Posts Tagged ‘gurgaon weekend’

An expensive flavour of Mughals

December 15, 2009 2 comments

We generally eat out on weekends. After a week’s drudgery at the office, the only weekend succour available for Gurgaon residents who doesn’t want to stay at home is exploration of shopping malls and sampling the gazillion restaurants dotting the landscape. But, a weekend food spree could easily drain your pocket, so the dilemma is to find a place that provides the best wallet-to-palate balance.

This weekend, our exploit lead us to “Flavor of Mughals”, the Mughlai cuisine and Lounge Bar at Central Arcade, opposite Sahara Mall. Apart from an old Punjabi couple, the restaurant was empty. The staff, dressed in pale grey Mughal style silk kurtas ushered us to a comfortable corner table. It was late afternoon and we were quite hungry. The unwieldy long wooden menu tablets featured an ample bouquet of Masahari(Non-Vegetarian) and Shakahari(Vegetarian) fare.

Our choice of starter was Bhutta Seekh Kebab (grilled skewer of assorted vegetables and corn). For main course we chose Chooza-E-Changezi (boneless tender chicken in a thick tomato gravy cooked in Tawa) and Makai Hara Bagh (dense aromatic mixture of spinach, corn, onions and green chilly) to go with plain Naan.

Soon immaculate white plates were laid out and water was poured into clean glasses. Before long, succulent, tasty Kebabs made the entrance followed by main course served in heavy steel bowls. The Makai Hara Bagh was exceptional, delicately flavoured, mouth watering and went well with the crisp Naan. Chicken Changezi was ordinary. Portions were sizeable, sufficient for three. Finger bowls of fragrant rose water over, we asked for the Cheque.

Initial estimates went for a toss as we glared at the bill. The 12.5% percent VAT (officially sanctioned rip off) was augmented with a 10% service charge. The bill came to a whopping Rs.1262.00 out of which Rs.230.00 had nothing to do with food.

Bhutta Seekh Kebab (Four 7″ pieces) – Rs.220.00
Chooza-E-Changezi – Rs.325.00
Makai Hara Bagh – Rs.260.00
Plain Naan – Rs.45.00 each

Apart from à la carte, the restaurant also offered several buffet options like unlimited starters + Biriyani for Rs.555.00, unlimited drinks for an additional Rs.299.00 etc. VAT and 10% service taxes were extra.

Blue chairs, brown tables, heavy steel cutlery, pleasant ambience, deferential waiters, prompt service, hot food – a good overall dining experience. But the relative high rates upset the yin-yang balance of eating out which is the only reason why this restaurant, to me, does not merit a revisit.

Food Quality – 8/10
Service – 7/10
Cleanliness – 9/10
Price – 6/10
Verdict: Not value for money

Flavor of Mughals
120-121-122-123, Central Arcade, DLF Phase-II
Opp. Sahara Mall, MG Road, Gurgaon – 122002
Tel: 0124-4290000, Mobile: 9717970000
Total Seating Capacity: 84
Restaurant Menu from Foodiebay available here – Link

Categories: Gastronomique

“Mezzed” up Weekend – Mediterranean Cuisine

December 2, 2009 Leave a comment


Last Saturday we went out shopping for winter ware and landed up at Metropolitan Mall. So, for lunch we decided to check out the food court on the third floor. There were several outlets catering to every taste – South Indian, North Indian, Kashmiri, Indian street food, Chinese, Lebanese, pizza, burgers, roll, you name it. 

After an intense debate, we settled on OZ Express which served a mouth watering menu of the “best of Lebanese, Kashmiri and Italian Cuisine”. We gawked at the pictures of various items on the menu and drooled for a while before ordering vegetarian Mezze Platter and vegetable Stroganoff


The Mezze platter had Hummus, Mutabbal, Tzatziki, Tabbouleh, Falafel, vegetarian Polpetts, Fatayer and Pita bread. Since we were unable to make out which was which, the chef explained each of them before we took away the platter. 

