In a line: Overlooking world cuisine with North Indian food as its base.
Cuisine: North Indian with a twist
Price for two: Rs. 1800(approx)
Location: Cyber hub, Gurgaon
Must haves: Ice tea thandai, tandoor grilled broccoli and button mushrooms, chaamp tajdar, haleem khau suey, jalebi churros with malai rabri
Succulent pieces of mutton burrah, spicy morsels of chicken tikka, smokey paneer tikka paired with spicy green chutney, creamy dal makhni or the aromatic biryani, our North Indian food affair boasts of a variety of delicacies that form a part of our family meals, every time we go out for lunch or dinner.
But what if you’re tired of eating the same typical North Indian dishes? That’s when the revamped Punjab Grill will come to rescue with it’s unique take on some good old-fashioned favourites, that will not only excite you with some unusual flavour combinations, but with it’s appearance as well.
With evolving palates, Punjab Grill Tappa, aims to cater to the millennials, who are looking for a departure from the customary Indian meals. The menu is as quirky as the name itself, and comprises of dishes like paneer cigar rolls, non-dairy marinated chicken tikka, 5 grain roti and jalebi churros. It’s just the overall ambiance of the place, which gives off a fine-dining aura, that does not appear to be in tandem with the eclectic offerings of the menu.
We started our Sunday lunch with a watermelon slider and local sprouts chaalats. An infusion of a riot of flavours of the chaat along with the healthy goodness of a salad, this was perfect dish to start our meal on a hot summer day. This was followed by some lime rubbed tawa jumbo prawns, and tandoor grilled broccoli and button mushrooms. While the buttery jumbo prawns tasted great, it was the vegetarian starter, which oddly enough, is what we preferred to demolish first. Spicy button mushrooms paired with crunch of the broccoli, and topped with a trio of chutneys, green, tamarind and beetroot, this is without doubt, a must have.
Another starter that shouldn’t be ignored is the champ taajdar, a spicy lamb chop preparation, the marinade of which had penetrated beautifully in the succulent meat, which was falling off-the-bone.
Before the mains could make their entrance, on recommendation, I ordered myself a glass of their navratra special drink(I didn’t visit them during navratras), Ice tea thandai. Glad I went with the recommendation, because this drink is so good, that it should definitely find a place in the permanent drinks menu.
Accompanied along with an array of contrasting condiments like fried onions, crunchy puffs, mutton raan, mint leaves and ginger, the haleem khau suey draws its inspiration from the Burmese khau suey, and is something that every haleem lover should look forward to. I wish the dish could be served only with the baby cheese naans that come along, as though small, they pack in a lot of flavour punch with the chopped green chillies inside. That does not mean that the rum soaked raisin and palak chur chur naan fell any short of goodness while being paired with this Hyderabadi dish.
While we generally end up ordering biryani, I chose to order the classic gobhi matar tehri. Mildly spiced, fluffy basmati rice with perfectly cooked cauliflower, the dish arrived in a tagine, and paired well with the nutty and fresh, walnut and cucumber raita.
Jalebi churros with malai rabri was my successful escape in desserts. Orange hued churros, crisp on the outside and fluffy on the inside, the jalebi churros were dusted with cinnamon sugar, and came along with a not-so-sweet rabri. This is the perfect dessert for those who don’t like a lot of sweet, but if you’re one who likes a good amount of sweetness in their desserts, then tappa mess should be your pick. This treat in a glass, the tappa mess is like rabri falooda, that consists of layers of burfi, rum soaked fruits, falooda, strawberry crush and is topped with crushed ice and chia seeds.
Confession: Overall, my meal at Punjab Grill Tappa turned out to be a great dining experience. The concept of looking at a world cuisine with North Indian dishes as glasses is certainly worth a try. I really hope that they introduce the ice tea thandai in their menu, because the one that I made at home didn’t turn out to be as good!
Value for money: 4/5