Festive and feasting season is officially in full swing. The perfect weather for al frescos, brunches, and cocktail evenings, there’s no dearth of going out starting October through December. As you gear up for Christmas and New Year’s Eve, here are all the new restaurants and menus to try in Delhi this month.
Taking the prize for being a firecracker this Diwali is The Kimono Club. It created a buzz unseen by restaurants in years, a completely justified one. By restaurateur Ashish Dev Kapur, the space has been designed by noted Adman Freddy Birdy, and the menu’s conceptualised by Chef Vikramjit Roy. The chef’s expertise, Asian food, is displayed in all its glory on the extensive menu. While we spoke of the opening here, today we talk in detail about the food.
For avo lovers, the Avocado Carpaccio is non-negotiable, do try this. Wagarashi Prawns with wasabi emulsion and almonds have a crisp batter coating leading to succulent prawns. The Chunky Tuna Tartar is a must try, but if you don’t relish tuna, then tread carefully with this raw fish dish. The Cucumber Garlic & Chilli and Spinach with Sesame serve as the perfect side dishes to your order. From the dim sums, Pork Xiaolongbao and Morning Glory & Water chestnut are the ones to pick. Definitely order the Ginger & Mushroom Fried Rice with your mains, we liked the stir-fried Tenderloin with Broccoli—the juicy, tender meat spiced just right. The Vegan Salted Caramel tart is even more decadent than it looks, and the Aereated Tofu Cheesecake is a surprise winner. Wash it down with the Reframe cocktail, or the delectable Silvermoon Tea if you like it hot.
Back on the home turf is Chef Sujan Sarkar. This time introducing a winter menu at Rooh. In his signature style, Sarkar uses western techniques to play with Indian flavours. So, expect Sarson da saag with polenta bread and Nolen cream, which fills oyu with nostalgia if you grew up on the dish. Tomato & Burrata with Heirloom tomato and Persimmon Khatta is the parantha-achaar-dahi combo you never knew you’d have, and in the good way. The Mushroom Doughnut is a must-have. Ending the meal with their all-milk tasting dessert is a must for all the dairy fans out there.
Another new addition are the fermented beverages. From chai to spiced apple, milk whey to blackberries, you wouldn’t want to give these a miss.
The city’s hotspot for fun Asian food is out with another gem. After their dim sum menu, now they’ve come out with a sushi menu, and you cannot not love it. The only ones to do Nigaki in India–a mix of nigri and maki–an open sushi, a bed of sticky rice placed on toasted seaweed, with filling and a topping. The Valentine Roll has a high spice factor ideal for the Indian palate, and is as interesting to look at. The Dragon Roll with prawn tempura is delectable, as is the Crispy Vegetable Maki. If looking to experiment, do try the Sushi Pizza, topped with cherry tomatoes, it’s an interesting take on the dish. And of course, the Smoked Avocado is a no-brainer for all avocado aficionados.
The Leela Palace
One of Delhi’s most iconic hotels has had a F&B overhaul, and its one you need to take note of. Dharmen Makawana has come on board as the new Executive Chef, and brings his global experience to the table. Having worked with Nikko, The Four Seasons, The Oberoi, and The Leela; across Australia, Middle East, South East Asia, and India previously, he knows well how to tap into each patronship’s tastes. He’s joined by Rishi Mehra, the new Director of F&B, and together they seek to inculcate traditional knowledge with millennial cool with the culinary offerings. From chocolate tarts with edible flowers, polenta with a side of quinoa basket, and Instagram-worthy salad plates, you have a lot to look forward to here.
After the ITC Kohenur, Hyderabad, the second outpost of Yi Jing in the country has come to Delhi. True to its name, ‘Yi’ and ‘Jing’ meaning ‘to change’ and ‘the classic’, respectively, the cuisine is a contemporary interpretation of Chinese classics. Chef Zheng Wei hails from China and will have a menu focussed on dishes from the Hunan and Sichuan regions, so expect clean, bold flavours and one of the most authentic (and good looking) dumpling in the city.
Chef Suvir Saran returns to India with House of Celeste, a casual Indian restaurant where dishes are interpreted with international techniques. He is the one who brought the first Michelin Star to an Indian restaurant in New York, for Devi. While it was an illness that put a pause in his track almost two years back, he’s fully recovered now and set to take over Delhi NCR. Noshi’s Lahori Chilli-Mince, garlic confit and spinach sourdough flatbread, and gilafi apricot mutton seekh are the kind of dishes you’ll find here. Vist Gurgaon’s latest, 32nd Avenue, to experience it yourself.
The modern Indian bar has brought Chef Ruchira Hoon on board to head the kitchen. And the brand-new menu means extensive sections, from bar bites to small plates, sharing platters to large plates—you’ve got it all. The dishes too are regional, inspired from different corners of India, and correspond to the cocktails. If you’re looking for local, seasonal, and indigenous on your table, this one has to be tried.
Olive’s casual all-day café & bar in Gurgaon, Olly has an all-new menu for the season. Pandering to all the comfort food indulgences and trends, they’ve got the likes of ramen, tacos, gyozas, French toast, risottos, healthy bowls, and such. Our favourite from the menu is the Iced Nutells Mocha with roasted marshmallows.
All images: Courtesy restaurants