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By Niki Gower

Fine-Dining with a breathtaking view 

Chill Bar and Restaurant – set on the La Misère road at Belle Vue on Mahé – has long been a favourite among Seychellois and visitors alike. Recently taken under new management this staple of the dining scene in Seychelles is going from strength-to-strength as it fine tunes the elements that make it such a  special experience eating there.
One of the biggest changes has been the change from a “steak-house” offering traditional meaty favourites to a fine-dining establishment, adding an air of refinement to Chilli Bar without losing any of its charm.
Under the leadership of Head-Chef Patrick Barbe, who recently won the “Main Course” division at the annual Seychelles National Culinary Contest, the improved menu offers diners a choice of dishes that are rooted in traditional Creole flavours that are accentuated by influences from other cultures, particularly the French cuisine culture. A Cuban taste even makes its way into the main course selection.
 Seychelles Livin’ was recently hosted by Chilli Bar for a three course meal on a moonlit evening, with our table set on the restaurant’s veranda overlooking the breathtaking St. Anne Bay. For starters, my date and I shared the “Smoked Fish and Mango Salad” as well as the “Tuna Tartar”. Both were fresh and light, and a perfect start to whet our appetites. 
For Mains, I had the Fish Millefeuille, which features a fish millefeuille fillet stuffed with spinach fricassee, garnished tomato and basil comfit, and served with a portion of almond rice. Being a pescatarian (vegetarian that eats fish), I have had quite my fair share of the various fish dishes available in Seychelles, and this was definitely one of the tastiest and succulent I have had so far. 
My date had the Fish Curry from Cuba. Coconut,  peanuts, mint, lime and other selected spices make this curry something special – and I had to have a second tasting as it was so refreshing.
For dessert I had the Mint Parfait Glacer Mango Coulis and my date had the Passion Fruit Barvarois with Strawberry Coulis. Both were very tasty, but I must admit that the creamy silk-like texture of the parfait makes it my favourite of the two. 
When making the reservation I let slip that it was my date’s birthday that evening. Something that added an extra special touch was that on arrival we realised that the Chilli Bar team had set up an extra special table setting especially for us, which was laid out with tasteful and romantic decoration. This definitely show’s that Chilli Bar cares about the customer, and are willing to do that little bit extra to make your experience even better.

Recently, Chilli Bar announced that a new menu will be coming out soon, one which will also feature Chef Barbe’s award winning dish – a Mini Lamb Medallion with Hoisin Ginger Sauce and Red Wine jus garnished with Coconut Risotto with coconut milk and mushroom. 

This is in line with the new management’s tactic – that of regularly changing the menu to offer their loyal customers a fresh variety of dishes, taking them on a taste adventure as time unfolds. So if you haven’t had a chance to try some of the tantalising dishes off their current menu, I suggest you make a plan while there is still time left!
Having spoken to the newly appointed manager Ms. Brigitte Ponthin extensively on some of her ideas, I can attest that there are some great changes that the team will be implementing in the near future – changes that are guaranteed to further enhance your Chilli Bar experience. These include special theme nights, as well as bringing in a Sunday brunch offering, among others.
Day or night, Chill Bar offers one of the most breathtaking views available on Mahé, with a panoramic vista that reveals the Eden, St. Anne, Long, Moyenne and Cerf islands as they rest in the tranquil turquoise waters of the St. Anne Marine Park. On A clear day you can even see all the way to Praslin, including all the islands that surround it. 
So whether it’s a romantic dinner for two, a gathering among friends or a sunny lunch time affair on their garden terrace, Chilli Bar and Restaurant is a great place to share a meal and make fresh memories set in the sensational surrounds of Seychelles’ scenery.

{ This article, by Niki Gower, was originally published (in part) in the TODAY in Seychelles Newspaper on the 18.01.2013 (www.today.sc), and also appears on the travel blog www.seychellesliving.com. All photos copyright www.nikigowerphoto.com    email: niki@silverspoonmedia.biz }

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