We are at the beautiful Java Rain Resorts in Chikmagalur and after a tour of the property, we are now preparing to dive into the dining room, where we are at our happiest 😀
I would describe the food here as sumptuous, multi cuisine fare that spans South Indian, pan Indian, continental and the all pervasive Indo Chinese.
Despite the ubiquitous sound of the major portion of the menu, I must hasten to add that they manage to pull off dining experiences that are memorable, mainly due to the fact that they have chefs with different fortes who get their individual cuisines right. The repertoire may sound a bit too familiar but the openness to customize and the varying nature of the daily menu, does provide a hearty dining experience.
Mirra and Crimson Peak are the 2 dining locations at the resort, where we will now proceed to marvel at the views they offer, as they regale us with food and drink and very attentive service.
Read on for Part 2 of 3 – Java Rain Resorts, Dining Experiences
Mirra the All day dining restaurant –
In keeping with the coffee theme of the resort, Mirra, a traditional Turkish bitter coffee, lends its name to the all day dining restaurant which is open from 7 am to 11 pm.
Far from bitter though and most aesthetically pleasing, the restaurant Mirra is located in the main reception block and is accessed by a helical stairway that seems to suddenly open up in the ground from the lobby.
A generous 90 seater space, this has indoor dining overlooking the blue’tiful swimming pool and an Al fresco area whose overhanging edge juts out aesthetically into space.
The open air seating offers expansive views of the distant Chikmagalur town and the Rameshwara lake and of course the ever present greenery that fills all the gaps in between.
The restaurant serves multi cuisine fare with an A la carte as well as buffet option that is available at every meal, which one can accordingly opt for.
Breakfasts have a substantial choice of South Indian, North Indian and western dishes … and a pool full of water to dine by 😀
Lunch and dinner likewise, are a curation of pan Indian, Continental and Chinese menus.
During off season and low occupancy, the buffet is offered via a menu from which guests can choose, which greatly reduces wastage. Every meal has a new menu and not just the food but even the Indian sweets and other desserts are prepared afresh.
Chikmagalur lies in the Malnad region and a small percentage of the menu offers items from Malnad cuisine like akki rotti (rice bread), neer dosa (rice crepes) and a few accompanying curries.
However, a large percentage of the clientele is happy with multi cuisine fare and for a resort of this size, it is quite impractical to foray into niche cuisines for which there may not be takers on a regular basis.
Nevertheless, it is commendable to note that the staff is quite flexible and willing to cater to evolved palates to the best of their ability 😀
Yes there is the Basa but then again there is the option to request in advance for your fish of choice … and so on.
The serving staff is also very attentive and cooperative and they go out of their way to make the meal a pleasure, which in itself greatly enhances the experience.
The well experienced Executive Chef Shaikh Mujibur has been with the company for several years and was earlier responsible for the operations of the restaurants in Bangalore, which the owners of Java Rain Resorts also manage.
The management and the chef are also on a constant quest to upgrade the menu and there are upcoming interesting enhancements in the various sections like the bakery section etc which is currently quite limited.
However, the fact that the chef is from Bengal ensures that they have certainly got their Bengali sweets right and it was a real pleasure to taste some favorites of mine, like the very well made roshogolla, ras malai, mishti doi etc. Mirra Mirra on the wall, who is the sweetest of us all? 😀
There is a licensed bar in the restaurant with a good range of alcohol.
Crimson Peak Bar and Restaurant –
The second restaurant, the Crimson Peak is a seasonally operated space and plays the role of a bar cum snack restaurant. It is located around 100 meters from Mirra and is perched on a rocky outcrop towards the edge of the property. It is open through the year other than during the rains and also when temperatures dip to uncomfortable levels in winter.
I would describe the structure as a mini Antilla (though I am sure that the resemblance to the Ambani residence is but coincidental :-D) as it soars 50 feet high up in the air, well designed to offer stunning 360 deg views that encompass all the beauty that surrounds the resort. It is said that on a clear day, the Belur dam which is at a distance of 30 km, can also be viewed from here.
Come here for the sunrise and the sunset.
The Crimson Peak offers seating at various levels as one climbs up, and eventually culminates at the topmost level at the bar. A washroom has also been thoughtfully provided.
The tall structure makes liberal use of wood and stone, that lend a rustic effect which blends with the environment. The tables and chairs fashioned out of distressed wood, make for aesthetically pleasing furniture and also work great as backgrounds for food photography.
Speaking of backgrounds, the stunning backdrops of the Mullyangiri and Baba Budan hills, literally heighten the experience and also help to create beautiful pictures. So also the distant Hirekolale lake and temple at the foothills.
The Crimson peak offers the guest a snack menu, where hot snacks like bajjis, bondas and even barbecues are available off a separate menu. These have to be ordered at least 30 minutes in advance since they are brought in a hot case all the way from the centralized kitchen. A set of ready to eat snacks are also available to make the wait a bit easier to deal with, since the cold crisp air can really sharpen the appetite and make it difficult to convince the palate to be patient 😀
Apart from the tea and coffee that is served, the bar also serves alcohol that one can have on the rocks, while gazing at an entire mountain. My lame jokes aside :-D, one has a choice of an array of interesting cocktails which the bartender energetically stirs up. The colors look really brilliant against the background and one can spend hours playing with the camera.
And speaking of photography, do not miss the sunset here, when Crimson peak lives up to its name and the sky is set aflame above the distant mountain tops.
Other dining options –
Apart from these 2 mainstream dining spaces, guests can also go all romantic and book candle light dinners that are served at the gazebos which are all decked up for the occasion.
A 24 hour In Room Dining (IDR) service is also available, where apart from the regular daytime fare, there is also a separate limited options menu that is operational from 11 pm to 7 am.
My dining experience –
I visited the resort, burdened by a sore throat that I had carried all the way from Bangalore. This however entitled me to an unending stream of pampering by the chef and team 😀 who poured me endless cups of a steaming hot ginger-lime-honey beverage which they constantly and willingly prepared specially for me. I was really touched with all the care and found it very endearing that they not only rushed to make it for me at every meal but also made sure that I had flasks full of it at all times in my room.
The ginger water was my savior and hence was accorded a special picture of its own, where we can all pretend that it was something more interesting 😀
As for the food, in the 2 days that I was at here, I had the opportunity to sample some of their local fare which included the akki rotti, neer dosas, chicken curry and some vegetable curries.
The rest of my meals were a mix of the other cuisines and the sous chef Rahul went out of his way to give me a different experience at every occasion, making sure that every meal began with a nice hot soup.
So there was a parade of soups of every kind, starters like veg sheekh kababs, corn fritters, grilled prawns (yes I always make sure of that), chicken 65 etc and main course dishes that consisted of appams, stew, neer dosa, chicken curries, fish steamed in banana leaf parcels, noodles, sizzlers etc and a whole array of desserts right from pastries to Indian sweets to my favorite Bengali sweets which I quite enjoyed despite my sore throat 😀
I was also given a demonstration of appam and stew by Rahul.
As for the bar, I unfortunately could not sample any of the mocktails or cocktails but that did not stop me from shooting them 😀
Food and exercise go hand in hand, hence stuffed as we are, it is time go and work off all those calories. So come along as we check out the various activities that the Java Rain Resort provides.
Please Note – This trip was made in collaboration with Java Rain Resorts. The narrative is based on the inputs that I received from various sources as well as my own experiences.
This itinerary was specially curated hence some of the features might have been personalized accordingly. Before booking, please check the facilities offered in your package.
Nov 25th-27th, 2019