In a NUtshell
Rarely everything that is laid out on a long menu turn out to be great. Usually there are one or two dishes that end up being suboptimal – this meal we had at manzilat’s was an exception. All dishes were excellent
Address & other details: Manzilat’s
Meal for 2: ₹1000 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 had first had food cooked by Manzilat’s Fatima in mumbai, at a pop up, at the residence of Ms. Pia Promina Dasgupta Barve in Bandra. Pia is a legend in mumbai home chef circles (& many other circles) & she used to do (almost) monthly pop ups in mumbai. The food at her pop ups collectively sum up to the ‘best experience of a lifetime’. She used to cook food from different regions of the world, long menus, sunday lunches lasting 3-4 hours, each & every dish a class apart.
Manzilat’s was the only pop up where Pia did not cook herself but had someone else showcase her art. We absolutely loved the food by Manzilat – april 2018.
Many months later when we heard Manzilat has opened a kitchen in kolkata, we decided to drop in. We finally managed to make the trip to her eatery in December 2020.
As you know, We go to all restaurants in anonymity & here I had thought Manzilat wud recognize us. We had deliberately booked in a different name. Good that she did not recognize us – So we managed to maintain our anonymity well. 🙂 we went & ate like everyone else, no special treatment as a blogger/ someone known.
Manzilat Fatima is the descendant of the last nawab of Lucknow – wazid ali shah (who was deported to kolkata by the British in mid 1800s). In her kitchen Manzilat cooks heirloom recipes from her family. The food is quite different than what we get to taste at commercial restaurants in the city. I have heard from people in the food circuit of kolkata that guests have been thru ‘good & bad food days’ at Manzilat’s – we however had a fabulous food day.
Manzilat runs the all women kitchen from the terrace of a building in Kasba industrial estate. They have 4 tables with a seating of max 20 people at a time.
We called manzilat’s number to book our seat.
She suggested that we WhatsApp the request on a number. We did. An auto rely came instantly which said ‘sit in’ will remain closed.
Later in the day Manzilat confirmed our booking.
On the appointed date we reached the building – it was a large building with other occupants in the lower floors. We went up to terrace above 3rd floor walking as this part of the building did not have a lift.
The topmost floor had a locked gate. We rung the bell. A lady from manzilat’s team came down & opened the gate after some waiting. She sanitized our hands & asked us to leave footwear outside the gate.
As we walked up from the top floor to the terrace, we saw framed family lineage history of Manzilat- from the last nawab to her.
As we settled down, we were sent a menu on WhatsApp.
We ordered little bit of almost everything first & then did some reorders & finally the inevitable happened – we somehow managed to roll out of the place.
Detailed description – in case u hv the time to njoy reading:
We were served a lovely Christmas cake (on the house) as we settled down
We were impressed at the disposable plates & cutlery.
Mutton Awadhi Galawati kabab came first. True to it’s nature, the kababs were so soft that they were falling off. The kababs were more grainy than say the version we have at kitchen of awadh gurgaon, Oudh, kolkata, or at some restaurants of Lucknow.
We loved the texture. It had a nice feel to it. The flavors of meat & spices beautifully complimented each other. In short it was stunning. Rate it 4.95/5
Chicken lazeez shami kabab was excellent. Usually we do not order broiler chicken kababs but at manzilat’s we did. The decision turned out to be good. The kababs were full of flavors of meat & spices. The meat & daal proportion was very balanced. It was a non greasy, light kabab. Loved it. Rate it 4.5/5
Fish chatpata handi kabab was an unusual dish for an Awadhi menu. However it might have been invented by the khansamas of the nawab after they moved in to a land surrounded by water with plenty of fish. The fish used here was bhetki.
Very good kababs. Good flavors, flaky & juicy fish & perfect seasoning & balance of taste. Rate it 4.5/5
Kolkata shahi mutton biryani was seriously interesting as a topic – it was Wajid ali Shah’s khansamas & descendants who made changes to the Lucknowi dum biryani to suit local needs / availability & thus was born kolkata biryani (after going thru changes over the decades). So we were at manzilat’s & having kolkata biryani – isn’t that an interesting topic.
The biryani was excellent. It had the traditional aloo, excellent pieces of super soft mutton & long , independent, soft, aromatic rice. The rice was perfectly cooked & had beautifully merged the flavors of meat, rice & spices.
Rate it 4.75/5
Chicken shahi rezala was very good. We liked it way better than the rezala at sabir’s. Rate it 4.25/5
Chicken Nawabi chaap was outstanding again. We went for a repeat as we just cud not get enough of it. We Iicked off the gravy till the last drop. Absolutely fab. Rate it 4.95/5
Shahi halwa was very good too. The flavors of ghee were enjoyable & so was the moderate sweetness. Rate it 4.5/5
We had all the curries with crisp on the top, yet soft Ulte tawa ka parathas. Rate them 4.5/5
Overall rating of good at manzilat’s averages out to 4.6/5
Absolutely brilliant. Highly recommended by YUMMRAJ