Who: Abigail Ahern, Interior Designer Where: Maison et Objet, Paris…
What: Indian Restaurant in Berlin
Where: Berlin – Prenzlauer Berg
Aparna Aurora is actually a fashion designer and designed her collections for GAP, Hugo Boss and other brands for over 20 years. Born in Delhi and coined by lots of stays in South India, Aparna Aurora already lived in ten countries. Besides her mother language Hindi she speaks English, Spanish, Portuguese and German fluent. 2013 Aparna Aurora came to Berlin with her husband and her children. The enthusiastic amateur chef first made a stab at catering, before she opened her own restaurant “Chutnify” in Prenzlauer Berg last November. With only 40 seats and a small but fine menu, “Chutnify” developed very quickly to one of the top hotspots in the Berlin restaurant scene.
MyStylery: How did you come up with the name “Chutnify”?
Aparna Aurora: I was fascinated by Salman Rushdies roman “Midnight’s Children”, in which the term “Chutnification” stands for the transformation from the Indian into the English language. The advancement and change is also the claim for our dishes. Chutney is a main part of the Indian kitchen and for us the centre of all our dishes.
MS: The Indian restaurants in Berlin have a rather moderate reputation. Do you see a challenge in this for Chutnify? On what do you place your special focus?
AA: We were pretty certain that our concept is going to work out. Especially the Berliners are open and adventuresome concerning restaurants. We’re cooking after old Indian recipes and our chutneys are freshly made everyday. Generally our fresh ingredients are being made in their region; we relinquish ready-made products, chemical flavour enhancers and heavy cream sauces. The guests each choose between seven starters and main courses, we are cooking low in fat, gluten free and offer vegan and vegetarian options.
MS: Your attention to detail already starts with the design of your menu, which is held together by cardboards and tells the story about the region and ingredients of each dish. What’s about the dosas?
AA: Dosa is like an Indian wrap consisting out of lentils and rice on a base of a fermented sourdough. In the Indian kitchen dosas are so popular that they’re being served to nearly every meal, no matter what time. It took us about eight months to create the perfect dosa recipe.
MS: When I’m thinking of Indian restaurants I’m thinking of elephants, lotus blossoms, Shiva, waving flags and orange pennants…
AA: … and this is the exact cliché we didn’t want to fulfil. We wanted to create a rather colourful, cosy living room-atmosphere, with Indian details like old advertising posters or matchboxes. We renovated for three weeks. Everyone had to lend a hand. For example my husband and children painted the chairs. And there’s always something to do. Right now we’re designing the outdoor area with 40 seats. The summer can come. BvH
अपने भोजन का आनंद लें – Enjoy your meal!
Tip: Booking is a must!