Review: Flick a Dish Cafe, New Delhi

Having stayed away from home in a different city for almost 4 years, I know that nothing can take away the feeling of missing Home cooked food. As a matter of fact, eating out is just never as good and given the crazy lifestyle we all lead, cooking dinner each day seems like very difficult task, so we end up avoiding doing so. Keeping this concept of ‘Ghar ka Khana’ in mind we have a new cosy cafe, called Flick a dish.

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The cafe looks like someones living room, with red walls and curios across the walls, vintage table clothes, antique teapots and old Bollywood movie posters. A little off the main Ring road in Delhi, the idea behind this cafe is to satiate all those desires for home cooked food. Most dishes have kept authentic flavours in mind, but there are a few experimental dishes like Omelette curry. We wanted to have a simple meal, so besides the omelette we tried the Paneer Mumtaz and Chicken Korma along with Tawa roti. But even most other dishes like Chicken Pakora, Baked mushroom in white sauce, Malai Kofta, Mutton cutlets and mutton chops looked quite delicious, a must try for next time and looked right out of our grandmothers kitchen. IMG_6347

The restaurant is run by Mrs Jyoti Mathur, the author of ‘My Cooking Recipe book for Special Children’, who believes in making every meal a memorable experience. With a very simple menu, the experience is definitely something I would recommend you go for if you are craving a simple no fuss meal in what could be your grandmothers living room.    

Name: Flick A Dish Cafe
Address: A-66, Dayanand Colony, Lajpat Nagar-4, New Delhi – 110024
Contact: 011-26472292-93, 9810115058
Timings: 12 noon till 11pm
Meal for two: Rs 800

Review: DIVA Spiced, New Delhi

DIVA is a chain of fine dining restaurants in India. A brainchild of Chef Ritu Dalmia, each restaurant is famous for its own unique style and menu. A new offing from the same team is Diva Spiced. Situated at Meherchand market, it has taken the space of the old Chez Nini, ‘DIVA Spiced’ is an all-day dinning café offering Modern Asian Cuisine. Reflecting Ritu’s signature style of fresh and wholesome ingredients, the café introduces a menu which is a culmination of flavours, spices and innovations from the South East Asian belt. As Staying true to her classic style, a definite splash of European technique and presentation is evident in the cuisine.

DIVA Spiced_Ground_floor

DIVA Spiced is a 70 cover café spread with a ground and first floor seating. Keeping up with the DIVA legacy, Spiced has a warm and a cozy ambiance, but unlike other Asian cuisine venues it has its own take on decor.The interiors of the cafe have been designed by Anita Dalmia with a combination of vintage and contemporary style. The wallpaper is quite quirky with images of Asian women, Asian motifs and sightings while the chairs and furniture have an industrial appeal. Keeping Asian minimalism in mind the look is overall quite subtle with a play of bright colours. The style is very cafe like while the food is Ritu Dalmia’s take on Asian cuisine.

DIVA Spiced_1stFloor

Not for the weak-hearted or for people who do not like experimenting, the menu is a culmination of a lot of innovations, ranging from steamed crystal dumplings to grilled, fried and baked dishes. Some of signature dishes include tapas dishes like Panko Crusted Arancine filled with corn & chili jam, fried Zucchini flower stuffed with Tofu and Feta, Pork belly skewers with spicy yuzu Lemon dressing. For the mains there is a large variety like Goan Prawn Curry simmered in kokum and coconut served with ginger rice, stuffed baby eggplant in a whipped fennel sauce, Miso Marinade Salmon with soba noodles etc. For a sweet ending there are the regular DIVA desserts and a few special ones for Spiced such as a Spiced Mess- Lemon Grass Meringue with mascarpone cream and berry compote and the special black pepper infused chocolate fondant served with basil ice cream!

Address: 79-80, Meharchand Market (Ground & First Floor)
Contact no: 011 49051837
Meal for 2: Rs. 2200/- (without Alcohol)

Review: Chew Pan Asian cafe, New Delhi

It is a pleasant surprise and joy to see bright and quirky interiors in an Asian restaurant, namely Chew Pan Asian cafe,  which is such a contrast from the usual sombre and zen interiors usually associated with Asian restaurants. But the decor is just the start as the food is equally delightful and unique. Launched in January 2014, Chew Pan Asian is all about experimentation with Pan Asian cuisine. The menu boasts of Chinese , Japanese , Thai and the Indonesian Cuisine and also boasts of an open kitchen as well as a live Teppanyaki grill.

