KANTO MATSURI : FESTIVAL OF LANTERNS

It is almost thirty years since I first traveled to Japan.

Had never heard of Sushi  , let alone any other Japanese food type.

How the world has changed, Japanese restaurants have mushroomed in my hometown of New Delhi. Sushi has become a mainstay of all buffets in  fancy hotels  and a must like for all  socialites ( read Page 3) . I have even seen Sushi bars in the malls. Is the day far when they are available along with momos at every street cafe ?

Now in Sakura, New Delhi  celebrating “Kanto Matsuri” , the pole lantern festival .

entrance
                            entrance

The  Red Lanterns and colour red seem to be the main theme of this restaurant serving Japanese cuisine, located on the first floor  within the Metropolitan Hotel  , New Delhi.

seating inside
seating inside

A well stocked bar with the sea food prominently displayed on the counter.

We were however the ‘only foreigners’ in this restaurant, all the tables were occupied by Japanese guests.

the bar
the bar

An introduction to the festival of lanterns and the menu( by the talented chefs ) for the evening  was placed on every table.

lantern festival
              pole lantern festival

A unique feature in many parts of the Far East including Japan is  the display of “faux food”. Thus  only for looking, not eating .

decorative food
                               decorative food

Sea Food is a cornerstone  of Japanese cuisine . The various types are displayed in the  restaurant .

octopus
                       octopus( centre) 

salmon ( peach coloured) is on the extreme right.

sea food

The vegetarian and non vegetarian menus.I kept a careful watch so as not to miss a course.

veg menu

Non Veg menu
                  Non Veg menu

I love Edamame beans.The tofu ( extreme left)  was super soft and simply melted away in the mouth. Japanese momos ( Yaki Gyoza) are in the centre.

edame beans momos
            edamame beans and  momos

Can any food be complete without drinks ? Beer seemed to very popular amongst all the guests.

mixologist not mysoginist
              mixologist not misogynist

The sauce with the salad was fantastic.

salad
                                        salad

Sushi has become the chic food now.

sushi in progress
             sushi in progress

The Miso soup was a surprise  add-on by the chef . It was not listed on the printed menu.

Japanese cuisine is always aesthetically presented and looks like a piece of art.

miso soup plus sushi
                miso soup plus sushi

The tempura.( similar to  the Indian pakoras)  Did the faux tempura look better? Please do comment.

tempura
                               Yasai Tempura

Hot noodle soup or Shoyu Ramen.

final course of noodles
                   final course : noodle soup  

I was ready to burst. Skipped the ice cream and the tea as well.But you can have it.

Sayonara. Leave you with more of the colour Red.( picture is straight off the camera, no filters, no editing)

More lanterns
                More lanterns
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CLONES : A VILLAGE AND A LUXURY RESORT

ECO FRIENDLY VILLAGE BECOMES THE MUSE OF A HIGH ENDED LUXURY SAFARI LODGE

Rub your eyes, its the village
Rub your eyes, its the village

This article is Chapter 4 in my series titled: BANDAVGARH: LUXURY, A VILLAGE and THE TROPIC OF CANCER. If you read them in sequence your pleasure and understanding  will be enhanced.

Mardari ( i hope i spelt is right) is the tiniest but sweetest of villages located on the fringes of the Bandavgarh Tiger Reserve.

Cottages with terracotta tiles
Cottages with terracotta tiles

While it has many unique features two are closest to my heart. It’s an ECO FRIENDLY ORGANIC VILLAGE. As you see the pictures you will see the extensive use of natural materials in the construction of each houses. The result is the harmonious coexistence of man and nature.

Bee Eater ( can you spot them) and mustard fields
GreenBee Eaters ( can you spot them) , Machan and mustard fields

Hope the zoom in helps.

Bee Eaters  (Merops orientalis )
Bee Eaters
(Merops orientalis )

Can anyone identify this tiger striped insect? Is it food for the bee eaters?

An insect and the bud of the hibiscus
An insect and the bud of the hibiscus

The second aspect is the absence of garbage  . No plastic bottles and plastic bags .

Look at the lovely bullock cart , construction is unique to the region.

The Main Boulevard of Mardari Village
The  clean Main Boulevard of Mardari Village

The village and its architecture have been brilliantly cloned  at the  luxurious Samode Safari Lodge. The pictures will help you see the similarities in the detailing.

Cottage suite?
Cottage suite?
The watering hole
The watering hole
outdoor bath
outdoor bath

There are some features however which can be found only at the VILLAGE MARDARI.

The cow sheds
The cow sheds
happy lady of the house
happy lady of the house
A goat in the porch of the school
A goat in the porch of the school
 school girls
school girls

The name of the shop, Village name and timings of this shop are mentioned on the wall in blue on the left .

Grocery shop
Grocery shop

The last but not least is this cow with quite a character.

Very inquisitive as it why its being photogarphed
Very inquisitive as to why its being photogarphed

Hope you enjoyed reading, as i had  a  blast typing , the last in the series will be an article on the BANDAVGARH TIGER RESERVE for which you need check out :http://www.enchantedforests.wordpress.com