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Perspective

Food for the Soul
In this indulgence-filled year-end special edition Outlook Business, celebrates three loves – food, fashion and travel – without apology

N Mahalakshmi

When you look back at the year gone by, what was the best hour or day you spent? Was it a delicious meal you had with family or friends, or a long run or trek that set the heart pumping or was it slipping on a luxuriously soft pair of shoes. Admit it, we are all slaves to our senses. We, at Outlook Business, therefore decided to celebrate our three loves – food, fashion and travel – without apology.

In this indulgence-filled year-end special edition, restaurateurs share memories of finger-licking meals, and surprisingly most say that the company they had or the familiar, ghar-ka flavours are what made them special. Take for instance, insanely successful restaurateur AD Singh or celebrity chef Ritu Dalmia. He wavers from his strict diet regime only for his wife’s pesto chicken and rice, and Dalmia finds comfort in dal chawal, even though her Italian restaurants have people queuing up. There are also stories from the adventurous Rahul Akerkar. He has tried varied cuisines and strange game meats, but he still remembers his ajji as one of the best cooks. A favourite from her kitchen is a traditional Maharashtrian dish – the subtle valachi amti. 

The style icons featured here may start trends but it is hard for them to give up their individual quirks. Stylist Adhuna Bhabani wears mullets, a tough hair cut to pull off, when her heart wills it. Ad honcho Tarun Rai still holds the loud 90’s ties close to his heart and MP Shashi Tharoor continues to collect handkerchiefs in bold colours and designs, whatever his colleagues in white may think of it. Personal likes, preciously guarded, are what makes these well-dressed folks original.

Finally, travel enthusiasts remember scaling heights and covering great distances. But they are happiest chatting about the life-long friends they made, like Levi Strauss’ Sanjeev Mohanty, and the humbling scale of landscapes, like lawyer and mountaineer Somasekhar Sundaresan. On the road is where they met their best and worst selves. 

So, maybe our senses guide us. But, what completes an unforgettable experience is that warm, fuzzy feeling that you can’t quite put a finger on. With that thought, happy reading, and an even happier 2019.

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