Monday, March 14, 2011

The Aman

A friend and I had a fantastic Thai meal at the Aman multicuisine restaurant last week. The restaurant is really elegant and quiet and private, which is what makes Aman a truly magnificent hotel in Delhi. Surprisingly and encouragingly the food prices are nothing like the room prices, which are upwards of $500/night.

We started with a 400/- Tom Kha soup and shared a 600/- thai curry. We also ordered fried rice and jasmine rice. All in all the food was excellent. The service impeccable. While the menu at the Aman is limited,  I highly recommend it over Spice Route at the Imperial hotel, especially if you are looking for a change.

After the meal, we walked around the quiet confines of the hotel and had a nice discussion. All in all a surprisingly affordable and memorable evening and in an extremely expensive hotel.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Coriander leaf, Gurgaon - Won't go here again.

Vatika Triangle, Sushant lok-I, Block-A, MG Road, Gurgaon 122002
Ph: 0124-5062121,
email: Corianderleaf at vatika group dot com <all together>

We at this expensive, hot but really pretty restaurant on the 6th of June 2008. There were 3 of us. We were looking forward to this meal. We got a reasonably nice table at 9PM on Friday night but I suggest you reserve in advance. The place gets crowded and they mostly have small 4 tops.

As soon as I sat down I was accosted by a Finlandia sales guy who wanted us to buy Finlandia cocktails so that we could enter a lucky draw. The guy was ok.. so we bought 2 cocktails and a beer.

We ordered starters, which were all good. I guess we were really hungry. We had a veg. tandoori combo, which was good. The paneer tikka was wonderfully flavored and melt in your mouth soft. The veg seekh was also good. We then ordered the main course. We had very a standard fare, Dal Makhani, Murgh tawa masala and Paneer Makhani.

This is where things suddenly went downhill.

The wait for the meal was incredibly long. I even went to the restroom in the main vatika building - since they dont have a toilet inside. Even after that we had to wait atleast 25 minutes to get the food after our table was cleared of the starters.

All the main course dishes were too spicy. The garlic nan was outrageously expensive at Rs 65. Even the standard roti was for 30 rupees. I wonder what they put in it to make it so expensive. The service was poor. We were not served in time. We had to ask for waiter buy shouting for attention.

The place is really noisy and hot. The noise is because of all the glass walls and not because of the music. The AC does not seem to cool down the restaurant enough for Delhi's hot summers. The place was really expensive as well. Our total bill was 2790/- for the 3 of us. What really irritated me was the 220 rupees service charge. Why should I be forced to pay 220 bucks. Further, I dont think this money would go to the server.

Can you really imagine a restaurant being ethical enough to give "all" of the service charge to the waiter serving the meal? This is something I need to investigate further.

Here is the bill breakup:

Finlandia small - 598
Beer - Kingfisher - 185
Tandoori combo veg. - 295
Paneer Makhani - 335!
Dal Makhani - 240
Murgh Tawa masala - 345 (only 10 rs more than the paneer)
Garlic Naan - 45
Plan Naan - 110 (55 each)
Tandoori roti - 30
Sub total - 2203
Service Charge - 220.30!
VAT Alcohol - 172
VAT Food - 195.25
Total - 2790

I dont think we are going here again.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Skywok, Khan Market

Date: 8th April 2007

Location: Khan Market, at the corner of the same lane as the bigger Big Chill restaurant behind McDonalds.

Skywok is a new pan asian restaurant in Khan Market. The food here is good and a little bit expensive. Our party of four ate here. We did not have any alcohol. We ordered one starter two soups and 4 main course dishes and our bill was 2000/-. The food was good. I recommend the Thai chicken soup and the chicken with sweet basil. The pad thai was also really tasty.

We also ordered a rice dumpling with chicken but did not like it very much. The presentation of all the dishes are good. The appetizer came to us in a 4 small cups - one for each.

Although the place is relatively expensive, the ambience is good. The service however would be better. The problem is that people keep running about and do not seem to pay enough attention to you. I would not go here for a quite dinner with the family. The place seems designed for business travelers and company paid dinners.

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Thursday, October 26, 2006

The Coffee Shop - Maiden's Hotel Delhi

The wife and I wanted to have a nice breakfast together. So, we dropped off the kid to school and left the other one at home and went out looking for a good breakfast place.

One of the oldest hotels in Delhi, the Oberoi Maidens hotel in civil lines, Delhi was our choice of the day. We thought we'll go and in and check out the menu. If we liked it we'll stay and eat, if not, we'll walk away and probably have the breakfast buffet at the yellow brick road at the Ambassador Hotel, close to Golf Links.

