The earth-toned design sets the rhythm for the ingredient-driven dishes composing the thought-driven concept menu by founder and chef (of the city’s most popular organic bistro, Sequel), Vanika Choudhary. Noon (Kashmiri for salt) arrives with an elegant food atlas, much like its soft-spoken owner, understanding and honouring foodways and the journey of indigenous ingredients from the forests to the table. In complete sync with the ecosystem around us, the offerings at Noon create sheer harmony, and are a startling tribute to pure living.
Everything is cooked using A2 ghee here. The kitchen is bereft of non-stick pans, only cast-iron ware and clay pots rule as does coal and wood for fuel. “Cooking on coal and wood is better for digestion. For me, going back to my roots isn’t a fad,” says Choudhary decisively, having spent a large part of her early years in Jammu and Srinagar where her nani sunned kanji made of black carrots in big martabans in the courtyard during the winter months. “Using age-old techniques like sun drying, fermenting, sprouting, soaking and eating fresh, local, seasonal has always been a way of life as far as my memory goes,” she shares, having enjoyed foraging journeys near Jammu; in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh for dandelion greens, karondas and lotus stems during her childhood. “A meal at Noon isn’t just about the food. It is about serving our traditional food philosophy in fun, contemporary formats.”
Shilpi Madan for Sunday Standard