Chew Pan Asian Cafe, www.stylecity.in

Spread over 2500 sq.ft. area the interiors of the restaurant are vibrant yet comforting. Walls adorned with the eye-catching black and white Aztec-patterned tiles have been carefully contrasted with Dholpur stone. Chew is a quirky, hip and vibrant restaurant. The furniture is a mix blend of booth sofa sitting, swing seats and turquoise blue chairs that make the dining experience at Chew super comfortable and fun! Asian inspirations within the space come in the form of carefully hand-picked ceramic plates and posters that adorn the walls and the elongated spice rack that features spices from Asia! My style pick was definitely the swing chairs which had been anchored to the floor, but as cool as they looked they also looked a bit uncomfortable, but then style before comfort I say!I also loved the wall with one liners, that included lines like “All you need is love, but also a little chocolate”, those pretty much made my day.

Chew Pan Asian Cafe, www.stylecity.in

Chew Pan Asian cafe, www.stylecity.in

The menu much like the decor of the place is quirky and fun. It is appealing and makes one want to actually read the menu without it seeming like an ordeal. For food, we asked the chef to get us small portions so we could try the various dishes on the menu. We started with the chew special house salad, which unlike what is expect from Asian dishes was actually not very sweet but quite fresh and light. We wanted to avoid Japanese dishes as it seems recently all we have eaten is Japanese food, so we stuck to other asian dishes. Of course the highlight was the various dumplings where they have something called crystal dumplings which i have never eaten before, but am glad I did as they were lighter than regular dumplings and we tried almost all on the menu. For mains we had Stir friend prawns and Chicken meat teriyaki with some steamed rice and some braised vegetables. We were very happy with both the service as well as the quality of our food. We ended with some Tiramisu and finger-licking chocolate molten cake. I would absolutely go back and have already recommended the venue to various people. Do try it for yourself!

Address: First Floor, M16, Outer Circle, Connaught Place, New Delhi
Phone: 011 41516164
Price: Rs.2,000 for two

Review: Hungry Monkey, New Delhi

The New York styled loft ambiance of Hungry Monkey; bare brick walls, concrete floors, the MS installations and the elegant wooden interiors come together in perfect synchrony to create an intriguing industrial feel. The creative typography of quotes on the walls, crafted using carefully chosen fonts are a perfect match to the stylish vibe of the restaurant. Already curious? Well, ‘curiosity is the beginning of adventure‘, is exactly what the walls of The Hungry Monkey tell you.With a faint old school meets new age magnetism, numerous little elements like encyclopaedias stacked on shelves, a vintage hour glass, Edison light bulbs and the rich brown of the wood everywhere bring to life these very stories.The Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.inThe Flying Brunch, Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.in

Inspired by sunny California, The Hungry Monkey introduces the city to ‘California cuisine’, which many may not be well-versed with, but worth a try. An out of the box offering, the restaurant brings you a rendition of varied dishes from the European culture with a unique twist of fusion. Even the “Flying Brunch” is a step away from the usual. After you pick your salad from the display, you get small quantity main dishes delivered to your table and you can pick and choose the ones you want to have or repeat. The Hungry Monkey offers an eclectic menu which focuses on a global palate, through a surprising fusion of flavours combined with fresh produce from organic farms like ‘Farmlove’, a pioneer in organic food in the capital. Dig into the Cold Spinach Gomae or relish the signature Bang-Bang Chicken Rolls. For the adventurous souls, the Expresso Pan Fried Chicken made with a light coffee sauce or the Asian Honey and Soy braised Pork Ribs served with Kimchi on the side are the perfect indulgent picks from the menu. While the Smoked Salmon Carpaccio is a succulent fusion of flavours, the White Chocolate Parfait with almond and vanilla filo pastry cigar along with Coconut French Toast leaves a lasting impression. The Flying Brunch, Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.in

The bar’s hexagonal chemical bond inspired display itself has been designed personally by the owners who have left no stone unturned to bring you an exciting array of drinks. Always innovative in its ways, The Hungry Monkey serves its signature cocktails, the Old-Fashioned and the Manhattan, classic as well as smoked. The bar here easily boasts of a selection of delightful and many a times ‘difficult to spot in this city’ liquor.  Apart from popular modern cocktails, be assured to also come across beautifully infused renditions of the classics.

