In a nutshell:
Day 1 & Day 2: Simplicity, back to basics (Roots), a great idea, superb execution, unbelievable prices & excellent food are words that come to my mind while describing Roots café. Day 3 : Quite dissappointing & average food
Address & other details: Roots
Meal for 2: Rs. 200 onwards
Cuisine Type: Vegetarian & eggs
Short Description – In case u r in a hurry:
It was a Saturday morning & we were upto our customary ‘Earn ur breakfast’ – Walked 4km & then renewed our energy at Roots Cafe situated in Renewable Energy park, leisure valley, Gurgaon.
For many of us in Gurgaon, central air-conditioning, glass house buildings & high rises have become a part of existence. Lots of us have lost touch with the way we used to be in our childhood – simple fans / air coolers. Roots Café reconnects us to our roots with its basic but tastefully done décor in which almost no man-made materials have been used, the simplicity of its menu, partially open-air structure & the huge air coolers.
The structure, as mentioned above, is of wood, bamboo & other natural materials. The roof is thatched. The furniture is all wood. The coasters are natural & so is the beautifully made cover of the menu card & the ‘cheque’ folder.
As mentioned above, there is no A/C but even in the heat of June the two mammoth non noisy air-coolers do a good job of keeping the place cool.
Unlike in other places where the waiting staff gets the order, here u r supposed to write ur choice of food on a little ‘order slip’. Really liked this concept as that reduces chances of wrong ordering / wrong order interpretations.
The waiting staff is very non-intrusive but well behaved & nice. Their product (the food that they serve) knowledge is good as well.
The urge & passion to serve tasty & good food (even though it is not gourmet food) is really commendable.
Detailed Description – In case u have the time to njoy readin:
We ordered Poha to start with. Yes, u heard it right – We ordered poha at a restaurant. It was a ‘Simple but superb poha & tasted as good as it looked. The poha was non oily, had good amount of robust peanuts sprinkled in, juliennes of carrot & onions & was just about perfect overall. It was absurdly simple & unbelievably good to taste. This is like very good home cooked ‘taste & feel’ instead of the commercial kind.
The poha was served with an outstanding green chutney that we polished off as if it did not ever exist on the plate!!!!
Post this we had Moong daal chilla. For the uninitiated, it is a kind of a thick Dosa made with daal instead of rice – North Indian food. This was also perfect to taste in about every sense – non oily as compared to the Bikanervala / Haldiram’s but that did not compromise with the taste.
Next we tried Bread toast with cheese, scrambled eggs & tomatoes. The bread was superb – not the ones usually available in the market. The cheese was just right to give the flavor & texture but not overwhelming like in most fast food @ USA.
We also had some good Bel ka sharbat & aam panna & those were ‘as good as it can get’.
They also serve vegetarian Nepali thali for lunch & dinners in addition to other meals. Look forward to trying those in future.
To conclude, Superb food, simple, tasty, neat & clean & professional service (that is quite rare in Gurgaon) – fully loaded @Rs 317 (US$6) for 2 people!!!!!
Day 2: Tried the Nepali vegetarian platter after hearing many good things about it. Found it to be good but not great. I wud say 3/5.
Day 3 (jan 2013): Had almost the same items as Day 1 – Dramatic fall in quality – chilla was burnt to the extent that it tasted bitter. we pointed out & it was changed.The new one was not that good either.
The poha that I super loved in day 1 was very ordinary in day 3. The peanuts were burnt & overall there was tendency of the whole thing being a bit smoky due to burning.
We tried Spinach omelet – It was just an ordinary omelet with small strips of spinach in it that made no impact. Never to try that again.