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Celebrating Johnnie Walker Double Black at The Taj West End


Disclaimer: Just a heads-up that this post is about alcoholic drinks. Not suitable for people below 25!

I was invited for a bespoke evening at The Taj West End, Bangalore to experience the flavours of the award winning Johnnie Walker Double Black Whisky. Here's a photo tour...

The Taj West End looked great from outside...


There were Turkeys roaming around...


Things were in place for a great evening...





The event was curated by Mr Zbignew Zapert ( Reserve Brand Ambassador, United Spirits) in collaboration with Mr Sandip Narang (Executive Chef, the Taj West End)...


Zbiginiew is a professional mixologist with years of experience in cocktail led venues throughout Europe. Zbi is a nice person to talk to. Before hitting the table, he explained all the finer aspects of whisky drinking...

Zbi made many cocktails with the said whisky. The first drink was Double Black Raisin Sour...


Here's the recipe...


Chef Sandip Narang created a number of dishes to pair with Johnnie Walker Double Black. Double Raisin sour was paired with cheese and pickle with grape reduction...


By the time I finished the first drink, Zbi was crowning the second cocktail with Green Apple Foam... 


A martini glass filled with Double Black  Oaky Apple cocktail...


Here's the recipe...


Double Black Oaky Apple was paired with Prosciutto and Salami with Horseradish Aioli...


The third cocktail was Double Black and Berry with a splash of ginger ale...


Here's the recipe...


Double Black and Berry was paired with Lamb chops in a Fig and Date glaze...


I could see people pleasantly intoxicated all around...


Meanwhile Zbi pours in Johnnie Walker Double Black to make an Indianized  cocktail...


Garam Masala infused Maple syrup goes in...


Double Black Maple Masala Old Fashioned... 


Here's the recipe...


Double Black Maple Masala was paired with Galouti Kabab...


The drink I've been waiting for arrived finally. Johnnie Walker Double Black served with just a splash of water...

This was paired with Chocolate cake made from Belgian Chocolate...


They had a rather lavish dinner spread too...


Breads...


Meatloaf...


Thai Chicken Yellow Curry, Noodles, Jasmine Rice...


The making of Banana Split was a fun thing to watch...


Adding whisky to the sautéed banana...



Set the alcohol in the dish on fire...


Add icecream...


A piece of banana dipped in chocolate...


Top it with some nuts and a drizzle of caramel...


My other picks from the dessert counter...

Coming back to Johnnie Walker Double Black, here are the tasting notes:

Appearance: Intense and stormy
Nose: Peat smoke shining through rich raisins and dried fruit 
Palate: Apples, pears and orange zest bring freshness while creamy vanilla and spice bring a softness and sweetness to the tongue
Finish: The long warming finish combines spicy oak tannins and lingering smoke 
Conclusion: A smoky, intense whisky of wonderful balance and power

Johnnie Walker Double Black is best taken with water; this is the perfect way to release the smoky flavours.

Leaving you with the lovely smile of RashmiRekha...



McCafe Bangalore in pictures


McCafé, an in-house-coffee style chain is one of McDonald’s successful global brand extensions which was created and launched in Melbourne, Australia in 1993. I was at one of the three newly opened McCafés in Bangalore.

Here's a picture tour...


I ordered a Cappuccino which came with a cute piece of chocolate marble cake. The coffee was strong and flavorful. I liked the artwork and wanted to see how it is made...

McCafé uses only Arabica coffee beans sourced locally from Chikmagalur the birth place of coffee in India where the seed was first sown about 350 years ago. 

Here's how a cup of cappuccino is made with that artwork...


The end product is the perfect balance of full-bodied taste and sweetness, combined with a rounded smooth aftertaste...



Here's a demo of the Mocha being made. Whole or non-fat steamed milk and chocolate syrup, topped with whipped cream and chocolate syrup...


The Aroma of the espresso coffee is delicate and refined...


Iced lattes are available with syrup options of Caramel, Hazelnut and Vanilla. I tried the Caramel Coffee Latte...


There are some special cakes for the young ones that will make their eyes pop!



Chocolate express cake...

Banana Walnut cake...


Vanilla Chocolate-chip muffin... 


Blueberry cheese cake...


Chocolate-chip muffin...


We also got to make some customized shakes by choosing our own ingredients...

It is physically impossible to visit McDonalds and not have a burger. Here's my Spicy Chicken Burger...


And the spicy chicken wings...

So what's the verdict? Well, after tasting all the drinks, I would have to say that on the whole it was a tasty line-up of drinks. With decent pricing, McCafé is definitely worth trying.

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