Hummus – Mashed chickpea dip
Mutabbal – Mashed baingan (eggplant) dip a.k.a Babaghanoush
Tzatziki – Yogurt, cucumber, garlic dip
Tabbouleh – Salad dish made of parsley, mint, tomato, onion etc
Falafel – Chickpeas patty
Polpetts – I guess these are marinated carrots and cauliflower, not sure
Fatayer – A kind of samosa
Pita Bread – Round leavened flatbread

We spread various dips and garnished each slice of Pita bread with Tabbouleh before gingerly taking a bite. I liked it best with Tzatziki. Pita bread, Falafel and Fatayer were in duplicates. The quantity was substantial and it took two of us to wipe the platter clean. 

The Stroganoff turned out to be a desi version of the classic Russian dish originally made of beef. This one had sautéed broccoli, carrots, celery, mushroom, bell pepper and chopped onions in a thick creamy yogurt based gravy served with rice and green salad. Finger licking delicious!

Cost for two: Rs.320/-
Vegetarian Mezze Platter – Rs.175 + 12.5% tax
Vegetable Stroganoff  – Rs.110.00 + 12.5% tax

I would definitely recommend Oz Express. The counter was neat, service was cordial and delivery was timely. It was a pleasant dining experience, notwithstanding the clamour of the food court. 

We crowned this glorious meal with yummy double scoops of Coffee-Walnut & Black Currant ice creams from Giani’s. Total Rs. 80.00, a pittance compared to the wallet blasting rates of Baskin Robbins. 

Belly dance, anyone… 

Oz Express
3rd Floor, Food Court,
MGF Metropolitan Mall
Tel – 9810165198

Oz Express Menu from foodie bay is available here: Link

Categories: Gastronomique

Serendipitious delights

October 27, 2009 3 comments

Sometimes the best things in life are discovered entirely by chance. Like yesterday night when we came across this tiny shack near the rear exit of Anzal Plaza in Sector-22, Gurgaon. All of us were in a mood for a quick bite and that was probably why “Vada Pav” caught my eye so quickly. “Vada Pav“, a native of Maharashtra is a rare sight in Gurgaon. So, it was pure ecstasy to find it tucked away in this remote corner of the universe.

We were delirious with anticipation as we approached and immediately spotted the Vada‘s from far away. We rubbed our eyes and pinched each other to make sure this was no mirage. The Vada’s were definitely there for the taking, but Pav, nope, Pav was exhausted. We were heart broken but decided to try the Vada anyway. Soon, steel plates with Vada’s swimming in coconut chutney and red chilly paste were passed around. My god, amazing Vada‘s, authentic Mumbai flavour mouth watering Vada. We nearly exhausted the restaurant’s Vada inventory. My friend in the meantime couldn’t resist a chicken soup which he later claimed to have tasted a bit like Sambar! There were many more alluring items on the menu like chicken lolly pops, varieties of soups and momos. The food was warm and hygienic. The setting was informal; sweet chill of incipient winter was in the air, and steaming Vada‘s melted in our mouth.

The owner was thin, dark and pleasant faced. He was a Shetty from Mangalore. He asked if we were Malayalee’s and as we nodded in a semi trance induced by Vada, he told his story. He had come to Gurgaon, 11 years ago and had never returned to his native town. He could understand Malayalam, but could hardly speak the language, though he had many friends from Kerala. The shack primarily catered to students from nearby colleges and he was doing brisk business. We could see that. Even at this late hour there were a group of students chatting away at a corner over tea and momos. He had plans to expand the set up to cope up with the demand. He was particularly attentive to us. Compared to his, our lives were easy. Yet, he was optimistic and cheerful at the end of the day. Probably he has to wake up at 4 AM and start over.

Our nocturnal adventure was coming to an end. This was another instance of chance triumphing over well laid plans, reinforcing my belief in serendipity. I vowed to be more open to chance and its unexpected delights as we drove away.

Where to find Ashva’s Fast Food

It’s on the lane next to Anzal’s Plaza in Sector – 22, Gurgaon. Shetty can be reached at 9718559669.

Categories: Gastronomique