‘Our food is truthful’ says executive chef Sameer Taneja as his London restaurant reclaims its Michelin status
Earlier this year, the revered French chef Pierre Koffmann made a prediction in Caterer magazine. He said his protégée, chef Sameer Taneja, who had taken charge at the restaurant Benares in 2019, would win it a Michelin star.
Koffmann’s judgement was on point. This week, as the famous red book announced its lists for the UK and Ireland in an unusual online ceremony, Benares earned a one star — the only Indian restaurant of the seven new entrants to the ‘one star’ list in London. (Amaya, Veeraswamy, Quilon, Trishna and Gymkhana have retained their one star apiece, too.)
Koffmann’s confidence may have stemmed from the food he had been sampling as Taneja went about reworking Benares’ menu, shifting its focus from what had sometimes been dubbed “Frenchified” to dishes that still fit the bill of “inventive” but are also deeply rooted in regional…