Cuisine Choreography of a Chicago Sangeet

What happens when two food obsessed South Asian clients come together as a couple and want to plan the celebration before their ceremony day? The answer: a marvelously detailed and executed late summer dance and food centric extravaganza Sangeet hosted at the wonderful Harold Washington Library in downtown Chicago.  Later I found out they were also planning a ceremony and luncheon which Entertaining Company also catered. Will save those stories for another post! I had so much fun celebrating with this couple, here are a few photos I took on my phone:

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In addition to initially discovering that the bride and groom are extreme foodies, these are clients who also scripted and produced events for a living. Sapna, is a scripted development executive at Lifetime in LA. The groom, Gaurav, is a London born Emmy Award Winning former Head of Digital Programming and Innovation at MTV. This Sangeet was going to be well planned and well thought out from guest welcome to dessert (thank you planner Linda Alpert of Affairs with Linda).The couple’s foodie cred  was added when we found that the groom is a personal friend of Tim and Nina Zagat of Zagat Guide and had spent the last 10 Thanksgivings celebrating fabulous food and wine together. After all, the Zagats have made their reputation as curators of the world’s best restaurants and nightlife.

As way of planning background, Gaurav and I started speaking about 18 months prior to the wedding date. He told me his passion for food had been a personal and business one for years. As a couple, Sapna and Gaurav had been lucky enough to eat at some of the best places in the world, including Jiro in Tokyo and El Bulli in Spain. Food, I was told, was a very important part of their wedding and attention to detail of the menu and an immaculate presentation were going to be key. The couple was seeking a perfect blend of East and West flavors in the menu along with creative and inspired presentation, but never wanted to veer too far from what guests would consider great Indian food. They were seeking a new way of expressing and experiencing food without compromising on taste. They wanted dishes that would be surprising and like nothing else encountered before at other weddings and events.

Later, through many emails, texts, phone calls and meals together, we developed a lovely foodie celebration with Gaurav and Sapna that included a Mangolicious Welcome Drink, Chaat in a Cone, and Street Stall Stations highlighting Skewers, Indo –Chinese and a wild profusion of curries and rices, ending with a rolling cart of desserts.

Here are some pictures that tell their wonderful Sangeet story. Thank you Pratik Shah for the photos!

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The couple also hired Katia Romanova, who took these lovely photos of the Sangeet celebration. Thanks Katia!

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