ONE of the most highly acclaimed chefs in London and the South East has chosen Rye as the venue for his new restaurant.
Award winning Dev Biswal caused seismic waves among food critics when he moved from London to open the Ambrette in unfashionable Margate on the Kent coast.
His subtle and delicate take on Indian fusion food soon led to a Michelin Guide recommendation and saw the Ambrette being rated Kent’s number one restaurant by Trip Advisor.
Now Dev has opened a second Ambrette at the White Vine House, in Rye High Street.
Ambrette takes its name from a beautiful flower in Dev’s native India, known for it’s culinary and aphrodisiac qualities, and he chose it to avoid stereotypical names that would only serve to further reinforce the established perception of what Indian food is like.
Inspired by his mother’s cooking in Calcutta, Dev went on to work as a chef in top hotels and restaurants in Dubai and London before pursuing his dream of presenting his unique interpretation of Indian flavours.
Dev’s cooking is about colour, texture and the way flavours complement each other rather than fiery heat and huge portions.
He said: “I don’t cook curry or use curry powder. Curry is a very Anglicised creation.
“We have a lot of vegetarians in London and the food has strong regional influences.
“I draw inspiration from age-old Indian recipes and then use different varieties of spices and fresh ingredients to build them up..
“Then I look at the aesthetics – I want to make it look good on the plate.
“Eating is a feast of the senses, it is all about flavours, textures and visuals.”
Dev believes in using locally sourced food and making good use of the natural harvest of the sea.
His decision to open in Rye was something of a happy accident. Dev explains: “I had spent a long time driving around and looking at places and just stopped in Rye for a coffee. Someone mentioned the White Vine, so I took a look and it was perfect.”
As well as supporting local food producers Dev is also a keen champion of small local craft brewers, serving up locally produced real ales from Gadds, at Ramsgate in his Margate restaurant, something he plans to incorporate at Rye too.
In the future he plans to open on the continent where his style of cooking is not readily available.
Back in Rye, Dev is planning on holding a wine-tasting event at Ambrette on Sunday January 29 where he will match wines to some of the dishes he creates.