We were floored by the unexpectedly beautiful garden and outdoor seating arrangement at the Maidens coffee shop. The breakfast buffet at Rs. 375/person was not a great value for money. The wife did not want to stuff herself so she decided to go for a simple toasted sandwich, which should have been substantially cheaper than the buffet. I, of course, had the buffet.

The breads were bad. They had stale Croissants and no rolls. The white and brown bread was the standard brittannia bread we have at home everyday. The utthapam was ok. The omlette overcooked. The dosa was stuffed to the brim with potatoes and had way too much curry putta (leaves). They probably put a whole plant in there. Anyhow, it is was good to to see a 103 year old banyan tree while having breakfast. The service was slow, but we didn't care as the surroundings were so nice and quiet.

The hotel is also 103 years old. It was established in 1903. I dont know if we will go back there again. It was not a good value for money.

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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

1911 - The Imperial Hotel

Our party of 8 had a fun dinner at 1911 at the Imperial. Although, we wanted to go to Spice Route one person in our party was wearing shorts and people in shorts are not allowed in side the Spice Route. So, we went to 1911 and ordered from both the menus. This turned out to be a good thing as the 1911 menu was really limited.

We ordered lots of beer (Cobra brand, which is sold primarily in the UK) and martinis (Vodka). We ordered way too much food and the total bill came to about 16000/-. The highlight of the meal were the Thai curries from Spice Route and the Sandwich which we took to go. The servings were generous and the food was yummy.

The tandoori murgh was huge. I have never had a bigger chicken in my life. The legs were as long as my lower arm. Maybe it was not chicken, after all it could always be another bird. The fish and chips had lots of fish and lots of chips. It was fun to sit outside, facing the beautifully maintained garden at the begginning of a new winter in Delhi. I'll go back their again and eat a sandwich, maybe not on my money though.

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Monday, September 04, 2006

Market Cafe, Khan Market

So, after reading a review from Sabina Sehgal Saikia, we decided to visit the Market Cafe in Khan Market. The cafe is located right opposite Khan Chacha's excellent tikka/Romali wrap shop. You can also say that the cafe located in the back lane behind the older Big Chill cafe.

The Cafe was cheery and had wi-fi connectivity but the food was horrible and horribly over priced. We ordered Veggie Fajitas (Rs 180/- I think) and a grilled vegable sandwich (Rs. 165). Thats all our budget would allow.

After waiting forever, we were served the smallest sandwich in the world. We had asked for a focaccia panini bread and the whole sandwich was probably no longer than my hand and no wider than two of my thickest fingers. The filling did not go to the edges and the sandwich was not dressed properly. The side of fries, served with the sandwich contained 5 fries, maybe 7. The side salad was basically grated carrots and I cant remember what else it had. While the sandwhich was eatable, I could not get over the fact that they were charging 165/- + taxes. I compared this to the 90/- grilled veg. sandwich and Angels in my kitchen or the 80/- open faced sandwiches at Big Chill and felt cheated.

The Fajitas were worse. We sent them back.

They had wrapped up some stuff in two torilla like wraps and put a lot of spicy tomota sauce/salsa on it. The sour cream, served with the fajitas was like sour curd, or something else but not like sour cream at all. Further, the vegetables in the fajita did not come sizzling, like they would at any other place - Bennigans, Saket or TGIF, anywhere. It was unedible.

We quickly paid our bill Rs 190/- no tips and left. We ate at Khan chaha, right outside. We had 2 chicken romali wraps, 1 paneer tikka wrap and a coke. this was the best wraps we've had in a while. At a Rs 60/wrap. This is a great bargain in Khan Market.

We then went for coffee and a belgian chocolate shake at the Big Chill. I give 3 months to the market cafe. They will either shape up or ship out.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Angels in my Kitchen

Angels in my Kitchen


We have eaten at this recent defence colony establishment 3 times now and at all times the quality of the food and what was included with a sandwich was inconsistent but tasty.


There sandwich and choice of breads are great. The french loaf and focaccia was great. So were the olives and the potato wedges. They were as good as the ones I had at the 360 at the Oberoi.


The owner's turned out to be friends of ours and that improved the level of service and our first time there was great. We thought we had finally found a cheaper and more delicious alternative to Big Chill.


However, such optimism was short lived. Our 2nd visit and 3rd got progressively worse. once they were out of Potato wedges, another time they gave us someone ele's sandwich. I did like that they took good care of kids. When my daughter wanted to have some pasta, they were kind enough to give her an exceptionally large portion of Penne for free. She had a ball and so did we.


I still recommend this restaurant, just give them sometime to iron out the kinks, their heart is in the right place and the angels, they are in their kitchen.