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Monday, March 19, 2018

Chola @CholaNYC by Hemant Mathur Inaugural Review Our Coverage Sponsored by Fresh Origins @microgreens

Meet Murgh Chop, Hemant's favorite and Highly Recommended by Peachy!
You need Mulligatawny Soup on a cold day!

Fresh Origins is America’s leading producer of Microgreens and Edible Flowers. Combining the benefits of an ideal climate with a deep passion for quality and innovation, Fresh Origins products are sought after by the finest restaurants and top chefs. The farm is located in the picturesque rolling hills of San Diego County, where the near perfect weather allows for production and harvest all year. Fresh Origins produces almost 400 Microgreens, Petitegreens, Edible Flowers, Shoots, Tiny Veggies™ and related items. Many are not available anywhere else, with new introductions nearly every month. Fresh Origins products are on top of the finest cuisine in the world! Fresh Origins supplies distributors of specialty produce who serve fine dining restaurants and resorts nationwide. There are also a few online sources of their products available to private chefs and home cooks. Read our first Culinary Queen interview with Kelly Sasuga: 

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It's not who you know, it's WHOM YOU KNOW.
English matters!
When something is fabulous and evocative of substance as well as style, it is always only because of the person behind it.  Regardless of how much money any brand throws at a PR firm or the latest marketing fad, blogger, influencer or creator, it is bound to crash and burn if the person running the show does not personally care about interacting with the world directly and showing the world exactly how they are pursuing excellence.  It is also helpful if that person conveys that to those that write well, an enduring skill.
For more on this philosophy, we suggest Principles by Ray Dalio because we completely agreed with all of it before we knew who he was.  No one has ever made more sense.
Chola is great because Hemant Mathur has earned our accolades through his vocation as Chef/Owner.  We first met him years ago when we reviewed Tulsi, and recently in 2017, he earned a spot in Peachy's Picks with Sahib:
and Choate Nawab was initially featured:
Hemant owns all three along with business partners.  He may own more that you may read about in future posts!~!
We were recently impressed with an event at the A&D building, so if you are there, at Bloomingdale's or anywhere in the vicinity of Mover and Shaker Ed Koch's bridge, you can count on a great experience at Chola.  It is gorgeous.
We began with the Sarson Da Saag: Fresh Spinach and Mustard Greens and Ghee.
Don't let the murky color put you off; it is incredibly enticing at first bite with its fragrant and comforting delicious flavor and it is even healthy.  When was the last time your spinach was this glamorous in silver?  The smooth consistency also won us over and you know Peachy likes to eat every shade of green because she personally believes that every day is St. Patrick's Day.
See, we marched this year!
You know that March is totally not going out like a lamb and you're probably wearing five layers outside today.  To that end, meet Mulligatawny Soup.   When we see Mull, we think Mullingar.  This has expanded our horizons...the bright lentil coconut soup is something we never would have thought we'd like or a combination that would work, but it is a highly successful combination, and the lime accent is lovely also.
Meet Murgh Chop.  After nine years of doing this, we find chicken rather boring.
Hemant's chicken is NEVER boring.
The sublime flavor of roasted bone-in chicken with a creamy marinade & malt vinegar will make your day, and is further highlighted by both mint sauce and tamarind sauce.  This is Hemant's favorite menu item.
If you've been reading the Hemant Hit Parade on Whom You Know, you know that this dish is looking like Peachy's favorite, but let's look inside to know for sure.
Drumroll please, yes!  It is Chicken Biryani!  Find it under Mughlai Biryani.  Maybe someday we will venture out to the other Biryani choices but we are loyal to the Chicken.  You could also opt for Veg/paneer, Lamb, Shrimp and Bone-in Goat.  Shrimp sounds amazing and we will have to try that next.  Maybe Lobster another time?
Like cutting open a present:
Meet the visually stunning Konju Pappas!
Rich, bold, fiery flavor awaits you in an elegant silver presentation.  Kerala style shrimp with kokum infused coconut milk is superlative.  Chola has been open since 1998 and in 2014, Hemant Mathur took over with his four partners in the Fine Dining Group.  Chola means estate; emperors lived there in Southern India.  
Chola's menu covers all areas of Indian cuisine, not a certain region.
If you are new to Indian food, you should know a standard is Chicken Tikka Masala, which is the first and only thing Peachy ate from Indian restaurants for a long time.  Hemant has mastered this traditional dish with creamy tomato sauce and fenugreek, and the Chola rendition is one of the best. If you like tomato sauce in anything Italian or on pizza, imagine that with cream added.  Cream makes most food better!
We have always loved Garlic Naan and you may have seen Peachy refer to herself as a Garlic Naan Monster (a la our inspiration, Cookie Monster).  The Garlic Naan is indeed a knockout at Chola, and you should also try the Jalapeno Cheese Naan that is peppered with sliced jalapeno peppers!  Incredible.
Chola impressed us on our first visit and we look forward to our friend Hemant's next hit!

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