This restaurant opens only for dinner and can be accessed only by people staying at taj lake palace
In a NUtshell:
A memorable rajasthani dinner in a beautiful restaurant inside a 270 year old palace (now converted to a heritage hotel) that is situated in the middle of a huge lake, accompanied by live instrumental music by a music guru, tajness all over in the warm yet professional service and fantastic food
Address & other details: Neelkamal
Meal for 2: ₹3000 onwards
Cuisine type : vegetarian & non vegetarian
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.
Bill was paid as part of stay – hence could not be published here
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
This restaurant is located inside taj lake palace hotel, a luxury heritage hotel of taj group. The 270 year old heritage hotel is situated in the middle of lake pichola and one can reach the hotel only thru private transport provided by hotel.
The restaurant has beautiful interiors like the rest of the palace. Most of the beautiful and intricate floral decor on the wall was coloured glass cut in floral shape and inserted into a locally made plaster – bone, resins etc.
In the evenings, there is live Indian classical instrumental music inside the restaurant. As we walked in, we saw the gentleman playing Santoor. He was playing music from different genres. After some time he switched to sitar.
We were awed by his music and walked up to him to talk. He,Pandit Ramkrishna bose , is a masters degree in music from Rabindranath tagore’s shantiniketan and runs a music school in Udaipur and also one in germany. He has been playing music at taj for the last 3 decades. Loved the chat with him. The music made memories.
The menu card was short, simple and had detailed description of the dishes.
We went for the royal palace thali that gave us a glimpse into small quantities of many expected and unexpected dishes from rajasthan.
The gentleman serving us was very warm and professional – he contributed to us choosing the food and he took cate as if we were guests at his home. A chat with the restaurant manager was also very enjoyable.
Floored by the food. Some real rockstars there.
Detailed description – in case u hv the time to njoy reading:
As we waited for the food to come, we were given Ker sangri achhar with corn papad. Super loved the combo so much that we finished off the full small jar of achaar and all the papad they had given.
Kurkure bhindi – never had it so good. Super thin slices, super crisp, perfectly salted and super Chatpata. Wow. Rate it 4.75/5
Murg ke boothe was excellent- flavours of ghee, smokiness of the fire soft , juicy. Rate it 4.25/5
Mutton kabab -gosht dekchi ke suley was outstanding – charred ends, super soft, juicy, robust flavours of meat and spices. 4.5/5
Gosht dalia shorba Soup was a nice thin refreshing tomato based soup but it failed to capture the flavours and taste of the meat. Very good to taste as it is. Rate it 3/5
Then came the main course thali
Palak mangodi ki subzi was an interplay of textures – loved the way the soft and juicy pAlak complimented the super crisp lentil dumplings (mangodi). Rate this 4.25/5
Sangri dakh khara masala was an excellent dry preparation with Rajasthani local vegetable. Super loved this. Rate it 4.5/5
Thikri ki daal was awesome. The grains of daal made their presence felt yet the softness was perfect. Very well balanced taste and flavours. Loved the strong garlic flavour. Rate it 4.75/5
Bapla baati (round ball shaped, wheat ball with filling inside, ghee brushed on top) was very good. Crisp outside and soft in the center. Ghee flavors made their presence felt. Rate it 4/5
Murg kesar Kasturi gravy had a very nice flavour and taste. It was thick, creamy and had flavors of the meat. The meat pieces were melt in the mouth. Rate it 4/5
Laal maas was outstanding- true to how it shud b. Full of spices, red hot chilly. It 2 bites it did undo the effect of my evening glass of signature taj lake palace martini!!! Super loved the rustic flavors and the robust taste. Rate it 4.75/5
They also served us kadhi with Besan ki chakki and mangodi. This was not a part of the menu but we were given a small portion to taste after our conversation on that dish with the server. Wow. Clearly the show stopper. A superb yoghurt based kadhi with soft besan ki chakki and super crisp lentil dumplings mangodi. Wow once again. Interplay of textures, fabulous taste. Rate it 4.95/5
Choorma was excellent. It was just right sweet, daanedar in texture and had a mild element of salt in it. Rate it 4.5/5
Rasmalai was very good. I wud hv never ordered this on a la carte coz most people mess this up badly. We loved the rasmalai here. Not too sweet. Super soft rasgulla. Lovely taste. Rate it 4.25/5
Malai ghewar was one of the best ghewars I have had in Years. Awesome low sweet reduced milk topping on a obviously sweet base. Loved the super mild saltiness of the top layer. Rate it 4.5/5
Jalebi was good. It was crisp and sweet. It lacked the twist in the tale due to absence of fermented flavour and a tinge of sourness in the taste – as in say jalebis in mumbai or Kolkata. Rate it 3.5/5
Rabdi was again low sweet , intense, thick and super nice. It paired very well with the Unidirectionally sweet jalebi. Rate it 4.5/5
Overall rating of rabdi jalebi averages out to 4/5
Badaam halwa was very good. Loved it. Thick, daanedaar, flavours of good ghee,not too sweet and very enjoyable. Rate it 4.25/5. This dish Wud however need to travel miles to reach the levels of halwa at giani’s in chandni Chowk, Delhi.
Super enjoyed the perfection of rotis that came as accompaniments. Special mention to the one in picture below
Overall rating of food at neel kamal averages out to 4.3/5. Unmissable if u r staying at the hotel …..
Look forward to revisiting some day some time