Benares announces new executive chef, Sameer Taneja

Sameer Taneja

Sameer Taneja

Executive Chef 18th September 2019

Benares announces new executive chef, Sameer Taneja

Benares - the Michelin-starred Indian Restaurant in Mayfair - welcomes the return of Sameer Taneja as Executive Chef, who will launch new menus at the celebrated main restaurant as well as the bar.

Chef Taneja previously worked at Benares from 2011-2015, and his new dishes will be showcased in an a la carte menu and a multi-course tasting menu with paired wines. Both of the new menus will be available from October 2019.

Originally from Delhi, Chef Taneja weaves distinctive Indian elements through each of his dishes, whilst incorporating techniques learned from his extensive time cooking in European kitchens.

With a penchant for seafood and fish dishes, highlights in Chef Taneja’s new menu include Baked Scallop Malabar: Hand dived Scottish Scallop Baked in the Shell with Coconut Curry, accompanied by Malabar Paratha; and Hiran Ki Chaap: Venison Cutlet spiced with Juniper Garam Masala along with Kutchumber Rose.

Other notable additions include a ceviche-like dish of Sea Bream cured in Aam Panna Tiger Milk, Avocado & Masala Boondi. New desserts include Anjeer Malai Kulfi: Classic Fig Ice Cream with Pista Rogan and Crumbs and Spiced Chocolate Cherry Lava Cake with Malai Ice Cream.

Chef Taneja started his career in India, after receiving a Bachelor's degree in Culinary Arts. Prior to Benares, he gained experience in kitchens around the world, including the luxury Oberoi Rajvilas hotel in Jaipur, the Three-Michelin-starred Waterside Inn in Bray, as well as working alongside celebrated chefs Pierre Koffmann at Koffmann’s, Joel Antunes of Brasserie Joel and Pascal Proyart of One-O-One Restaurants in London.

“Food has always been a central part of my life since childhood because it was a central component of all family gatherings and events. I am delighted to return and to put my humble yet progressive mark on the menu at a famed institution such as Benares and introduce our guests to new flavours and dishes,” he said.

An express Thali lunch menu will also be offered for a fixed price of £33 including a drink, allowing diners to eat in 45 minutes or less. This will be served Monday through Friday. Sameer’s new dishes are available on the a la carte menu as well as the seven course tasting menu, which is also available with wine pairing.

For lunch, guests also have the choice of a two or three-course set menu with optional wine pairing. Sameer is also revamping the very popular pre-theatre menu.