Asha’s, the fine dining Indian restaurant on Peter Street, is celebrating National Curry Week as the only Manchester-based Indian restaurant ever to feature in the Michelin Guide.
In fact, glasses are being raised for a double first because the restaurant, which opened just two years ago, has retained its Michelin status for a second successive year.
The restaurant, which boasts the BolliBar on the lower floor, a glitzy cocktail bar serving much admired Indian taster dishes, has been awarded a highly prestigious Michelin plate, as has its sister restaurant in Birmingham.
The guide’s symbol L’Assiette Michelin is awarded to restaurants that have undergone the same scrutiny as those that have achieved the illustrious stars, and is a recognition of a very high standard of dining.
The restaurant was also awarded two Couverts (‘knife and fork’ symbols) which refers not to the food quality but to the levels of comfort and ambience the restaurant provides. This is judged using many different criteria including service, decor and atmosphere, right down to the waiter’s greeting and even the arrangement of glassware on the table. It’s an indicator of the quality of the overall experience.
To help capture the true flavours and experience of traditional Indian cuisine, the ARIL Group, which manages Asha’s Manchester restaurant, enlisted Ashwani Rangta as head chef. Rangta is hugely experienced in delivering authentic dishes with a contemporary twist and cooked for heads of state and luminaries at five star hotels around the country before joining the Asha’s group in 2014.
“Rangta’s innovative menu continues to celebrate authentic Indian flavours and spices, while providing a modern twist on recipes our guests know and love – all using the best fresh and locally sourced ingredients,” said ARIL Group managing director Susan Potter.
“We are extremely proud that this year it is not only our food that has been credited, but our restaurant experience too. We work hard to ensure that from the moment our guests walk through the door to the moment they leave they have the very best experience possible, and this award is a testament to this.”
Asha’s was created by legendary Bollywood star of stage and screen Asha Bhosle, who is also the most recorded voice in history. Her life has been characterised by two passions – music and food.
From humble beginnings in the hamlet of Goar, eastern India, Asha’s journey took her to Mumbai and the pinnacle of Bollywood stardom.
Celebrating her country’s rich cultural heritage and culinary traditions, she founded Asha’s – a global group of ground-breaking Indian restaurants with restaurants in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Kuwait and Qatar
Asha’s status as a Bollywood icon has seen her collaborate with some of the world’s leading recording artists, from the legendary Shujaat Khan and Michael Stipe to Boy George and Manchester’s own Simply Red. The 1997 hit single Brimful of Asha is a tribute to her.
More recently, her trailblazing restaurants in some of the world’s most glamorous locations have seen her celebrity connections extend far beyond the world of music.