Wilderness-to-table restaurant Masque launched in Mumbai in September 2016 with a commitment to using purely local ingredients to create sustainable dishes. Head Chef Prateek Sadhu – who trained at a range of North America and Europe’s best, including Alinea, Le Bernardin, The French Laundry and Noma – and co-owner Aditi Dugar have travelled the length and breadth of India to bring to focus the country’s lost ingredients, foraging specifically from the Himalayan belt.
At Masque, ingredients take centre stage. Inspired by the agricultural abundance India has to offer, Masque uses the highest quality ingredients and produce sourced entirely within the region – some of which are grown on Masque’s own organic farm – to create seasonal menus. Set menus of ten and fourteen courses change seasonally and are inspired by Prateek and Aditi’s strong ties with local farmers. Diverse and unusual ingredients, including fiddlehead ferns, hisalu berries, kafal and ghingaroo fruit, challenge the misguided notion that India cannot grow exotic fruits and vegetables.
High-quality ingredients are an important principle in Ayurveda, as they elevate the sensory experience of eating. With its philosophy rooted in this ancient alternative medicine, Masque has also created a craft cocktail menu inspired by the five elements found in Ayurveda which are associated with the senses: earth, water, fire, air, space. Ayurveda also teaches that what is truly good and healthy for the individual, will also be good and healthy for the larger community and the environment. Masque is a pioneer in Indian cuisine for its dedication to sourcing sustainable and indigenous ingredients, and for using nearly every part of each ingredient in an effort to minimise food waste.
Masque has blazed its own trail through India’s culinary landscape, garnering a reputation for constant innovation and numerous accolades along the way. Its commitment to sustainability saw Masque ranked among the top 10 on Food Tank’s 2016 list of restaurant innovators in the world. That same year, Prateek was awarded most innovative chef of the year by the Western Culinary Association of India. Condé Nast Traveller India ranked Masque seventh on the Top Restaurant Awards 2017 list and named Prateek chef of the year.
Design of Masque
Occupying a warehouse in Mumbai’s once buzzing cotton district, Masque’s interior taps into the natural architecture of the space and reflects the Wabi Sabi principle that true beauty is imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. Designed by Ashiesh Shah, many of the elements that might be considered ‘de rigueur’ in most luxury restaurants are foregone in favour of bare, humble, and unconventional elements. Natural light floods in from the skylight and illuminates the restaurant floor, which is part white polished marble and part textured slate. The use of rosewood tables, brass structures, stone clad walls and floors mirror Masque’s approach to indigenous and foraged ingredients.
The name Masque itself alludes to the idea of performance. The space is transformative; dramatic architectural details (an undulating wall or arch which conceals a stairway) inspired by structures of pioneering modernists like Le Corbusier, meet a sensibility that is both subtle and luxurious (an 18-foot-long velvet curtain). The large site-specific sculptural installation by artist Rathin Barman acts as a pivot point for the restaurant, making an otherwise expansive space feel more intimate.
Unit G3, Laxmi Woollen Mills
Shakti Mills Lane, Off Dr. E. Moses Road
Dinner: Tuesday to Sunday 19:30 to 00:30 (last seating at 22:30)
Sunday brunch: 12:30 to 15:30
For further press information on Masque, Prateek Sadhu or Aditi Dugar, please contact Sauce Communications:
Sarah Canet | Sarah@saucecommunications.com| 020 8600 3622
Emily Shankar | Emily@saucecommunications.com | 020 8600 3647