This post is only for breakfast at café lota. To read about Day dining at Café Lota, pls click here
In a nutshell:
A simple yet excellent restaurant that has a calming effect, is starkly different from modern Delhi brick & glass restaurants, serene environment in the morning with few guests on other tables, outstanding food & very good service. In short, I was floored.
Address & other details: Café Lota
Meal for 2: Rs. 500 onwards
Cuisine type : Vegetarian & Nonvegetarian
Disclaimer: All restaurants / eateries reviewed by YUMMRAJ were visited by YUMMRAJ himself & he has paid for the full Bill & tips also. http://www.yummraj.com does not have even one featured / sponsored reviews. YUMMRAJ believes in going to a restaurant in anonymity, as a normal guest, experience everything & give a honest account of the same to you.
I rate all the food items & then give a final overall rating which is a simple average of the individual item ratings. What the ratings stand for: 5 = Excellent, 4 = Very Good, 3 = Good, 2 = Fair, 1 = Disaster.
Short Description – in case u r in a hurry:
In case u hv already read the other post on Day Dining at café Lota, pls skip this section & go straight to detailed description.
The restaurant is located inside The National Crafts Museum – A museum that I might have visited at least 20 times in the last few years & have always found something new, something intriguing about the amazing art forms, handicraft & artefacts from around our country. I have taken all my guests (to Delhi) at least once….
So when I heard from my friend Rashi (she has written the post above this), I was a bit surprised. I had seen a usual café there & it was no great shakes. So YUMMRAJ & lady YUMMRAJJ ended up here after a good bit of prodding by Rashi. That was the first time. During that visit we figured that they have a nice breakfast menu. So we decided to pay another visit to try the breakfast.
The café has a natural set up & that means it is subjected to the vagaries of nature. There r things to beat the weather but those r not perfect. Pls do not go here if u r averse to any bit of weather excesses.
The structure is made of iron which is painted black. But to take away the boring black pillars, they have painted it with floral traditional designs.
One side of the café is the Lota shop. Its walls have been painted / made by artisans from Gujarat.
Furniture is basic but comfortable.
The day menu card is a marvel. It had the names & the description of the food as well. We kept reading some or the other new thing on every page & our conversations wud not stop…. It was quite a task to choose from such a bunch of interesting items. The breakfast menu card was relatively plain Jane.
Though this restaurant is kind of open air & inspite of the fact that it is near the busy street, there is no sound that reaches here from outside…. As tranquil as it can b…..
The servers were very good. They took care. They knew about their food & they added value to the experience.
Detailed Description – In case u have the Time to NJOY reading:
We started our much anticipated breakfast with Paneer chilla.
For the uninitiated, Chilla is a kind of Indian pancake made from besan.
The chilla at was thick, super soft, had good flavour of besan, tiny onion pieces made their presence felt. It had an outstanding texture.
The Chilla was served like a roll with Paneer stuffing within – super soft mashed paneer, with mild flavour of coriander. By far the best chilla I hv had ever. Rate it 4.5/5
The next item we tried was Railway masala omelet. Only someone in his dreams wud have had something as good in an Indian railways…. Unless we r talking about euro rail or something else who decided to serve Indian food as an option.
The omelet was presented like a sandwich with spinach bread on one side and Ladakhi bread on the other. The breads were, as if, toasted with butter on low fire and hence the inner sides were soft and the outer side was super crisp and tasty. In reality the breads were grilled.
The masala omelet was very good but nothing different than the best masala omelet. There was a layer of green chutney and a slice of cheese. Grilling led to the cheese melting and dripping off the sides.
The breads tasted very good on their own. They had a hint of fermented feel to them.
Overall – crisp outer, juicy inside filling, YUMM and beyond words. It takes super calibre to convert humble bread and egg into this. Rate the dish 4.5/5
We also ordered sweet Lassi. It was thick, but drinkable ( we did not need to eat / chew it). The curd had a minor tang to it which was enjoyable. Proportions of sweet , sour and tang was perfect. Loved it. Rate it 4/5.
The third dish that we had was keema paratha. Here we had high hopes from this dish.
The paratha part was generally super soft, had good flavor and tasted good. Wud rate paratha sans filling 4.5/5.
The filling is where we were dissappointed. The mutton was machine pasted & hence it lost its texture. It generally tasted good but there was nothing muttony about it. In good keema parathas I have found juicy uneven keema within & paratha fried with ghee. There was zero juiciness in this filling. I wud not call it a bad filling but average. Filling rating is thus 2/5
Overall rating of this dish averages out to 3.25/5
We finished off with nettle tea. Loved it. Refreshing, pure & excellent. Rate it 4.25/5
Overall rating of breakfast at café lota averages out to 4.1/5.
I will keep revisiting till the time I hv tasted everything they serve…. I just love this place………
Café Lota breakfast 2
WE tried Mini rawa idly Molgapodi (a hot spicy powder also called gunpowder) – a dozen mini idlis tossed with molgapodi & curry leaves, served with coconut chutney.
There was an enjoyable fermented feel in the idli. The idlis were slightly brittle but very soft. They had relatively larger pores, not tiny ones. Aroma of good ghee made its presence felt. Masalas and crisp fried curry leaves were outstanding. Mind blowing good dish overall. We kept looking at each other speechless after eating this dish. Rate it 4.75/5
The chutney served along with the dish had a crisp fried curry leaf placed atop. The chutney was awesome to taste. It had a creamy texture to it while being grainy. Balance of taste was awesome. Rate it 4.5/5
Overall rating if the dish averages out to 4.63/5
We also ordered Aam Panna after ascertaining that it was made from real raw mango ( like it is supposed to b) and thankfully not the bottled one. The panna was thick but liquid enough to b pourable. The drink was a bit too much on the sweeter side. A bit more salt and sourness cud hv elevated this drink from good to great. Rate it 3/5.
The next dish we had was breakfast appam – an appam with sunny side up at the center. The appam part had a fermented feel to it and it tasted very good. Soft on the inner part and slightly crisp on the outer.
The egg wud have tasted better had it been desi egg or organic egg instead of bland poultry egg. Rate this dish 3.5/5.
The last item we tried was Sabudana popcorn with green chilly thecha. This was recommended by our server. It turned out to b round deep fried balls made of sabudana ( sago) & mashed potato along with a rustic green chilly chutney.
The sabudana popcorns were crispy outside, soft and moist inside.
Had excellent taste. They tasted even better with the thecha (chutney). Rate this dish 4.25/5.
We finished our morning with TGFOP tippy golden flowery orange pekoe tea. It was light, brisk and aromatic – exactly as the menu described it to b. They gave milk and honey separately but I enjoyed it just as it is. Loved it. Rate it 4.5/5.
Overall rating of day 2 averages out to 4/5. Needless to say we will revisit to taste the balance dishes.