Eat | Drink | Play
Address – B 6/6 DDA Market, opposite Deer Park, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi
Contact No. – 011 46049801, +91 9810788196
Meal for 2 – Rs. 2000 ++
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/hungrymonkeydelhi

Review: Amreli, New Delhi

If you are an avid food lover or even if a stylish ambience is your thing, Amreli the new offing at New Delhi’s Diplomat hotel is just the venue for you to try out. A cross between an upmarket London diner and a classic bistro, Amreli offers seamless dining experience, with faultless service and exquisite multi-sensory food experience.

Amreli, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

Situated in the embassy area of Delhi, Diplomat hotel is a serene property hidden away from the chaos of the city and this is the reason it makes for a perfect venue for a chic fine-dining eatery, attracting a crowd which knows its food and desires the perfect ambience for a business meeting, a lazy sunday brunch or a romantic night out. Amreli suits all these purposes and fills in the gap of a fine-dining restaurant in that area. Conceptualised by Sidhant Lamba, Amreli aims at offering palate pleasers without the extravagant commitment of time and money. His aesthetic influences are as broad as his travels. Through Amreli he is introducing a signature style to the city,“Amreli will have its own culinary leanings, and it will exhibit a laser-like focus on professionalism and impeccable service. With Amreli, we will be serving a multi-concept menu that focuses on freshness and ingredient quality,” says Sidhant.

Amreli, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

Amreli, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

Amreli’s décor is modelled on that of an upmarket London diner, complete with chessboard floor, mirrors and gorgeous artworks. Some of the pieces have also been curated by Sidhant to go with the ambience, trust me if you love art, you would want to buy a few pieces for your collection (Not sure if they are for sale!). The alfresco area, in a quiet courtyard has a lovely lush green and perky seating to enhance your enjoyment of the exquisite fare, while the indoor dining room is a mix of casual yet sophisticated seating with casual perches at the bar. The menu has been done by Chef Sabyasachi Gorai, a well-known name among India’s dining public. Popularly known as Chef Saby, he doesn’t walk the route of a traditional chef, but that’s arguably what brought him such fame. With his high-end techniques and culinary curiosity, he has given a diverse menu to Amreli. The all-day breakfast menu is also strong, in fact it is the highlight of the menu with the dishes done spectacularly well. The beautiful display of each dish is a threat or a promise—depending on whether you would want to wear your skin-tight jeans again. For breakfast you can choose from, Homemade Granola, French Toast, Mushroom on Toast, Egg Appam, Eggs Florentine, Keema Eggs Benedict.You can also expect aromatic dishes jewelled with nuts, herbs and dried fruits, plus hearty peasant-style stews, spiced roasted meats and seafood. The careful spicing and flashes of creativity means the menu is peppered with classic dishes (Sole Meen Moilee, a fish curry from the coast, The Humble Plate, dal and vegetables of the day and Kerala Mutton Stew, melt-in-mouth mutton chunks in a creamy coconut stew) to please conservative diners, as well as more inspired interpretations of well-known recipes. So whether you are cutting on carbs or you are after that plate of comfort food in the company of a few friends, or a celebration that requires plenty of bubbles or probably at lunchtime for peace and quiet; dinner for buzz, Amreli is the place you should try out for sure!

Address: 9, Sardar Patel Marg, Diplomatic enclave
Phone: 011 46050200
Pricing: Average Meal for two approx.: Rs. 1400-1600 (without alcohol)

Review: Moonshine Cafe and Bar, New Delhi

The term ‘Moonshine’, can be traced back to the 1920s American concept of distilling liquor at night “by the light of the moon” during the Prohibition era, is the name of the city’s new café and bar. MoonshineCafé & Bar boasts of a rustic, industrial aesthetic with a modern interpretation of a new-age speakeasy; with vintage décor and an artistic interpretation of Chicago’s skyline on the walls. The bar is modelled after the iconic 20s American watering holes and does a good representation of the same in todays modern day and age.Moonshine Cafe &  Bar, www.stylecity.in

