At La Panthera, Chef Manuel Olveira's marries flavours and refined techniques with his innovative take on classic European cuisine

Indulge in a glamorous setting as you savour a diverse array of dishes at the latest opening, La Panthera, in the Maximum City

Update: 2024-04-02 09:20 GMT

Chef Manuel Olveira and his wife Mickee Tuljapurkar are known for their famous Spanish restaurant, La Loca Maria. Now, they've opened La Panthera, a new European restaurant. If you've been to La Loca Maria, you might see some similarities, but La Panthera is the fancier of the two, with its shiny brass lights, soft velvet curtains, textured walls and big arches. Even though it can seat 100 people, the place feels cosy and intimate.

Through the interiors at La Panthera, Mickee Tuljapurkar—the owner at La Panthera—aims to capture the soulful longing for old-world European charm, drawing inspiration from the ambiance of a chic living room in a European manor. Every detail is meticulously considered to create a unique aesthetic feel.

An ornate black entrance door immediately makes a statement upon entry. The interiors showcase low-hanging brass chandeliers and bespoke furnishings in warm greens and yellows, blending old-world charm with contemporary elegance. Focal points such as the captivating 15-foot artwork titled "The Beast Within" and the 21-foot marble and wood bar invite guests to relax and soak in the ambiance while enjoying signature cocktails. Graceful arches, textured walls, and velvet curtains add artistic nuances, completing the restaurant's vintage chic captivating design.

The culinary spectacle at La Panthera led by chef Olveira orchestrates a journey inspired by his global travels. The menu boasts innovative creations—think Carpaccio on a filo pastry, Baked Brie with caramelised mushrooms and nuts and not to forget hearty pastas, comforting risotto and wood fired pizzas—that have been made using Indian flour fermented over two days.

Complementing the culinary experience is a meticulously curated liquid menu by mixologist Dwayne D'mello, featuring 14 signature cocktails like the Pisco-based Hurry Up Slowly and Double Happiness, which is La Panthera’s take on a classic Margarita.

What we tried
Chef Manuel really impressed us with his cooking skills during our visit. He started us off with the Tiradito de Hamachi, which had Hamachi fish in pineapple sauce with cucumber pearls for a fresh taste. Then we tried the Beetroot Carpaccio, inspired by his trip to Greece, with roasted beetroot, parmesan cheese and wasabi on crispy filo pastry.

We also enjoyed the Baked Brie with caramelized mushrooms, onions, and nuts, served with sourdough bread. For our main dishes, we had the Cacio-e-Pepe Pasta and the La Panthera Pizza with tomato sauce, burrata cheese, sausage and basil.

What worked
In terms of food, La Panthera's success can be attributed to several factors. Firstly, Chef Manuel's innovative creations, like the Beetroot Carpaccio and Tiradito de Hamachi, truly impressed us with their unique flavors and artistic presentations. Each dish showcased a perfect balance of textures and ingredients, highlighting Chef Manuel's expertise and creativity. Moreover, the use of fresh and quality ingredients ensured that every bite was bursting with flavour. The diverse menu offered a wide range of options, from tapas to wood-fired pizzas, catering to various tastes and preferences

At La Panthera, everything seemed to fall into place perfectly. The ambiance was captivating, blending opulence with intimacy through its intricate decor and inviting atmosphere. The attention to detail was evident everywhere, from the ornate entrance to the thoughtful menu selection. With friendly service and a well-curated beverage list adding to the experience, La Panthera truly stood out as a memorable dining destination that left us eager for more.


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