In a nutshell:
A small beautiful restaurant run with 100% involvement of the owners on a daily basis, serves the Best Kashmiri Hindu food I have ever had – a wide range of great vegetarian and non vegetarian dishes, dream land for taste buds.
Address & other details: Matamaal
Meal for 2: 800 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:
We first ate at Matamaal years back when it was a takeaway. To read earlier review pls click here.
The restaurant is currently occupying two shops in a nicely made but mostly vacant market by DLF. Parking is a cakewalk.
The dining hall has a shikara ( traditional Kashmiri boat) in which guests can sit and enjoy a meal. Rest furniture is traditional wooden furniture.
Menu card is short and sweet. Check out for their weekend menu that keeps changing.
Service is good. The owners are there most of the time and hence that also ensures good service.
Since the kitchen is micro managed by the owners, Food is outstanding- it’s like having home food at a restaurant. Flavours, taste, ingredients – all are top notch. The lady who owns cooks certain dishes herself till date.
It was a pleasantly surprising lunch as every dish was outstanding- a rare thing to happen.
Detailed description- in case u hv the time to njoy reading:
We went for a vegetarian thali and a non vegetarian thali.
The Vegetarian thali had lader chaman, fritters of nadur, chok wangun, haak, dum aulo, kashmiri rajma, nadur yakhni.
The non vegetarian thali had kabargah, masc, gosht yakhni, roganjosh, chok charwan (khatta / sour kalayjee), mujeh chetin (mooli ki chutney)
We also tasted Extra two dishes – mutton kaliya and chaeme ( minced mutton in yakhni gravy).
Haaq was a super simple Kashmiri spinach soup. It was just outstanding- spices could not be seen, flavours and taste of spinach was above all. Rate it 4.5/5
We started our meal with Kabar gah – mutton ribs marinated in raw spices and milk, served fried. This was very similar to the Tabak Maaz. The rib pieces have meat and fat in layers. A bite into it was pure delight – soft, juicy & YUMM beyond expectation. The outer layer was burnt & that gave a super texture & flavor to the dish. This was better than all Tabak Maaz I have ever had anywhere in Delhi NCR.
The flavors of meat & those of spices were simultaneously there. There was no iota of rubberiness (which tends to be a problem with Tabak Maaz not cooked properly) & that made the whole experence amazing. Rate it 4.75/5
Another interesting thing was that the meats in each & every gravy had a character of its own. The themselves tasted great & also had flavors emanating. They were surely not plonked into some gravy as an afterthought
Dum aloo had a bright red gravy that did not taste as fiery as it looked like. That’s how Kashmiri Mirch is. The potatoes were full size – not cut into pieces. Soft & nice. Flavors of spices were evident. Rate it 4/5.
We also tried chok wangun – Khatte Baingan. It was made of small aubergines. The aubergines had seeds but that was within tolerable limits. The dish had a predominant Sour taste, as the name suggests. The sourness was perfect. Excellent flavors of spices & perfect to taste. Whole spices added zing. Rate it 4.25/5
Masc – spiced meat koftas cooked in spices and Kashmiri red chilly. I have had the same dish at a Kashmiri friend’s home. Both were equally good – actually brilliant. The meat Koftas were handmade, lumpy, the spices were mixed to the meat, the surface of the koftas were un-uniform, they had rough edges but very were very good to taste. Infact it tasted so good coz it was not machine made. The unevenness was a part of the texture that influenced the taste.
Gravy was one of the best again. Saunf made its presence felt in addition to other spices. Rate this dish 4.75/5
We then had lamb Roganjosh. This amazing dish is one of the most bastardized dishes across the Globe & restaurateurs have abused this name beyond imagination (in some cases). Just about any stupid gravy is often referred to as Roganjosh!!!!
The Lamb Roganjosh at Matamaal was par excellence. Bursting out with flavors. It had the remains of coarsely ground spices. Seasoning was perfect & the taste was just too good. As mentioned above, the meat pieces were themselves super YUMM. Rate it 4.75/5.
Lader Chaman was a Kashmiri paneer curry , incredibly well made.the paneer was top quality and the gravy was super YUMM – we finished it till the last drop. Rate it 4.75/5
kashmiri rajma was thick, intense, robust and just about perfect in every way. Rate it 4.5/5
nadur yakhni was yakhni (curd based gravy) made from lotus stem (nadur). The gravy was a thick pourable liquid with an intense taste. The balance of salt and sour was perfect. The pieces of nadur was good – not melting away, not hard. Rate it 4.5/5
gosht yakhni was just too good. Once again, like the nadur yakhni gravy this gravy wAs pourable thick And had perfect balance of sour and salt. However magic in this dish was unleashed by juices of very good quality mutton getting added to the gravy – again finger licking good. The meat was soft like marshmallows but it retained its texture and meat flavour. Rate it 4.95/5. In am salivating As I write this.
chok charwan – khatta (sour) kalayjee (goat liver) was a dish that We had for the first time – small pieces of goat liver cooked in a sour gravy. Outstanding again. The liver was as soft as it cud get. The gravy wAs slurp slurp. Rate it 4.5/5
mujeh chetin (mooli ki chutney) was lovely. Thinly sliced radish chutney that retained the pungency of the vegetable and also is crunch. Rate it 4.25/5
mutton kaliya was a thin gravy of mutton- reddish in colour. The mutton pieces were too good. The gravy was very good to taste as well. Rate it 4.5/5
chaeme( minced mutton balls in yakhni gravy). Visually it looked like the gushtaba / Rishta meatballs. The ball had been made not by smooth pasting the meats and hence it was lumpy and juicy. Just awesome. Yakhni gravy was the same as gosht yakhni. Rate this dish 4.5/5
When we had entered, we saw a freshly baked Kashmiri bread basket. Tasted a bit of that. Superb it was.
Also enjoyed a kahwa here – like home made.
Nadur (lotus stem) fritters were the only dish that was just good but not beyond. It was crisp, good to taste. Rate it 3/5
For dessert we had phirni. Intense, thick, flavorful. Rate it 4/5
Overall rating of food at Matamaal averages out to 4.45/5
Needless to say I Wud revisit and also take my friends there.
Highly recommended by Yummraj