The Bar seamlessly divides its vast expanse into various sections which play different genres of music to suit your mood for the evening. While electronic, house, classic rock and popular jazz tunes are a regular on the cafe’s playlist,the bar also boasts of having live bands and Sufi Performances! But music is just one of the things that make it a perfect night at Moonshine. They also serve a cocktail menu with a twist and scintillating renditions of classics. There is a choice of tipple for every occasion –the ‘Moonshine Specials’ on the menu have all the ingredients for a great night. I tried the LIIT which is yet to be launched in the official menu. It has blue curasao and apparently a secret ingredient which made me feel I am having a “chuski”

Moonshine Cafe & Bar 2

Moonshine Cafe &  Bar, www.stylecity.in

And if you are inquisitive about the food by now, expect to be pleasantly surprised as you re-discover your some old time classics and favourites with the menu. We tried the “Galouti Kebab”, “Beer Battered Fish” and “Moonshine Sliders”. While the Sliders and fish were quite tasty the Galouti Kebabs were out of this world and something I would recommend everyone to go and try. We then had a “Peri Peri chicken pizza” for the main course. It was the perfect choice for a perfect night. If you are around Hauz Khas and want to be taken back to an older time, do go by Moonshine Cafe and Bar. They even have Gentleman’s night every Tuesday, where the ladies pay while the men get free drinks.During the day, the property transforms into a relaxed venue with a terrace over-looking the greenery and ruins of Hauz Khas, leaving behind any trace of the previous night. Whether it is a night of revelry or a day of charm and serenity that you seek, at Moonshine Café & Bar, you’ll always find a corner just right for you.

Address: 30, Second Floor, Hauz Khas Village New Delhi, DL 110016
Phone: 098 71 555718

Beauty Ritual: The Imperial Salon, New Delhi

Ritual: Elixir Ultime 24 Carats,90 minutes, Rs.3,200++
Location: The Imperial Salon, New Delhi

The Imperial Hotel, which in my opinion is the epitome of luxury, now introduces a large variety of luxurious skin and hair treatments at the Imperial Salon. These include Kerastase Ladies Hair and Nail treatments, Signature facials with Natura Bisse Products, Bridal Preparations, Nair Art and Nail Care along with OPI, Special treatments for male grooming needs and a retail shop for all Homecare products.

Ladies Salon entrance, Imperial Salon, www.stylecity.in

My love for the Imperial Hotel, its Old world charm and exclusive services is very well known, which is why I never turn down an invite from them and am never disappointed. This time was no different as I tried out their Elixir Ultime 24 Carats ritual. The idea behind this treatment is to provide shine, nourishment, protection and resistance for the hair. This ritual combines a customization of treatments and massage techniques that best suit you to make you feel relaxed and beautify your hair.

Elixir Ultime 24 Carats,Imperial Salon, www.stylecity.in Elixir Ultime 24 Carats,Imperial Salon, www.stylecity.in

The treatment begins with a Personalized Hair and Scalp Analysis with a Diagnostic Camera. This is to profile the thickness of hair shaft, sebum levels in hair, scalp sensitivity, any dandruff and hair loss. My results were that I have healthy roots but dry hair thanks to over use of chemicals and hence my treatment will focus more on my hair strands than the roots. The “Exilr Ultime” which was recommended for my hair starts with a shampoo and followed by the application of a Hair Booster and a beautifying oil masque, Oleo. Oleo – Complexe is precious luxury oil that contains Maize Oil for Nourishment, Pracaxi Oil for strengthening, Argan Oil for protection and Camellia Oil for smoothening. This is applied section by section across the hair and followed by a gentle massage.The in- depth massage has 7 steps that concentrate on enhancing hair growth, stimulating the scalp and encouraging circulating that provides long term hair beautification and also de stressing your crown chakra. These massage techniques which incorporates pressure point massage techniques, occipital work, push and pull and raking techniques from India, Bali and Thailand create a deep relaxation. After the oil massage, mask application ritual the hair is rinsed and a small amount of Elixir Ultime is run through the hair before a smoothing blow dry and style. And your hair looks a feels like a million bucks.

Review: He said She said, Mumbai

Sprawling across 13,500 square feet, He Said She Said has a huge open-air, tarp-covered section along with an air-conditioned bar, a fine dining restaurant and a terrace bar perfect for sun-downers and gigs. Also considering the fact that this was the day Germany was playing the United States to determine if the US goes through the next round of the FIFA world cup you could see a whole lot of football enthusiasts had converged at this bar making the environment electric. The main area, apart from a giant screen airing the 9:30pm WC games, has a beer pong table, a British phone booth exclusively for selfies and enough space to indulge in various drinking games leading to free drinks (6 shots in 6 seconds anyone??).

