Goan Lamb Chops, spiced cream cheese
Awarded by Awfulfoodreviews
It seems like every upmarket Indian restaurant has lamb chops in some form. Most of the time, there's a simple formula for appetising Indian Lamb Chops: fruit enzyme tendered lamb chops, a barrage of powerful spices, and a Tandoori tinge for good measure. Surprisingly, the restaurant the does the best Indian style Lamb Chops turns the formula on its head. Being the only Indian restaurant on the Metro Top 50, Cassia is known for their experimental approach on Indian gastronomy. With dishes featuring all kinds of emulsions, stuffing, spice pairing, and deconstruction, their Goan Lamb Chops is not only distinguishable from other restaurants, but also within their own menu. Rather than a potent melange of spices or reaching new culinary heights from a technical standpoint, Cassia's Goan Lamb Chops follows a simple mantra; letting the taste of the lamb shine. Using the Wagyu equivalent of Lamb, these chops are in equilibrium when it comes to tenderness. Sinking your teeth through, the lamb is decadently plush. Unlike chops where papaya or pineapple are used to tenderize the meat, these ones are simply a cut above the rest in terms of quality and the way in which it is cooked. Despite it being luxuriously soft, it still somehow has bite to it rather than dismembering into a fibrous rubble like other Indian Chops. As far as the taste goes - pure unfiltered opulence. You wouldn't drown a Japanese A5 Wagyu in Tandoori Marinade, so why do that to the lamb equivalent? The juiciness of these chops are unparalleled. Saturated with robust umami flavours, the emblematic gaminess of the lamb is somehow silky smooth in this. The spiced undertone is discreet, as its purpose is to enhance the true taste of the lamb rather than to change or mask it. The Goan Lamb Chops are a certified classic at Cassia. There's a reason why you can see kitchen staff walking around with its name on their t-shirts. Not only are they the best Indian Lamb Chops in Auckland, but arguably the best Lamb Chops period. If someone visiting New Zealand wanted to experience the magnum opus of New Zealand Lamb, there's no other dish I would recommend. It not only pays homage to the Indian roots of the dish, but pays the upmost respect to the sublime beauty of New Zealand Lamb.