This is a series about how eating out is, post COVID lockdown. This post is about home delivered food from hello panda. Read about the previous dining out experiences after the COVID pandemic lockdown here – amar Jyoti tres spectra threesixtyone
In a NUtshell
The most impressive home delivered Asian food I have had in a decade, in india.
Address & other details: hello panda
Meal for 2: ₹500 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.
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 read praises of the food & packaging of hello panda in post on Facebook by Pritha sen, a food historian, journalist & a great cook herself. So we were eager to order from here.
Then on a Saturday when we were about to go out for lunch, the lady of the house suggested we order in. I Reluctantly agreed – super pleasantly surprised at the outcome thereafter
I had just written one sentence in ‘special instructions’ while placing order online – ‘do not indianize it. Please keep flavors & textures like original. same as how it is eaten in the country of origin of the dish).’ Loved the meal.
The packaging, as mentioned by Pritha sen, was really good. A thick, strong paper bag with high GSM & bright print on it was attractive as I got the parcel.
The bowls were thicker, stronger & felt more like tiffin boxes than a throw away. The packs were sealed & we had to open each seal.https://yummraj.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/img_2047.mov
In the bag we found a colorful, printed menu card, a beverage card & also a single disposable mask!!! This part was very confusing – did the mask slip in here by mistake or r we supposed to wear it while plating!!!
Chopsticks for 1 person came in a branded pack. The food ordered was surely for 2 people.
A letter was attached on the bag – it had details of the packing boy & also the delivery boy : name, body temperature at the time of packing & pick up respectively. It also had instructions about how to plate the good safely.
A small booklet had details of cocktail mixes that they are sending – for a potential future order.
A tag that hung from the bag had a hand written message on it from the manager / chef (I don’t know).
Hand sanitizer pouches were also in the bag
Each box had the name of the dish clearly written on the top.
Food was just fabulous. Look forward to more.
Detailed description – in case u hv the time to njoy reading:
Ganbian kunga – bitter melon was excellent. The vegetable was crunchy. It was bitter but not like falling off the chair variety. Enjoyable bitter. Sesame flavor made its presence felt. Red chillies added some flavor & a good amount of punch to the taste. Unexpected, different, outstanding…. rate it 4.75/5
Auna goma (complimentary) – spinach in sesame sauce was again a marvel. The sauce was again sesame & it’s rich flavor & texture was unmissable. The slight sweet taste was very enjoyable. Spinach was perfect. Bowled over. Rate it 4.95/5
Hai guo rou – twice cooked pork was quite good. However it did not stand out as much as the previous two. I have surely had better twice cooked pork, both in india & different countries of Far East Asia & China. The taste & flavor was good but the texture of the meat cud have been notches above. Softer, juicier, better balance of fat & meat is what I would say are area of improvement. Rate the dish 3.5/5
Steamed sticky rice was enjoyable.
Tarmari glazed Chilean sea bass looked sad when we opened the box. However as soon as we popped it in the mouth, our eyes closed in reflex… the juices oozing out from the flaky fish, the perfect texture & just the right flavors of the sauce…. wow. Rate the dish 4.5/5
The veggies were crunchy & enjoyable. The sauce was very good. Rate this 4/5.
Overall rating of the dish averages out to 4.25/5
Overall rating of food at hello panda averages out to 4.4/5
Loved the experience & absolutely look forward to more.