He said She said, Mumbai,www.stylecity.in

As we were coming to terms with the sheer size of this bar, Kuber, who runs the establishment, was kind enough to give us a tour of the place. With going from a place that is 1/5th its size in Delhi to opening this establishment, He Said She Said has hit the nail on its head when it comes to accommodating everyone in this city who likes a night out, with brilliant and comfortable décor that is very complimenting of its ambiance and vibe.Vishal Guptaa very young and talented interior designer and artist has done the concept and design of He Said She Said. On the Ground level there are 2 Outdoor sections with Not-That-Loud Music where people can talk and lounge. It sports a grass turf, high chairs, sofas, benches with a very relaxed atmosphere. Inside there is an section specifically labelled “Loud Music” where you can dance beside the DJ console, but there is only a clear glass division between the indoor and outdoor section thereby utilizing the openness and space. These areas have colorful digital art in form of Characters as well as a Cityscape that adds to the distinctiveness and a flowing fountain in the outdoor section that has miniature character installations on it (fishing, sitting and even urinating!). The digital art is very difficult to mount in walls without printing or tracing but HS3 got the extremely talented Bhuppi (from Delhi) to hand-paint all of them to precision. Moving up the ladder, the place metamorphoses itself to the land of Greek Gods. White Washed Hand plastered walls and Retro artifacts welcome you to the Fine Dining area with even softer music levels. Treat your taste buds to exclusive European delicacies in this section. Finally, the top Level has a covered Terrace with a small stage that can accommodate small gigs, screenings, etc.

He said She said, Mumbai, www.stylecity.in

He said She said, Mumbai,www.stylecity.in

Before we got stuck into the food we had the privilege of tasting some of the many shots the bar had on offer, it was a shame I could not try all as I would have definitely had a memory lapse. He Said She Said has on offer over 40 shots divided into ‘layered’, ‘chocolatey/creamy’, ‘fruity’, ‘spicy’, ‘balls of steel’, ‘it’s different’, ‘ice-cream’ and ‘Mumbai special’ options, all priced between Rs120 to Rs349. Something that is ideal in case one wants to get a quick buzz before heading out to party.Our captain recommended the following sequence of shots and it was the greatest combination of pick-me-up-I-am-ready-to-start-this-party-shot I have ever had. We started with a ‘Red Hot Chilli Pepper’, which came with a green chilly, that one bites into before taking the shot and keeping it in your mouth for 30 seconds before gulping it down. One chases this shot with the ‘Chai Maila’ a concoction of whiskey and caramel soothing the spiciness of the previous shot. Needless to say I was attuned to what effect those shots were meant to have and they did not disappoint. Another fun things to try at He Said She Said apart from their different shots is their FotoFunbooth where patrons enter a Old Retro Telephone booth, sign in into Facebook, get their picture clicked with various props and accessories and instantly upload it, tagging the friends who they want. It is a unique fun experience which will make your memories last forever with friend. Now for the food,we ordered a wide variety of starters and bar food to go along with our beers and game of football. The pepper and olive cheesy parcels are highly recommended by the bar and they live up to their billing. A great combination of melted mozzarella with some pepper and olives infused together before slightly fried and coated to keep them together. This was the perfect accompaniment to our beers. Apart from this the quintessential Okra Kur Kure and garlic bread helped keep the beers down and games interesting.From the fine dining menu we received a sampling of the Stuffed Chicken on a bed of mushroom risotto along with a portion of BBQ chicken wings. We washed these down with a few more shots, which included the Aampanna shot (an old favourite) and the chocolaty Coco Chanel (comes with an actual Kit-Kat bar). Each shooter is so unique and wonderfully presented that you cannot help but try a few.

