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The Warsaw Voice » Culture » March 31, 2015
On the town
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Chopin-Inspired Menu at Tamka 43 Restaurant
March 31, 2015   
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The Tamka 43 restaurant, housed in the Fryderyk Chopin Institute in Warsaw, is celebrating 205 years since the great musician’s birth with a new menu inspired by his life and culinary tastes.

Working on the special menu, Tamka 43 chef Rafał Hreczaniuk and sommelier Norbert Dudziński came up with specialties such as venison steak tartare, Marengo veal, bread soup and sous-vide zander with grilled chives. The dishes even come with a special selection of Chopin’s music compositions for piano.

The choice of dishes, music and wines was consulted with Wojciech Bońkowski, a wine critic and music expert who works regularly with the Chopin Institute. According to bońkowski, the anniversary of Chopin’s birth is a good opportunity to look at the Polish composer from a different angle. “For example, in terms of what he ate and drank,” says Bońkowski. “Chopin hardly ever mentioned these details himself, but based on his friends’ accounts and historical sources, we can recreate an approximation of his tastes.” The latter were to a large extent shaped by traditional Polish cuisine, rich in game dishes, aromatic spices and such distinctively Polish ingredients as red beets, celery, carrots and different kinds of groats. Until the end of the 17th century, Poles also ate a lot of kale, rutabaga and parsnips. These have recently been rediscovered by chefs. Apparently, Chopin relished such vegetables, especially in stews.

Chopin expanded his culinary horizons when he went to France. As he frequented elegant restaurants in Paris, he discovered new flavors and intriguing combinations, for example, sweet-and-sour dishes. Chopin is also known to have been partial to good wine and he liked to sit in a bar and share a bottle of Bordeaux. He would also expertly order seafood for groups of friends at the famous Parisian restaurant Le Rocher de Cancale.

Few know that Chopin loved chocolate and had it brought specifically for him from Burgundy. The new menu at Tamka 43 marks Chopin’s sweet tooth with a dessert called Chocolate Dainty.
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