Sunday, April 27, 2008

Khandani Rajdhani - Great India Place, Noida

UPDATES (16 Sep 2013) - Khandani Rajdhani is closed now. It has been replaced with Thali Vadi - same setup but different name. Have not tried it yet.


To get over the Nirula's experience, we headed to Great India Place again to celebrate. This time we did advance booking for Pind Baluchi but once again we were not supposed to eat there. Just as we reached there, we found out that it was filled with women kitty parties:) It was like sitting in between firing across the border with tambola numbers flying through our ears. Since, it was just not the setting we would have liked, we decided to move on to Rajdhani restaurant nearby. And, this time it was a good move.

Khandani Rajdhani is a chain of restaurants which offer the traditional thali concept. They offer unlimited thalis with different items each day on a reasonable cost. The decor and ambience is calm and serene here - no frills and no fuss. So, do not expect luxury here but do expect wonderful food. The thalis consists food items mostly from Rajasthan, Gujrat and Maharastra. Just as you settle down the server will come with warm water to wash your hands - tradition style. And then you are served with welcome drink - in our case it was skimmed milk and aampanna. Then came the starters (Farsan) - White Dhokla and Aloo Tikki. Next in line was main course - a lavish spread of nearly 2-3 chutneys, 5-6 dishes, 2-3 types of breads, and 2 types of rice. So we had, potatoes with gravy, dal, Rajasthani kadi, bhindi rajasthani style and more in main course dishes. While there were green chutney, imli chutney and mirchi chutney along with roasted papads as accompli. Apart from this they had Rajasthan speciality - Dal, Batti and Churma. In the sweet dish, they offer Aamras, Aam Rasmalai and Moong Dal Halwa.

Overall, a truly wonderful experience - all traditional home style food. Meal for two would cost less than Rs.400 here.

Contact Info:-
Rajdhani - Noida
The Great India Place Mall,
3rd Floor,
Sector 38A Noida - 201301
Ph:- 91-9311759990, 91-0120-6488933/4

They have branches all over the country. Have a look here to find out if they are open near you.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Nirula's, Great India Place

Last week, colleagues in my office decided to celebrate an occasion with eating out. So, we decided to go to newly opened Pind Balluchi at Great India Place. Once we reached to this place, we were told there is around half-an-hour waiting due to some kitty parties going on. Dejected, we went to TGI Friday’s but discovered probably world’s only TGIF serving no liqueur leading us to once again looking for a new place to eat. Running out of options, we zeroed-in at Nirula’s. They have this so called multi-cuisine restaurant.
I have read somewhere that sometimes you take wrong turn in life and regret it later on. Going to Nirula’s on that day was surely such a wrong turn. It was the worst food, worst service, worst staff and worst value-for-money I have ever seen in my life. I have to Nirula’s other outlets in the past like the CP one or the one at Noida Sector-2, the food has been just about okay – nor too bad neither something to go ga-ga over. But the food at this place is worst one can make and even charge heavily for it.
Since we were in a group of 12 people, we nearly tried at least one item from each of their sections. We tried assorted non-veg kebabs, non-vegetarian kebab platter with dal / roti, chicken fillet burger, chicken chop, fried chicken, fried fish, non-vegetarian thali, mutton sausage pizza and non-vegetarian pizza - and nearly each one was equally bad. Only good thing was a starter called samosa sticks. I do not how one can consistently make each dish as bad as previous one – but it was surely done by the cook at this place. Also, the staff was aloof – not well trained and the place was full of flies all around. Water was warm, cold drink machine not working, food was served pretty slow and air conditioner was not working.
I hope somebody from Nirula’s upper management reads this blog or my comments with the local management at this place and do something about it. It is like killing a brand – if they continuously keep serving such stuff customer after customer.
Never ever go to this place.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Swagath Restaurant

Swagath Restaurant is a famous chain of restaurants in NCR which specializes in Indian Mughlai food and Coastal food. It is surely the best restaurant in the coastal food category in Delhi and NCR. The main restaurant is at Defence Colony with branches at Malviya Nagar and Noida. It is a non-vegetarian foodies paradise - nearly any non-veg item from their menu is worth ordering. Vegetarian food is also quite good - although it is more famous for its non-vegetarian offerings.