He said She said,Mumbai, www.stylecity.in

He said She said,www.stylecity.in He said She said, www.stylecity.in

To sum up all I can say is He Said She Said in Andheri quite literally provides everything one could ask for at a night out. One can start with some relaxed beers in the main area, move to the louder air-conditioned bar, head up for some fine food at the restaurant and end the night enjoying a gig on the terrace. Coming from Delhi and complaining about the lack of space Mumbai has to offer, trust me such quality establishments are diamonds in a coalmine. Amongst the plethora of identical bars/pubs spread out over Colaba, Bandra, Juhu and Andheri finally there is a place that is quite appropriately ‘for everyone’.
Address: Remi Biz Court, Lane behind Fun Republic, Off Link Road, Veera Desai Road
Phone:+91 9867515082
Price: Approx Rs.2,000 for two
Rating: Butter Chicken
Rating Scale: Tinda – 0, Idli – 1, Salad – 2, Butter Chicken – 3, Kakori Kebabs – 4, Grandmother’s cooking – 5

Review: EN, Japanese Fine Dining, New Delhi

Living in Delhi, one begins to take for granted its exquisiteness, the beautiful parks and stunning monuments. This is why sometimes it takes dining at a place like ‘EN’, with its view of the majestic Qutub Minar to makes you appreciate and fall in love with the beauty of Delhi all over again. ‘En’ is a holy word, it means Synchronicity; a blessed relationship, an invisible connection of fate and destiny. Hence, merging various styles, essence, ingredients & preparation techniques from around the world with the spirit of Japan, the highly specialized chefs at En bring to you a superb reinterpretation of Contemporary Japanese Cuisine.

EN- Japanese Cuisine, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

EN- Japanese Cuisine, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

Spread over three levels and divided into various areas, the design thought behind En highlights the harmonious coexistence of two strong cultures, Japanese & Indian. The century old royal heritage Haveli that is home to En has been recreated to harmoniously match the theme of a Japanese restaurant. And, rather than conform to the clichéd ornamental look like most oriental restaurants, the space has a minimalist appearance that flaunts timeless style and elegance. The interior layout has been done intelligently with seating that can be converted smoothly into private dining rooms that could accommodate 6, 8, 12 and 20. Complete with a Sushi bar and a bar, the fine dining area is radiant with a combination of natural and artificial light, bringing to life a composition that boasts of an unassuming earth-tone interior elements set off by clean lines. ‘aka’ – Red (believed to be the color of the Sun), the sacred color of Japan, finds its way into the furnishings gracing the space.  The luxurious placement of bay windows throughout the fine dine space allow diners unparalleled views of the surrounding green belt and the ubiquitous Qutab Minar. While the interior fine-dine space at En exudes ample charm, the terraces, aptly named ‘The Tableu’ sets a tone of its own bringing visitors to the piece de resistance of the venue. The view on all four terraces is nothing short of breathtaking, with the Qutub Minar as the main highlight. In fact, keeping this ambiance in mind restaurant had its first Sufi night on 26th April, where the atmosphere was mesmerising and left all those there wanting more!

EN, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

EN- Japanese Cuisine, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

Dating back to the Peking man and his use of fire and the resulting invention of ‘modern day cuisine’ as we know it, Contemporary Japanese Cuisine is the result of noteworthy journey that began somewhere in the 8th century in history of The Three Kingdoms, arriving majestically at our up-to-date palates. According to Raji Sandhar, owner EN, “Our idea is to create a new benchmark in the arena of Japanese Fine dining throughout India.  It requires the infusion of un-matched cuisine served in the relevant ambiance. En aims to provide the Capital’s gastronomic globetrotters with a taste of what authentic Japanese cuisine is truly about.”

EN- Japanese Cuisine, New Delhi, www.stylecity.in

Japanese food is one of the healthiest in the world and still remains the most distinct cuisines in the world. A few aspects that set Japanese cuisine apart from other cuisines is it’s emphasis on using quality ingredients, unique seasoning its impeccable presentation.The menu at EN bears witness of the rich epicurean roots of Japan. Though Japan is rich in culture and has a variety of different styles and cuisines, ‘En’ brings to you that culture of fine dining and authentic cuisine that’s savored only in Tokyo. We decided to go in for the set menu, so as to get a taste of the entire range of dishes served at the restaurant. We began with a dish that included Bean with Black sesame with Nanbanzuke and Prawn balls. The black sesame was out of this world, I can use it as a seasoning on almost anything I want to eat. We then had Kakiage and Tempura, which are actually similar dishes but I preferred Kakiage and now with this new knowledge I know next time to ask for Kakiage instead of Tempura. We then tried a mouth-watering assemblage of award winning Sushi & Sashimi, and a ‘so soft it melts in your mouth’ braised pork belly. We then tried ‘Chawanmushi’ or egg custard, an authentic Japanese dish the only thing on the menu I could not eat, as I think that is a developed taste and will take a long time for me to get there. Of course this was followed with an addition of Rolls and Maki & Teppen-Yaki and an exhaustive rendering of Noodle & Rice dishes… all washed down with a cup of signature Houjicha, Japanese Black tea and Sorbet for Dessert. All in all, I can’t wait to go back, sip my wine while I enjoy the view of the stunning Qutub Minar and enjoy an exquisite meal.

