Mumbai Diary: Sunday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Do you smell that too?
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis's wife Amruta seems to be scrunching up her nose at something during an award function in Lower Parel on Saturday. Pic/Bipin Kokate
Samir Gadhok and Avani Raheja
Gallerist Geetu Hinduja's daughter Avani Raheja and her husband Samir Gadhok are set to open their first homegrown gourmet food store named Provenance at a Lower Parel mall. It turns out, the couple spent a good six years conceptualising the store which also includes a 17-seater café. "While on our travels, Avani and I would often stumble upon beautiful products that we would have loved to introduce in India. However, there was no place here to showcase small-batch, heritage and boutique brands, either local or foreign, in a respectful and compelling way. With Provenance, we hope to tell their stories," said Gadhok.
Chef Anuroopa Banerjee Gupta
Raza on a plate
That the late Modernist SH Raza was inspirational is hardly a debate, but that he could inspire a dégustation dinner is noteworthy. Chef Anuroopa Banerjee Gupta prepared an eight-course dinner for select guests as part of the opening of a major retrospective on Raza at the Piramal Museum of Art. Banerjee Gupta, who is originally from Jaipur, turned to her culinary instincts after working with corporate communications. The 39-year-old has been travelling to Italy and has had a stint with Gaggan in Bangkok as part of her training. For the Raza-inspired dinner, the chef traced the artist's journey, in keeping with the exhibition's title, Traversing Terrains, right from his French years to the return to his Indian roots. Primary colours, geometric shapes and humble ingredients were part of this dinner, such as a classic cold soup with cherries and a falafel course. We do love it when we find artistry across mediums.
Nothing like a 'nice' bottle of wine from the boss' cellar
Bill Lawry, the Australia cricket captain-turned-commentator received a car from his employers Channel Nine when he turned 80 last year. Fellow commentator and mid-day columnist Ian Chappell then expressed a view on the gift he would like to receive for serving the network. No, he didn't want a car, only a "nice" bottle of wine. The other day, Channel Nine decided to reward Chappell for his services which have spanned across four decades. Chappell, it can be recalled, took to the microphone even when he was part of Kerry Packer's World Series Cricket as a player. In the commentary box he had Lawry, Tony Cozier and English fast bowling great Fred Trueman for company.
During this week's ceremony, Nine's CEO Hugh Marks surprised Chappell with a wine bottle which was part of the late Packer's personal collection - Penfolds Grange Hermitage - wrapped in a case which adorned a huge World Series Cricket logo. Chappell loves his wine and this diarist remembers visiting his departed mother Jeanne's retirement home in Adelaide during the 2003-04 Australian summer and spotting an Ian Chappell-labelled wine bottle high up on her wall unit.
Surprise for Maya
This week, writer Kiran Manral wasn't just celebrating her birthday, but also the unexpected success of her recent release. Manral's Saving Maya, published earlier in January by up and coming indie publishing house, Bombaykala Books - started by a group of 19-year-olds last year - won her a mention in the longlist of Saboteur Awards 2018 in the best novella category. She is the only Indian writer to have made it in the category. "It was a complete surprise to see my novella, Saving Maya, long-listed for the Saboteur Awards 2018. I chanced upon it rather late after all the shortlisting and winning had been done. I was delighted nonetheless, and very, very honoured because these awards are supported by the Arts Council England and their aim is to provide dynamic commentary and reviews of small-scale and ephemeral literature that might not otherwise receive such critical and public attention. Saving Maya is a book that is light-hearted on the surface of it, but an intensely layered a commentary on modern marriages, women in urban India and more. I'm delighted it was seen as such," the author told this diarist.
Shirley goes international
Unless you have been living under a rock, you have to have heard of music producer Marshmello, who has collaborated with many pop stars including Zedd and Selene Gomez. Joining that list of collaborators is YouTube star Shirley Setia. Setia, who is right now stationed in Las Vegas, met the hottest name in dance music while both were staying at the same hotel. "My manager Aayushman Sinha reached out to music mogul, Moe Shalizi, to see if they'd be up for a quick meeting since we were both in the same hotel," she said. The chance meeting led to Marshemello making a video with Setia where both of them are dancing on Kala Chashma, which he later posted on Instagram, saying "Bollywood here we come". "The video was an impromptu idea since I realised he's such a big fan of Bollywood culture, music and dance. I am looking forward to working with him in the future," Setia told this diarist. Best of luck!
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