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.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Spice Route - Imperial Hotel

We had another fantastic meal with Barry on the 13th of March, 2006. On my suggestion, we went to the Spice Route at the Imperial Hotel. The spice route came highly recommended by the Conde Nast Magazine as one of the 10 best restaurants in the world. I think this was slightly over stated. While the food was great, I dont think it could be one of the 10 best restaurants in the world. It could be one of the best in terms of decor but that's about it.

We ordered two bottles of wine
1. Ch√Ęteauneuf du Pape vieux telegraphe 2001 - Rs. 4500/-

Primarily made from Grenache, this 50 Euro wine retailed for close to 80 Euros here. The wine was good and worked well with the spicy food we ordered that night. I remember seeing the Ch√Ęteauneuf du Pape vineyards from the papal palace in Avignon. I'll insert the pictures of the vineyard later.

2. The second bottle we ordered was a spanish red wine. This wine was one of the most tasty wines I have had in my life. It did not go very well with the spicy food on the table but still it was fantastic. The wine was made from cabernet grapes only. It was most likely a Miguel Torres Cabernet that sold for Rs 5500/-

For food, we ordered
Grilled Prawns
Coral Mushrooms
Minced Chicken w/ Sweet Basil
Main Course
Green Curry w/ Chicken and Coral mushrooms
Mixed vegetables in mildy hot sauce
Jasmine Rice
Pad Thai
Two Spring Delights or something like that (Mango & Strawberry sorbets)

The whole meal for 5 set us back by Rs 20,000/-. I was impressed by the wine, the coral mushrooms and the wine glasses. They were about 1 foot tall and really elegant.