An erstwhile member of Ek Bar’s team, Tanisha Phanbuh is back! This time with a ring on her finger, and the title of #TribalGourmet at Living Foodz Channel’s Femme Foodies! She and her husband, award-winning bar mixologist and cocktail magician – Nitin Tiwari, bring the best of the Northeast to Ek Bar. They’re small plates with a big heart.
Celebrated but seldom experienced by the rest of the country, Northeast’s food story is rich, diverse, and all its own. Ek Bar, together with Tanisha Phanbuh and her mixologist husband Nitin Tewari, present a glimpse into the unique culinary culture of the Northeast. On exhibit are small plates curated by Tanisha, the #TribalGourmet and Northeast inspired cocktails by Nitin. Most ingredients that have been used in the dishes have been sourced from Tanisha’s garden in Shillong and brought in from the Northeast.
Sharing his excitement about the pop up, AD Singh, MD, Olive Group says, ‘We are excited about having this Northeastern pop-up. The cuisine has strong flavours, but is still relatively little known, especially outside of the Northeast. Tanisha and Nitin’s love story blossomed at Ek Bar so it was perfect to do a pop-up with them at Ek Bar, which is all about New Indian food where classic flavours are presented in a modern way’.
Hailing from Shillong, Tanisha joined the Olive Family with Ek Bar. In a span of two years, she made her TV debut on Living Foodz’ Femme Foodies – Asia’s First Female Food Truck show, finishing fourth. She used the platform to showcase northeastern food and show the world the otherwise unnoticed diversity of the region. The Mentors on the show lauded her for it and gave her the tag #TribalGourmet. She is now starting #TribalGourmet at Ek Bar with her soulmate Nitin who she met .. at Ek Bar!
Nostalgic and thrilled, Tanisha shares, ‘The #TribalGourmet concept came up while I was on the Femme Foodies Food Truck Show. I wanted to show the world that there’s more to Northeastern food than it being just oriental inspired, spicy or stinky. This pushed me to experiment and #TribalGourmet was born. Few years on, it’s back to home turf for me at Ek Bar, and Nitin and I are ready to take you on a culinary journey of love as we showcase ourselves at Ek Bar!’
When was the last time you ate something for the first time? The food menu for the NorthEastern pop-up has been curated in line with the Ek Bar small plates concept. Authentic tribal flavours with a gourmet twist lie at the heart and soul of Tanisha’s cooking. Highlights on the menu include the Tungrymbai on Toast, fermented soybean paste spread on crispy toast. Robust, delicious and certainly not for the faint hearted; Chayote & Sprouts which is a dish bursting with natural flavour with steamed chayote or squash slices, topped with sprouts and perilla seed dust. The chayote have been flown down from Stanisha’s garden in Shillong. It isn’t a Northeastern menu if it doesn’t have Momos and Tanisha’s ensured you get a taste of comfort yet distinct flavours like banana blossoms with perilla seeds and smoked pork and bamboo shoot. It also isn’t a Northeastern menu if it doesn’t have the infamous Bhut Jolokia! Classic Chicken Wings get a fiery touch, sure to haunt your taste buds – try at your own risk. Other dishes that standout include the shredded Buff & Tyrso, stir fried jaiur (pepper corn) and chilli buff on a bed of wilted tyrso or mustard greens and the Khajing Bora – Manipuri style shrimp pakoras served with chilli garlic chutney. Savoury, succulent and finger licking! The parboiled, sauteed Baby Potatoes are a definite winner, served with tree-tomatoes chutney. Also watch out for Tanisha’s episode-winning dish, Tanisha’s Famous Pork – braised pork belly tossed in black sesame gravy, garnished with red radish. The dish that got Tanisha to earn the #TribalGourmet tag.
Award winning mixologist – Nitin Tewari’s travels and cultural understanding have always influenced his cocktails. While Tanisha’s put together her favourite dishes from the seven sister states , her award-winning mixologist better half Nitin has infused unique Northeastern flavours into his cocktail creations for the pop up.
Nitin has always been proud of what India has to offer which led him to steer Ek Bar in New Delhi – The First Indian cocktail bar that has been highly appreciated for its creativity. Nitin’s philosophy is to showcase India’s rich history, culture, diversity and resources through his cocktails. However, his recent visit to Shillong was different. More than just experiencing a new culture, he adopted it as his own and got married to Tanisha Phanbuh, EkBar’s #TribalGourmet! Nitin fell in love with the freshness of the ingredients and simplicity of northeastern flavours.
Brace yourself for a myriad of unheard flavours, infusions and pairings! Taking the traditional Bloody Mary to a whole new level, is the Bhut Jolokia Mary. Pure fire. Not a braveheart? Not a problem. Nitin has the Beeda Tonic, inspired by the humble betel nut wrapped in a leaf, beeda (paan) which is loved all across the northeast. Influenced by its simplicity, Nitin presents a simple Gin & Tonic with a hint of beeda. The third star of the menu is the Smoked Pork Old Fashioned – the classic Old Fashioned gets a smokey twist. Infused with the deep flavour of smoked pork, and a hint of coffee.
A truly Northeastern love story awaits you at the #NorthEasternPopup at Ek Bar.The Northeast Pop Up started yesterday and will continue for the next 20 days.