When food transcends into art, the humble plate becomes the canvas upon which the artist presents his masterpiece. Gleaming white porcelain sits regally amongst her entourage on a lush tablecloth. A row of silverware on either side sparkles, while the stemware stands sentry to her right, twinkling under the soft lighting. With all their pageantry, they cannot compete with her. The spectators are hungry for a dazzling display, and she is the stage upon which the magic happens.
For Chef Jason DeSouza, a white plate represents endless opportunities to create, innovate and captivate the senses with gastronomical delights. It comes as no surprise then, that he has chosen to unveil his first restaurant in Goa in December and name it after his muse. The White Plate by Chef Jason promises a culinary experience never seen before in Goa, which is otherwise known for its rich and vibrant culinary landscape.
“For me, fine dining is about elevating the senses,” he says. “It’s a delicate harmony of textures, flavours and scents which come together – gently balanced to deliver an almost transcendental experience.” A sneak peak of the highly-guarded and yet-to-be revealed menu assures a feast for the senses, with exotic offerings from the world of molecular gastronomy. Savoury olive oil snow, amsol foam, caviars made from honeysuckle and cider, kokum gels and ghee dusts are just some of the alluring mentions that catch the eye. Ingeniously paired with some of the choicest ingredients, the mix of flavours and textures seem intriguing indeed.
The philosophy behind this revolutionary menu is based on what Chef Jason considers the coming together of his own heritage, and his experiences in the famed kitchens of Culinary Masters Alain Ducasse and Gordon Ramsey. “From Gordon, I learnt the nuances of building impeccable flavours, while Alain taught me about finesse and elevating dishes to the next level. The offerings at The White Plate will combine these key elements, accentuated by the nostalgic flavours of our own backyards,” he says.
Nostalgia can be a powerful tool within a culinary artist’s hands, capable of transporting one to places unknown and familiar at the same time. A classic goal corned veal tongue paired with edamame pearls and a kokum gel would simultaneously take one back to their grandma’s kitchen and to foreign lands in just one bite. Pairing a kasundi caviar with a modern ratatouille traverses the distances between Kolkata and Paris in a single morsel. Deconstructed, reconstructed, spherified and cloaked in the mystery of scented smokes and beguiling aromas, Chef Jason’s daring combinations at The White Plate urges food enthusiasts to explore the thrill of the unknown, while offering the soul-warming comfort of flavours familiar to our palettes.