South Indian cuisine in its various avatars may abound in Goa today, but gourmands are constantly seeking something new. And more so, when the offerings and representation of the cuisine is refreshingly new. ‘Hosa’ means “new” in Kannada and denotes Southern flavours, presented in a modern form.
Ambience & Décor
Brightly lit interiors dotted with plants and Portuguese design elements give Hosa a modern chic feel. Owner EHV’s design director Rohini Kapur and architect and designer Ashley Mascaren have managed to retain the susegad Goa vibe and character of the location - an old Goan bungalow at Siolim - while contemporizing the interiors.
Although the décor is an amalgamation of the old and the new - modern furniture meets Portuguese tiles, it seamlessly merges to create harmony. Below the stately arches, the bar confronts the eye as one enters and is energetic and alluring at once. The restaurant, spread across multiple areas, seats 100 people, including 25 in the elegant Patio.
Hosa pays tribute to art in various forms – displaying works of the Southern maestros and budding artists, which fits its ethos and complements the décor. The well-designed Art Room doubles up as a gallery during the day and transforms into a private dining area in the evening with a pre-function section, complete with its own bar counter. An extensive outdoor seating, dotting the promenade on the banks of the Chapora River, is on the cards in the near future.
Food & Drinks
The food menu at Hosa, showcasing South Indian flavours and ingredients, has been laboured over by Brand Chef Suresh DC and his team. No tired stereotypes of South Indian food here. Each dish spells comfort and familiarity, yet you can expect the unexpected.
Exciting small plates abound. The Curry Leaf Cured Snapper, inspired by a ceviche, is redolent with Southern spices and there is an explosion of fresh flavours in each bite.
Almond 65 teases the palate with its flavours and textures; the pachadi topping balancing the punchy almond fritters, served on a bed of curd rice. Nostalgia on a plate.
The Plantain Pepper Roast is a medley of textures and flavours, paired with the soft and flaky nool parotta.
The Coconut Shrimp, although boasting of palate-pleasing flavours, is a short distance away from being one of the best. Other must-try small plates include Puli Munchi Wings and the Malanad Pork Spare Ribs.
If one can still manage to try large plates, the Chicken Meatball Gassi will blow your mind. The well-executed and flavourful Hyderabadi Jackfruit Kofta is equally a star.
Dosas and appams are on the menu too, but as accompaniments to mop up dishes like the Guntur crab fry and rich ghee roasts of jackfruit or goat.
Hosa is a place where meat lovers will gladly pay obeisance to vegetarian dishes. The main dishes apart, the real flavours also prevail in the smears, dressings and garnishes.
The desserts menu is quite creative. Case in point: the Kesari Bath is served with a saffron sorbet and caramelized pineapple, the tart, the tangy and the sweet meshing effortlessly.
The Mysore Pak coffee cheese cake is a masterpiece in technique, scoring high on flavours. Each bite unravels new flavours, achingly familiar, but exciting.
Each dish at Hosa has a tried-and-tested finesse, taking an unexpected turn, to surprise the diner, yet cleverly maintaining the sanctity of the flavours.
With Varun Sharma of the award-winning Comorin bar at the helm in Hosa, the cocktails are exciting. Expect classic, tiki and modern interpretations. The ‘Rum Kokum Cola’ with the in-house kokum soda, is a winner. The aromatic ‘Once upon a time in Parma’, and ‘Kaapi Time’, stand out. For non-alcoholics, the Rasam Mary is a rare indulgence. An extensive wine list complements the food menu.
Karaikudi chicken vada, Chili Pork roast or the Vegetable Poriyal Samosa, from the Bar snacks menu, complete the bar experience.
The personalised, professional service from the alert staff, is exemplary.
Given its lineage - EHV International (the company behind Indian Accent, Comorin and the recently launched Koloman, New York,) Hosa appears to have scored a hit, and could become a destination for every gourmand visiting Goa.