Review of Awadh Food Festival at Kainoosh, New Delhi, Promenade mall, Vasant Kunj

In a nutshell:

Awadhi festival – A memorable evening spent in a strikingly beautiful & romantic Restaurant having one of the best sophisticated versions of Awadhi food I have ever had. While describing this dinner, the expression ‘melt in the mouth’ will become so common that I will actually be comparing them with other foods like cheesecake, cream & ripe juicy mangoes!!!!

Restaurant homepage – See Menu, Contact details & pics gallery : Kainoosh

View of another wall

Short Description: If u r reading this in a hurry:

Outstanding attention to detail of serving staff, The Manager comes & discusses the menu with you & exchanges notes on the food – They reminded me of old world personalized Hospitality that is hardly seen any more.

The Mutton Seekh Kebab was so soft that the well trained serving staff could not land even one out of the six pieces in full shape & size – Sophisticated, masaledar, flavorful & deliciously drooling good. Mutton Biryani was actually & proverbially ‘melt in the mouth’. Last came Nihari – a spicy slow cooked mutton preparation where the meat tenderizes beyond expectations – the gravy was so good that we finished all of about 250 ml of it!!!! For desserts came the Shahi Tukra – terrific.

lattice work look-alike detail near the entrance

A must try – You just have to work out more next week to burn the extra calories off.

Detailed Description – If u have the time to enjoy reading the details:

The restaurant is owned by Celebrity Chef Marut Sikka & it has an outstanding ambience like his other restaurant – ‘Magique’ in Garden of Five Senses. The walls bear intricate designs that are inspired by Traditional Indian lattice work but have a contemporary touch to them. The restaurant is full of dark mirrors all around, dimmed lights & a glowing red background on one of the walls – overall making it a very romantic place. Only drawback if at all, for a fine dining place, is that the next table is a bit too close for comfort.

The Chef was Iliyas Qureshi who is a relative of the Celebrity Chef Imtiaz Qureshi.

The serving staff was so attentive (without at all hovering over us) that they were serving the kababs one by one!!! As soon as we would finish one, they would appear from the darkness & serve another one. Same with refilling of water etc.

The texture & softness of the ‘melt in the mouth’ Mutton sheikh kabab can be compared to a freshly made Cheesecake that has not yet been refrigerated. The mutton & the spices mingle so well that all you get is a unique drooling good taste & flavor.

The Mutton Biryani had long independent strands of rice which would melt inside the mouth – the process starts even before the teeth get into full fledged action. The mutton & rice are slow cooked with the spices & hence the flavors get intertwined with each other. Needless to say there is a lot of what felt like pure desi ghee in this & honestly that also contributes a lot to the success of this dish. I think its not a good idea to shy away from this dish (after hearing the ghee part) as u will be depriving ur taste buds from something great……. And u r not having this everyday anyway.

The Nihari gravy was a thick brown gravy with remains of pounded masalas at the bottom – It was served with garnishes of browned fried onions, fine juliennes of ginger, thin slices of green chilli, chopped coriander leaves. Marvelous – I lack words to describe it – We polished off the full gravy to the last drop. The meat was tenderized to such an extent that the texture was somewhat like a soft juicy ripe mango without fibers!!!! Over all – Finger licking good. The Nihari was served with a Indian bread called Taftan – soft & slightly fluffy inside & semi crispy on the top – mildly sweet but overall salty…… very unique & nice – went well with the Nihari.

The dessert was Shahi Tukra – Two round pieces of specially made thin bread topped with saffron syrup & one the best Rabri I have ever had. It was sweet & also salty, garnished with thinly sliced pistachios & almonds. The description of this dish in the menu card said that it also had a layer of ‘pineapple & ginger preserve’ – so we were expecting a twist but but we could not taste any of these. However, overall, with or without the preserves, the dessert was super cool.

Overall – An evening to remember for long.

Revisited the restaurant during Diwali. Loved the galawati kababs……………succulent, melt in the mouth,  immensely flavorful, superbly tasty ………………… lickilicious.

galawati kababs

For desserts we tried the pineapple phirni. Very very nice phirni , the pineapple was not very obvious, was not overbearing but made its presence felt thru tiny chunks of real fruit. Very nice indeed.

Dinner for 2 – Rs. 4000

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