Chef Sid Sahrawat Reinventing NZ Fine Dining
Sid Sahrawat has been serving up a beautifully executed culinary adventure at his Auckland finer diner Sidart since 2009. The chef and restaurateur relocated to New Zealand from India with his wife Chand in 2000 and began working in some of the country’s most acclaimed kitchens, including Toto, Parnell’s The George and The Grove in Auckland. The Gourmet Traveller caught up with Sahrawat to find out more about the vision for his restaurants and what we can expect from him next.
Adding a third restaurant to their stable in September this year with the acquisition of The French Café – aptly relaunched as Sid at The French Café – the Sahrawats’ New Zealand takeover seems inevitable.
“Growing up in India and my love for Indian cuisine has influenced my palate,” Sahrawat tells the magazine. “I always think about how to enhance flavours and ensure dishes have texture.”
He explains what makes his restaurants so successful, and what his favourite French Café dish is.
“I think it’s our staff; how passionate they are and their ability to share our vision. We constantly and consistently create the best experiences we can for our guests. We also believe in always evolving – whether it’s with new menus to reflect the seasonality of ingredients, or through changing concepts and interiors.
“My favourite dish is the sourdough ice cream with blackberries, strawberries (and shards made from them), basil oil and dulce de leche. It’s a dish that showcases seasonal berries and also uses off-cuts from the sourdough bread we bake in house, so it reduces wastage.
“One of my favourite wines at the moment is the 2014 Millton Clos de Ste Anne chardonnay from Gisborne. I love New Zealand chardonnays and this one is particularly well structured.”
Original article by Gourmet Traveller, January 7, 2019.