Address:Ambawatta One, 5/1 Kalkadas marg, New Delhi- 30
Phone:  011-26646471
Price: Meal for two approx.: Rs.4,500 (plus taxes) minus alcohol

Review: Guppy by ai, New Delhi

There are two myths about Japanese cuisine in Delhi, first that it is all about raw sea food and second that the decor has to be streamlined and simple. Guppy by ai breaks both the myths and introduces us to a different side to Japanese cuisine in the most charming and memorable way. Starting with the decor, the 2200 sq. feet space designed by Anshu Arora has been divided into three areas, the restaurant, the bar and courtyard. Each area has unique features to recreate a playful wonderland in a modern setting.

Guppy by ai, www.stylecity.in

Every unique element from the solar fired heart shaped tiles to the lighting and fixtures have been customized for Guppy making this one of the quirkiest restaurants I have visited. A manga artist has worked on murals, window art and column figures. There is clever use of Origami (Japanese paper art) and metal to make lights. The bar area from where you enter the restaurant shows an artistic representation of Mickey Mouse behind the counter, while anime inspired upholstery adorns the couches and heart shaped wall paper cover the walls.A feature water body with a stream of metallic Guppies (tropical fish as I discovered) strung together like a stream of a river make for an unusual water installation.The charming courtyard which was the highlight of Guppy for me has a anime inspired sculpture, smaller tree light boxes, a huge mural, candle lighting and casual seating centered around a tall Frangipani tree.The dining area focuses on a sushi counter and a big community table with comfortable, casual seating around it.  It has touches of studio designed and custom tailored kimonos on the walls.The area also boasts of two specially sculpted metal lion fish lights and Japanese kokeshi dolls, vintage cameras, old tiffin boxes and more such Japanese memorabilia scouted from antique shops. Of course how can I not mention the polka dot bathroom.We started with some vodka and wasabi based cocktails at the bar recommended by the manager. They were a perfect start to a lovely evening at the end of a harrowing week. As we munched on some edamame and gossiped, the starters started coming to our table and then began one of my most exciting culinary journey’s.

Guppy by ai, www.stylecity.in

Guppy by ai, www.stylecity.in

I who can eat Sushi every meal of every day was actually gorging on everything else Chef Vikram Khatri decided to serve us, not because the Sushi was bad, it was delicious, but everything else had such a unique texture and taste I could not drag myself away. We started with, Chirashi Seafood Salad which is Pickled prawn, tuna, salmon, crab and baby greens in goma-ae dressing and finished every last morsel. We then moved on to Guppy Signature Pork Belly which is Slow braised pork belly, glazed with soy honey, served with mustard miso sauce and actually melts in your mouth. We then moved on to the gluten free, amazing texture in your mouth Exotic Mushroom Gyoza and Prawn Gyoza which were equally delish before trying the Sushi’s. The Sushi assortment included the Prawn Tempura roll and Spicy Tuna roll which we found the best but also the accompaniments supported the dish really well; the ginger was slightly sweetened and the wasabi was not too sharp. For mains we had Grilled Jumbo Prawns and Guppy Signature Black Cod with some Garlic Fried Rice. Of course, even though we were stuffed to the brim no Japanese meal can be complete without dessert, in our case was Red velvet cake, which was absolutely out of the world.

Honestly it is a beautiful restaurant, with the food priced and presented really well. You could taste the spicy, the tangy, and the exotic all in one bite. Most dishes, from mains to the condiments are made from scratch here. More than anything, I loved the ambience and the friendly nature of the staff. It is definitely a place I will be visiting regularly and would recommend the same to all of you.

Address– 28, Main Market, Lodhi Colony, New Delhi
Lunch for two With alcohol 2000 ++
Dinner  for two With alcohol 3000 ++