Jakoi (1 Sardar Patel Marg, Assam Bhawan,Crossing of Kautilya Marg & Sardar Patel Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi)

 In a nutshell:

Exceeded expectations when it came to eating superb subtle Assamese food in the land of strong flavors & taste – Delhi.

Near the entrance of the Restaurant

Address & other details: Jakoi

Meal for 2: Rs. 700 onwards

traditional setting in open air sitting area

Cuisine Type: Vegetarian & Nonvegetarian

Short Description – In case u r in a hurry:

The Assam Bhawan Canteen is managed by Jakoi, a restaurant Chain in Assam. The eatery has a nice & warm traditional look & feel to it. U can choose to sit indoors or outdoors. The outdoor seating is quite interesting conceptually – large hand painted metal trunks form a table & people sit around them on cane chairs.

hand painted metal trunks serve as tables.

Traditional bamboo products like fishing hats, fishing nets (jakoi) etc are displayed all over. In the indoor section, there are displays of traditional Mekhla Cloth, silk worms & a lot of interesting things.

Traditional fishing instrument Jakoi & other things on display

The menu card looks like a Jakoi. There are options of set menus as well as ala carte. Vegetarian & Nonvegetarian options are available. Assamese names of all dishes were printed. On the table there was a small ‘special menu’ which was just Assamese words written in English Script……….

Menu card that looks like Jakoi (2D of course)

……….& that is what sparked off a debate. We had heard about a pepper called Bhut Jalokia which is hot but in a different way than Chilly. So we wanted to have a preparation with that. In our conversation with the staff, neither of us understood each other & we got what we did not order. After a tiny debate, the Manager came in & changed the dish to what we wanted. This could have been avoided if the additional menu wud also have had an English Translation.

beautiful traditional decoration inside

Food is subtle & not ‘on the face’. Flavors r enjoyable.  We loved the thali so much last time that we again went for the thali. We were pleasantly surprised to find that all of the dishes in the set menu were good.

parampara thali at Jakoi

Detailed Description – In case u have the time to enjoy reading:

For three of us we ordered two ‘Parampara Thalis’ & two alacarte dishes – Chicken with Bhut Jalokia & Fish cooked in Bamboo hollow.

The Thali started with a welcome drink was served hot in a shot glass. It had an enjoyable tangy taste & flavor and wasvery refreshing.

hot refreshing welcome drink served in a shot glass

The traditional starter Khar was served – It had a tasty thick base of lentils & a bitter aftertaste. Historically natural ingredients were used to get to this taste but nowadays sodium bicarbonate is used as a shortcut.

khar – part of Parampara thali at Jakoi

Pitika (mashed potatoes seasoned with onions & coriander leaves) was superb. It’s a simple mashed potato but with little add ons, it tasted so good – inspite of we having something similar at home.

Yellow daal was very simple & subtle. This excellent dish was essentially boiled daal with tadka of coriander & onions.

Along with these dishes we were served Kahudi dry – a combination of mustard paste, mustard oil & tamarind. We were also served Kharoli dry – a combination of mustard paste, mustard oil, sodium bicarbonate. I liked the Kahudi better.

Kahudi dry, Kharoli Dry & Kharisa

Kharisa (Grated bamboo shoot fermented in water seasoned with mustard oil & red chillies) had a very interesting taste & flavor to it. Loved it.

Another simple dish of Gram chana & potato was so subtle & tasty.

gram & aloo subzi

Steamed fish – fish cooked over charcoal, marinated in mustard paste wrapped in leaves. Similar to paturi that is eaten in Bengal but the flavor of the mustard gravy was different. Very enjoyable.

Loved the Fish Tenga – a Tangy Fish curry (jhol) with vegetables & lemon juice. Very different jhol than what the Bengalis have. Too good. Rohu was the fish used for this curry.

Chicken with Bhut Jalokia looked like any other ordinary chicken curry but taste was pleasantly different. It had a hot effect (of Bhut Jalokia) to it, different & nice flavors & very soft chicken pieces. This was served along with a nice Assamese fried rice made of small grains of aromatic rice.

Chicken with Bhut Jalokia

The Duck curry had dark green masala gravy. It had a Good subtle taste & flavor. Biggest pleasant surprise was the super soft meat – almost never have I had such soft meat in an Indian Duck curry.

Fish in Bamboo hollow looked fabulous & exciting. When it came to taste, it was good but not great till I added the Kharisa. On adding the Kharisa, the taste changed for the better. Liked it but unlikely to reorder next time.

fish in Bamboo hollow

For Dessert we were served Crunchy Assamese Puffed Rice, liquid palm jaggery & thick cream in little bowls. We mixed all of that & ate. Simple, outstanding.

Assamese traditional dessert

At last came paan leaves, masala & supari.

Paan & mouthfreshners

After having the thali on a few occassions, we revisited to try the ala carte.

In ala carte we tried all kinds of courses from starters to main course.

For starter, we had Shiuley phuler bor – what is called bora in bengali & vada in southern part of India. Shiuley phul is actually a flower – the waiting staff said it was jasmine. I had no idea people ate it as well.

shuili fuler bor

It had a slightly crispy outer layer & soft within & The flowers were coated in besan & deep fried. These marble ball sized bors were subtle in both taste & flavor. Tasted good with a dark greenchutney that was served.

Papaya Khar was a super simple looking, super simple dish that tasted superb. It had a lentil base, was predominantly boiled, had huge chunks of cooked raw papaya & was garnished with raw mustard oil. Wow. The addition of the mustard gave a ‘kick’.

papaya khar

Brinjal pithika – basically turned out to be baingan ka bharta. But the difference was that here the brinjal was not mashed like the latter. Chunks of roasted brinjal was deskinned & served with onions, green chilli slices & uncooked mustard oil again. This dish can be had at home also & u really do not need to order it at a restaurant. We did that out of sheer ignorance.

Brinjal pithika

Main course was spicy fish tenga – it was slightly sour, mildly sweet, a bit hot & of course was a salty dish. Full of flavors, this thin fish gravy was really good to taste. Must say that it is very difficult to get such a good taste in such a thin gravy.

spicy fish tenga

At last came the duck curry – dark brown colored thick gravy with grainy texture had quite a strong taste & what was a surprise was the duck pieces – they were succulent beyond expectations.

assamese duck curry

One of the very few duck preparations that I have had other than Peking Duck could retain such softness in a duck meat. Overall, love this place by now. Will revisit few more times to try out the so far new dishes. Look forward to updates.

9 thoughts on “Jakoi (1 Sardar Patel Marg, Assam Bhawan,Crossing of Kautilya Marg & Sardar Patel Marg, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi)

  1. I think what you are doing here is Extraordinary . I have been following your Blog for quite sometime . I always get surprised with these hidden treasures you discover.

  2. I have taken my colleagues after reading this review. They were very apprehensive on the first about it but amazed with the experience. Thanks for sharing this

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