For the starters, try Fish Tikka Ajwani (Boneless Fish Marinated with Yoghurt, Ginger, Garlic and Gram Flour; flavoured with Ajwain cooked in Tandoor), Mutton Seekh Kebab (Minced Lamb Marinated with Ginger , Garlic Paste with touch of red chilly, finished in clay oven) or any Fish Fry. For the main course try Chicken Stew, traditional Butter Chicken (some of the critics do rate it as one of the best butter chicken in Delhi) or Chicken Masala Chettinad. Try Mutton Biryani or Subz Biryani - they are really wonderfully cooked. Since I am not a great admirer of coastal food, I have not tries their coastal food options more but they are surely regarded as the best in Delhi.

They also offer Chinese food but I will suggest to just skip it since this is not what they are best at. The cost is little bit high but it is worth every buck you spend. Food for two would cost around 900 bucks (without drinks). They do home delivery as well and their portions for home delivery are quite large.

Contact Info:-
14, Defence Colony Market
New Delhi
Ph:- +91-11-24337538

C-8, Malviya Nagar
New Delhi - 17
Ph:- +91-11-51830622, 51830613, 51830640, 51830649

J-57, Sector - 18,
Noida (U.P.)
Ph:- +91-120-2516066, 4240619

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Lemon Twist

Lemon Twist, at Sector 63 Noida, is a new restaurant from people behind Lotus Pond, Delhi and Bamboo Shoots, Noida. The restaurant is a variation from their older tradition Chinese cuisine restaurants - here the focus is more on fusion cuisine. The restaurant is situated in two floors - the lower one is a tradition restaurant setting while the upper one is a open terrace setting along with a grill. They are promoting the place as a Oriental Wok and Grill place. Since I visited the place for a lunch, I was seated in the lower part of it. The decor is good - place feels comfortable. The staff is surely not up to the mark - they seems less knowledgeable about Chinese food (which is a bad thing if the place is termed as Oriental Wok place).

We ordered two starters - Vegetable dim sum (which they called SiuMai - although they were no way close to the SiuMai we are fond of) and Crispy Spinach With Red Peppers. The second one was good but the dim sums were just okay. In main course, we went for Exotic Vegetables In Lemon Chilli Sauce, Shitake Mushroom In Fried Sesame Rice along with American Chopsuey. I think this was after a long time that I had order Chopsuey at some place - and I was again disappointed with it. The main course and rice were good although the rice quality could have been better. Overall, we left with a mixed feeling towards the food - sometime good and sometime not-so-good.

Although they are terming their place as the one where a "portion" of salad, soup, starter or main course is sufficient just for one, it is still enough for two people in most cases. The rates are not high, when compared to Bamboo Shoot or Lotus Pond. But then the food is also not that good. In my opinion, worth an occasional visit only. The location surely makes it an easy access for people working in Sector 55/56/58/62/63 and other nearby sectors.

Contact Info:-
Lemon Twist
H-1A/16, Sector 63
Ph:- (0120)4217500

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sampan @ Crowne Plaza Surya

Sampan is the Chinese cuisine restaurant at Crowne Plaza Surya. The best thing about Sampan is its location. It is situated on the top floor and offers a panoramic view of the city specially a marvelous view of the DND road with its curves and elevation properly visible. Sampan, meaning a flat bottomed boat in Chinese, has good décor and Chinese artifacts. Apart from these two good things, place is not much worth to write about.

