Tag Archives: continental

56 Ristorante Italiano (Gurgaon) 7/10

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A chilly wintry afternoon in Gurgaon, a quick meeting with a client and Italian food in a well-lit, airy restaurant- what else does one want? Upon returning from a meeting somewhere on Golf Course Road, fellow foodie Raghav spotted this little gem of a place tucked away in the midst of the offices.

The entire restaurant is built into this atrium, offering plenty of light and space. As we walked in, the place was deserted. One can only assume one of three reasons why a restaurant would be deserted at lunchtime- one, its newly opened; two, the food is terrible; or three, the food is overpriced. Surprisingly, this was none of the three.

The place serves alcohol, as will be evidenced by the huge bar at the far end of the restaurant. Of course, being in the middle of a workday, its best to stay away from alcohol. As we settled in, we were informed of a set menu for Rs 499 in which we could choose a starter, a main course and a beverage. Not being that hungry, we decided upon main courses only.

Raghav’s prawn risotto was wonderfully light and garnished with a largish prawn sitting right on top. None of that nasty seafood pungency, yet the flavours of the prawn came through strongly. However, I thought it could do with some more salt. Mine was slightly heavier- having ordered the tenderloin pasta. The beef was well cooked and blended nicely with the tomato- mushroom sauce. But really, the high point was the toasted garlic bread. Perhaps we were really hungry, but we seriously could NOT get enough of that bread. Freshly toasted, warm, with just the right amount of garlic and topped off with their olive paste- we would have had that all day long.

Top Tips

  • The chef looks Italian- always a good sign
  • The service is fairly quick, even taking into account that fact that the restaurant was practically empty
  • Portions are HUGE!
Ratings/ Quick Facts Scale (on 10)/ Remarks
Ambience 8
Ease of access 4
Service 7
Quality of food 8
Value for money 7
Would I go back there? Totally! I need to go meet that client more often!
Meal for two Rs 1000 (without alcohol)
Serves alcohol Yes
Credit cards Accepted
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Lodi- The Garden Restaurant (Lodhi Road) 8/10

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Note: this review has been sponsored by DhoomBox.

Just beyond the entrance to Lodhi Garden is this blink-and-miss entrance to what is possibly one of the most beautiful restaurants in Delhi. As you walk through the path, you notice tables out in the open amidst the bushes and the trees, with heaters and soft lighting. Since December can get fairly cold in Delhi, I opted to sit inside instead.

The manager, Vijendra was kind enough to sit with me and explain the concept of Lodhi restaurant. They serve European cuisine, primarily- just my kinda place! Some of their vegetables are sourced from their organic farms- one in Gurgaon, and one in Delhi. The clientele is mostly expat- given the close proximity to Nizamuddin, Jorbagh, Golf Links and the Lodhi Institutional Area. Which means that its not going to be easy on the pocket. Be prepared to shell out premium moolah for a premium setting.

As part of the set menu, I chose a coriander lamb skewer, a tomato and celery broth, garlic chicken morsels with risotto and their house special- a chocoloate mousse.

Things started off badly. I’m fairly sensitive to mutton and lamb in terms of their odours. The skewers came from a lamb or goat that had either been spayed/neutered or was fairly old. You’ll notice a pungent smell in certain kinds of meat, particularly in low spice mutton/ lamb/ beef curries- I got the same smell in the skewers. Not that I’m complaining- a lot of people actually relish the smell. I don’t. the skewers also needed a little more in it- just flavoured with coriander gives it a bland, one-dimensional taste.

But the soup turned it around for me. Warm, filling, yet light it actually reminded me of the soups my grandmother would make for me when I was sick. Couldn’t have asked for better. But what truly blew me away was the chicken. If you’ve cooked chicken, you’ll know that there’s a fine line between partly cooked and overdone. If it’s not cooked enough, it’ll taste awful (and will be unhygienic too). Overdone and it’ll be dry and fibrous. This one held the line throughout. Every bite was sheer joy- juicy, succulent and bursting with flavour. The tomato risotto accompanying the chicken played the brilliant sidekick to what was the perfectly cooked chicken.

But then again, the chocolate mousse had issues. Slightly grainy as opposed to the smoothness one would expect from a mousse- I thought I could taste the flour and butter (or atleast some kind of fat). Wasn’t really a put off- but after that chicken, it couldn’t match up to that standard.

Top Tips

  • Extensive wine cellar- ask the manager for his recommendations
  • Few other places in Delhi (such as Thai High and Magique) match up to their ambience
  • Don’t park on the main road. Instead, there’s parking a few metres ahead of the road. Or you could park at the Lodhi garden parking spot
  • Perfect for a late lunch after a walk in Lodhi garden
Ratings/ Quick Facts Scale (on 10)/ Remarks
Ambience 9
Ease of access 7
Service 8
Quality of food 8
Value for money 4
Would I go back there? As often as it suits my wallet!
Meal for two Rs 2000 (without alcohol)
Serves alcohol Yes
Credit cards Accepted