Chinese cuisine is widely seen as representing one of the richest and most diverse culinary heritages in the world. It originated in different regions of China and has been introduced to other parts of the world- from Southeast Asia to North America and Western Europe.
China has distinct geographical demarcations, and each region has its traditional style of cooking. The ingredients used in the food are based on the natural agricultural products of the region.
In Northern China, for example, wheat is eaten more than rice as a staple food. Food using wheat as its main ingredient, such as noodles and dumplings is prevalent there. China’s Southern cuisine uses far more rice, with such staples as rice noodles and zongzi – sticky rice wrapped in leaves. Southern food is typically spicier, and many minorities eat chilies every day.
Cuisine in China is a harmonious integration of color, aroma, taste, shape and the finesse of the instruments. For the cooking process, chefs pick the choicest ingredients and seasonings while employing unparalleled complicated skills handed down from their forefathers, ever aspiring to their ideal of perfection for all the senses. Among the many cooking methods they use are boiling, stewing, braising, frying, steaming, crisping, baking, and simmering and so on. When they finish their masterpieces they are arranged on a variety of plates and dishes so that they are a real pleasure to view, to smell and ultimately to savor.
“House of Han” at Crowne Plaza Jaipur presents all the precision in a similar manner. As we walked into this lavish yet elegant place, a huge red door with big golden lion head handles welcomed us. House of Han, which literally translates to House of China, reflects a unique combination of creative yet traditional Sichuan dishes that reinforces the restaurant as a high-end destination for Chinese delights in Jaipur. Designed to emanate the warmth of a typical Chinese home, House of Han offers a wide range of gastronomic delights, complemented with exquisite wines.
The interiors have been wonderfully done, featuring woodwork with beautiful Chinese paintings. Cutlery, crockery, tableware and other object d’arts for the interiors have been specially imported from China. All these elements combined, brings to life the character of House of Han. The restaurant comprises of four private dining areas and seating for 96 pax.
Our feast began with the most authentic “Conpoy Seafood Soup” and a “Veg Wonton Soup” which were really hearty and simple on flavors. Served in a small soup pot with lid, it felt like we were in China. For the starters, we were presented with the most awesome dimsums like the Crystal Chicken Dumplings, Vegetable Dumplings and the Prawn Sui Mai. The round table which had even number of chairs (auspicious to the Chinese) and a rotary glass table on it had many dips and sauces as accompaniments to the dishes served.
This lovely teahouse showcased a beautiful tea serving ceremony. The tea pot with a long spout known as the “long spout kettle” was used as done in China to pour Jasmine tea in small cups. Watching that was a spectacle to the eyes, as holding and pouring tea from the long spout copper pot needs a lot of practice and courage.
Coming back to the sumptuous fare created by none other than the expat Chef Lou, who has no less than magical hands! House of Han’s Celebrated Chef Jinhong Luo is from the heartland of Southwestern China. He, along with his culinary team, is showcasing his specialty dishes using sophisticated cooking skills to meet our local preferences. Chef brings with him 16 years of experience in serving Oriental cuisine. Chef Jinhong Luo who has worked with several hotel groups and popular restaurant chains in the past is known for his excellent skills in making dimsums and wok stir fry. Besides this, Chef also specializes in making Cantonese, Hunan and Sichuan dishes.
The next was the Deep Fried Onion Cakes which were very much like our own kachoris, crispy and yummy. The crispy fried lamb was another flavorful and spicy dish which suits our palettes very well. I loved the chicken steamed buns or baos as we know them. My colleagues loved the prawn spring rolls so much that they re ordered the same again. I can’t savour them as I am allergic to shell fish….. my bad !! Same was with the beautiful and all so inviting crispy lobster served whole on a plate. Everyone loved it a lot. I enjoyed my Chongoing style chicken which was very well made in Sichuan style, crispy and spicy. The vegetarian fare was as yummy as the non vegetarian one. The Lotus stem cooked in Hunan style was really very good, crispy and tangy. The golden mushrooms in fragrant salt and pepper was yet again a very nice and unique dish, devoured by all.
We were almost full to the brim, but the Chef had already presented us with his main course creations and our table was again full. OMG…wanted to eat it all but was not in a condition to do so….still tried each dish to respect the sentiments of the Chef and his hospitality. The dishes served were Black Mushrooms and Bamboo Shoot with Black Bean Sauce, Spiced Mapo Tofu, Stir Fried Prawns, and Crispy Fried Fish with Xiang La Sauce, Kung Pao Chicken, Pork Spare Ribs Salt n Pepper with vegetable noodles and bamboo basket fried rice.
One of the best fried rice I have ever tasted with the most yummy mushrooms and crispy fish in a spicy and hot sauce. Chef Lou is so hospitable and passionate that he came out at least twice to know if we were enjoying our meal or not. The server Sanjay, who was present throughout our service is highly knowledgeable about the whole cuisine and the concepts of that cooking, we were totally flattered.
The whole experience – ambiance, service, food everything combined together made us feel so overwhelmed that we were totally out of words for some time. I must say, people of Jaipur are lucky to have such a beautiful and nice eating place in their hometown types which only existed in big metros till now.
Crowne Plaza Jaipur has one more flower in their all the more beautiful F & B bouquet which already consisted of other very good food and beverage outlets. House of Han being a specialty restaurant promises to be the best and as authentic as it can be in the capital city of Rajasthan.