The food is not that good as other Chinese joints in the city. And the cost is too high for the place and the food. Food for two will cost around 1600 to 2000 bucks. Crowne Plaza Surya is not regarded as a good hotel in Delhi and Sampan also lives to this reputation. There is nothing spectacular about food here. It serves Szechwan and Cantonese varieties mostly. One can try Crispy Spinach and Corn for the starters. While in main course, try Chicken in Sichuan Sauce or Vegetables in Garlic sauce variants. One can also go for their buffet which happens daily on weekdays in the lunch timings (from 12:30 to 2:30 or something of that sort). It is cheaper and would let you try various things without worrying about shooting your bill upward.

Nothing great for me expect the views it offers.

Contact Info:-
Crowne Plaza Surya
New Friends Colony
New Delhi – 65
Ph:- 26835070, 41672222

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Jade, The Claridges

Jade (earlier known as Jade Garden) is the oriental cuisine restaurant at The Claridges in New Delhi. The setting is good - on the ground floor of the hotel along a grove of bamboos. The atmosphere in professional and the staff is courteous.
For the food part, it offers Chinese and Far Eastern Oriental cuisine. It may not be the best Chinese in the town but it is surely the one where you can enjoy the kind of Chinese food which gave birth to the Chinese cuisine culture in India. Do not let go of the complimentary fried prawn munchers served along with food - they are delicious. For starters, go for Shredded Spinach - a rather crispy item - it is truly wonderful. In the main course go for Stir Fried Chinese Greens or Bean curd with Mushroom. Their quantity is just enough - so order just the right amount for your guests.
It also offers an exclusive dim sum menu which includes vegetarian and non-vegetarian dim sums plus sweet dim sums as well. They have a large variety of dim sum - around 35 to choose from. Apart from this, they also offer executive lunch on weekdays - wonderful stuff at a cost - but worth a shot if you feel it. I would suggest to go à la carte here since other options are quite costly. But Jade is surely worth a visit (or maybe more).
Contact Info:-
The Claridges
12, Aurangzeb Road,
New Delhi - 110011
Phone:- 23010211

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Brahmputra Complex, Sector 29, Noida

This is road-side eating at its best - the evening food stalls at the Brahmputra Complex, Sector 29, Noida is just fabulous. The food at these around 15 stalls offers great variety while being not heavy on your pocket. You have to eat standing up or in your car but you will not regret coming here just for that.

In vegetarian food, there are momos, soups, chaat, aloo-tikki, steamed corn and bhelpuri. The aloo-tikkis are crisp and good on your tongue. Bhelpuri is also spicy and you would surely ask for second helping. In non-vegetarian food, the variety increases a lot. Numerous stalls offer different tikkas, seekh kebabs, boti kebabs, shammi kebabs, chicken/mutton korma along with roomali roti and chicken/mutton biryanis. The tikkas and seekh kebabs are specially worth trying along with mutton korma. But there is a warning here - some of the stalls serve very spicy food, so be ready to deal with it. And then there are two good juice shops if you feel to beat that heat on your tongue or in your throat. Plus, you can always try some sweets from Evergreen later on to complete your dinner.

Surely, worth a place for good enough food at reasonable price - provided you are not too keen on ambience.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


Maamouchee is a snazzy restaurant offering different cuisines. It is situated in the Centerstage Mall, Sector 18, Noida. The setting is quite subtle - which is the best part about it. You can just be lazy on its lounge sitting and take your time while ordering your drinks and food. The view of the busy market as seen from its large glass walls is quite good. The place is generally not crowded - so you would be able to spend quality time here as your own pace.

They offer Indian, Lebanese & European cuisine. The focus is on the fusion cuisine as is the trend now-a-days. Do try non-vegetarian platter (the hot seekh kebabs are good), mezze platter (hot - since cold one is not as tempting) or the grilled fish. Not extraordinary but still not bad either.

Worth an occasional visit but that too with your friends - just drink and talk - do not think about the food anymore. They offer seperate party area on fifth floor for groups. They also offer 2+1 scheme in happy hours or 20 percent discount (for corporates) - whatever you like.

Contact Info:-
4th and 5th Floor
Centerstage Mall
Sector 18
Phone:- (0120)4312241, 2517037