Cafe lungta (sector 15 market, gurugram)

This is a series about how eating out is, post COVID lockdown. Read about the previous dining out / takeaway / home delivery experiences after the COVID pandemic lockdown here – amar Jyoti tres spectra threesixtyone Tenali bagundi potbelly divine

In a NUtshell

A cafe in the same premises (different floor) as gurgaon’s best cocktail bar ‘cocktails & dreams SPEAKEASY’, both run by master bar artist Yangdup lama. Almost home like Himalayan food from different places – Nepal, Bhutan, Darjeeling. Sikkim etc. Rustic & almost real decor. Good professional service.

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Address & other details: cafe lungta

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.

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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

After spending more than a decade in gurugram, we had moved to mumbai for four years. During the time we were here, we had become a fan of cocktails & dreams, SPEAKEASY. It was there that we met the guy behind this – Yangdup lama, from Darjeeling. I have had the best cocktails in my life here (I drink very very rarely – so only do when I know there is something good). We wud only say ‘give us a drink of ur choice, different every time’. Magic wud flow in …..

 

Anyway, ever since we returned to gurgaon a year back, we had this restaurant in our list but never made it. So when we heard that the place has reopened after lockdown, we thought we should just drop in.

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The restaurant is located in the same building (ground floor) as the SPEAKEASY (basement). The facade of the building has both the logos.

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Parking is easy as it’s a HUDA market with a large parking area.

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As we walked in, we noticed that they have mandatory precautions like temperature check, sanitizer etc. They were also insisting on writing the phone number of customer as their menu is sent to customer on WhatsApp, after they take a seat. Bill copy is also sent on WhatsApp.

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I was pleased to see that the management took the initiative to give good quality face shields to their staff instead of the cheap PVC sheets which everyone is using. So far I have seen only staff in Oberoi gurgaon using these. The transparent shield was moulded round – a lot like the shields worn by astronauts.

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Menu card had descriptions of all dishes. In addition, there was a black bord with highlight items.

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As we tried to decide on the menu, we wanted to talk to the guy from the restaurant. When he came to answer, he maintained a distance consciously. It was a challenge to hear him at times but I guess it was ok. He explained our questions with great clarity & we knew exactly what to expect.

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The interiors were simple, grey. There were Large blank spaces. Masks & other accessories from the Himalayas were reminding us of BC 2020 (before COVID) when we cud just drive up to the hills on a long weekend.

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On the tables was a placard written ‘sanitized.’ There were no concept of alternate tables as the extra furniture was removed from the floor.

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Lighting was focussed on the tables instead of lighting the whole room.

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There was a small book shelf library- loved the sentence written on it.

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Food was outstanding.

Detailed description – in case u hv the time to njoy reading:

As the name suggests, Newari Choaila pork is food from Newari community people near Kathmandu, Nepal. In Nepal it is used as a snack with alcohol. We enjoyed with sips of water before & after:) it was pork chunks stir fried in mustard oil with spring onions & a few spices.

This looked like normal stir fry but as a put it in our mouth, we realized it way much more than the average meat stir fry. The pork pieces were small, very well cooked, had robust flavors of meat & were very enjoyable to munch on. The spring onions added crunch to the texture & a bit of flavor too.

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Rate the dish 4.5/5

Momocha pork (again Newari) was pork momos dunked in a thick orange broth that had strong tomato flavors followed by lemon & coriander leaves. We were also told that the dish has crushed peanuts & roasted sesame but they I guess got overpowered by the former. A hint of chilly in taste came from Sichuan pepper. I think the sesame & crushed peanut gave the unique texture to the broth & ended up being the thickening agent. Overall the broth tasted good.

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The momo body was slightly thick & brittle as compared to say Chinese dimsums. The meat mince inside was super juicy, bursting out with meaty flavors, super YUMM. The momo overall was very enjoyable – had such good momos after a long time.

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Overall rating of this dish is 4.25/5

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For drink we ordered a fresh orange based Mock tail. Very very refreshing. Absolutely loved the flavors. Dried thin slice of orange on top looked cool. It Was a tad more sweet than we like. So we ordered a second one with less sweet & that was almost perfect. Rate it 3.5/5.

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Newari chicken roast was chicken oven roasted with Himalayan spices including timbur (a Nepali chilly), served with baby potatoes, carrots & noodles (they are called chow chow). We got to know that this is a delicacy served in Newari marriages.

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When the dish arrived & I looked at the chow chow, I thought ‘oh I have to fill up space with average tasting carbs’ (how good can this get). The first bite into it, I was pleasantly shocked. Everything perfect – texture, seasoning, balance of taste ….. wah. It takes a genius to make an ordinary dish extraordinary…. bowled over. Rate it 4.75/5

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The chicken roast was outstanding as well. The burnt edges, the juicy meat, the flavors , the hint of chilly, everything came together perfect & the outcome was stunning. Rate it 4.95/5

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Overall rating of the dish averages out to 4.85/5

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For mains we had Thakali thali. It was curated from food had by thakali community people from Nepal.

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Vegetable curry of the day was stir fried Bokchoy. Crunchy & enjoyable. Absolutely different way of eating Bokchoy – a taste like never before. Loved it. Rate it 4.5/5

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Kalo dal (black lentils/ kali daal) – if you are used to having daal bukhara style daal only, I wud suggest you avoid this. This is exact opposite of that. This is almost boiled, slow cooked, has very little spices & has predominant flavors of the daal itself. No cream, no add ons. It was simple daily food. Brilliant. It takes guts to put this up on the menu. It is simple home food. Period. Nothing fancy about it. Rate it 4.5/5

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Alu sandeko was baby potatoes, finely chopped carrots cooked to a dry curry. Enjoyable. Rate it 4/5

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Mula ka achaar (mustard oil, mustard seeds & daikon radish) was full of flavors. The radish was crunchy. Rate it 4.5/5

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Mutton curry was excellent. Super soft pieces of mutton on the bones, robust flavors of meat & spices. The almost thin & flavorful gravy was so good that we kept having that & polishes it off till the last drop. Rate it 4.75/5

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We enjoyed all this with plain Rice

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Overall rating if the dish averages out to 4.45/5

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For dessert we had Shikharni. It was Nepali style whipped yoghurt with green cardamom, saffron, pistachio, nuts & apples. It was a tad sweeter than our taste but the real apple chunks balanced it. The yoghurt taste & flavor had reduced a bit during processing & there was a hint of yoghurt in the aftertaste. The beginning few seconds wud feel like Ice cream. The flavors of spices mentioned above were surely felt. Overall a good dessert. Rate it 3/5

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Overall rating of food & beverages at cafe lungta averages out to 4.1/5

Look forward to revisit here, to try Darjeeling, Bhutanese & Tibetan food, which I realize now, as I write, have missed ordering. We ended up with Nepali food only!!!

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