamir Khan

Hrithik the art patron
Photographer Rohan Shrestha’s recent projection photo exhibition, Hanami, that was curated by Ambika Hinduja Macker, has received the ultimate accolade of these times: Bollywood attention. The opening evening last Saturday saw Bollywood folks turn out in large numbers to support the lensman – son of Bollywood photographer Rakesh Shrestha.

Hrithik RoshanHrithik Roshan

Spotted at the opening were the likes of Ranveer Singh, Shahid Kapoor, Arjun Kapoor and Sonakshi Sinha. And yesterday a source called in to inform us that Hrithik Roshan, a friend of Shrestha’s, was so impressed by the young lensman’s work that he purchased two of the art installations for his home.

Back to the future
The more things change the more they stay the same. And so, when news of the re-launch of the Tahiliani sibling’s flagship store, Ensemble this evening, reached us we couldn’t help think back to the time when it had all begun.

Tarun Tahiliani, Sunita Kapoor, Zandra Rhodes. Pic/AFP
Tarun Tahiliani, Sunita Kapoor, Zandra Rhodes. Pic/AFP

It was the late ’80s and there was no fashion industry to speak of in those days. Tarun Tahiliani, the Doon school educated son of a highly regarded Admiral, newly back from Wharton, got the ball rolling. Urrshila Kerkar daughter of Ajit and Liz Kerkar, icons of the Taj was involved in its conceptualizing.

At a preview, we recall meeting the likes of the late Rohit Khosla, and a very young Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla, whose Jashan label swept us off our feet. Ensemble also boasted clothes by Sunita Anil Kapoor and saris by Zandra Rhodes.

And the fact that its launch was heralded by a swish party thrown by Sunita Pitamber at the Piano Bar, that boasted the attendance of not one but three international style icons (Princesses Ira and Esra and Shakira Caine), made every thing even more exciting.

The iconic store that set so many standards we hear, has gone in for a completely new look, has been re-designed and will open its doors for a private viewing for the who’s who of the city. Will it be the shape of things to come? Most likely.

Some much-needed comfort food
The new owners of Indigo Deli will be launching a new concept this evening called ‘Comfort Kitchen.’ “It will be a monthly recurring chef’s table, with food created specially for the table by group head Chef Jaydeep Mukherjee,” said a spokesperson.

Chef Jaydeep MukherjeeChef Jaydeep Mukherjee

“The menu will consist of seven courses that have been inspired from the most popular comfort food dishes served at the deli over the last decade as ‘Indigo Deli Revisited and Reinterpreted’. The first installment of this will take place tonight for a table of 20 of the bistro’s regular patrons,” the spokesperson said.

What’s more, our foodie source informs us that under its new management, the restaurant chain is looking to open an Asian food-serving counterpart to its successful Indigo Deli franchise. The new offering will target the same market and offer affordable Asian cuisine.

Too many chefs
It’s the season of celeb chefs obviously. With both Floyd Cardoz of the Bombay Canteen (who is in town for the Canteen’s anniversary celebrations last night) and Michelin starred Indian chef Vikas Khanna making high profile visits to the city, the other Michelin starred celebrity chef, Francesco Apreda’s presence passed almost under the radar.

Chef Francesco Apreda
Chef Francesco Apreda

The famed Italian chef who cooks at the Hassler in Rome, is a consultant with the Oberoi group on Italian cuisine, and spent a week each in the two Oberoi’s Italian eateries, first New Delhi’s Travertino and more recently at the Vetro in Mumbai. And though we weren’t fortunate enough to try his food we heard, alas, from someone, who did say, “He had carried a significant stock of black truffles with him”. Damn.

Plane talk
The things you pick up on the Delhi-Mumbai red eye. We happened to eavesdrop on this exchange concerning the recent murky murder and cover-up case that had captured the country’s attention rapidly (and appears to be forgotten as rapidly). We would not have paid much attention if the two men discussing the matter were not such insiders and personal friends of the accused.

“She’s gone totally grey,” said one. “Husband and wife are on totally different sides now,” said the other. “He wants her to solely take the fall for this,” said the first. “He has told his lawyers that she arm-twisted him into everything, and forced him to put half his properties in her name,” said the other. “It doesn’t look good for her –wouldn’t be surprised if she’s given the ultimate punishment,” said the first. And all this before take off!

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