This is a review of ‘the glory of Gulmarg’ – a kashmiri food festival at three sixty one degrees
In a nutshell:
absolute terms : very enjoyable. Great ingredients, Brilliant flavors, outstanding texture of meats, overall great spread. Unique about this meal that we were floored about – both the guchchhi dishes.
Relative terms : our respect for matamaal (a 6 year old, chef led, family run restaurant in gurgaon) shot thru the roof…… period.
Address & other details: the Oberoi gurugram
Instagram : the Oberoi gurugram
Facebook: the Oberoi gurugram
Cuisine type : vegetarian & non vegetarian
Meal for 2: ₹6000
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.
YUMMRAJ rates all the food items & then gives 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 got to know of this food festival from a post on Instagram by the oberoi gurgaon. Must say that the follow up marketing was very good – it constantly created a desire to drop in…..
The menu card was very well written, with descriptions of the dishes. One could choose a vegetarian meal or a non vegetarian meal.
There was also an option of ordering a la carte from this menu.
Service was impeccable as always.
Training of staff on the food being served at the festival was grossly inadequate. Examples
1. Our server Told us ‘chicken meatballs’, pointing at gostaba (lamb)
2. The yellowish orange Chutney (I’ll refer to as ABCD) – one told us mango. Then he said ‘raw mango’. Second guy said ‘pumpkin’. Third guy we asked said ‘I will ask the chef & get back. He returned to the floor & stood at a distance. Ensured not to make eye contact.
3. Another guy told us the mooli Chutney was horseradish!!!! Invisible horse:)
Are the trainers challenged to get across pop up training ? I know it’s difficult, but maybe it’s Time to give this a thought. This exhibition of lack of knowledge happened last time too. Read the full story here – bengali festival.
Food in general was very good.
However this is what happened after the festival – our respect for matamaal shot thru the roof!!! A restaurant opened by a home chef with active support by her husband & sons, Matamaal has been serving impeccable consistent kashmiri pandit food for last 6 years. The difference of food of Matamaal (sit & eat) & oberoi was that at oberoi:
1. the gravies were smoother (at Matamaal the powdered fennel seeds texture can be felt).
2. Saffron was used extensively in many dishes
3. Gucchi was served in two dishes
4. Meat pieces in roganjosh are smaller in size but better cuts.
5. Strong flavors that are inherent to the dish, had been neutralised e.g. mooli chutney, monje haaq
Other than this, the food at matamaal could give us as much or more joy at 1/3rd the price. I am usually the one to never comment on price but the difference between the two products here was too little.
Detailed description – in case u hv the time to njoy reading:
3 chutneys were served – mooli (white), ABCD (yellowish orange) & akhrot (green)
Mooli Chutney was good – balanced taste. Subtle. Lacked the punch of mooli Chutney of Matamaal. Minimal flavors of mooli. Rate the mooli Chutney 3/5.
Yellowish orange ABCD chutney was good to taste but remained tight lipped about its parents & hometown. Rate it 3/5
Akhrot ki Chutney was very good. Rate it 4/5
Haradhani dalchini shorba – the Soup was nice. Flavors of Cinnamon & coraider were not obvious. Taste was Good overall. Rate it 3/5
Kong dahi kabab – Saffron, dahi, cottage cheese, was simply wow. Crisp outer crumb fried crust, super soft bite, creamy, hung curd based kabab with paneer in it. Best part of this dish was the contrast of textures.
Loved the salt n tart taste. Outstanding. Rate it 4.75/5
Nadur kabab – kababs of lotus stem (Nadur/nadru) with dry mint, whole kashmiri chilly & black cumin, was excellent. Intense taste with a great balance of taste. Melt in the mouth texture. Rate it 4.75/5
Methi chaman – paneer in methi (fenugreek) gravy, was again very enjoyable. The softness of the paneer & a thin layer that had formed on it during frying, was magical.
Loved the gravy. Rate it 4.5/5
Kani gucchi – gucchi morels cooked in thin yakhni style gravy with saffron. This is the first time we had a gucchi dish & understood what’s so great about this mushroom. Flavour bomb…. Loved the gravy. Rate this dish 4.75/5
Nadur yakhni was a yoghurt based yakhni gravy – excellent. Rate it 4.5/5
Dum olav cooked with tomato, fennel seeds & dry ginger powder. Fiery looks, full of flavour, nowhere as hot as it looks. The aloo was punctured all over & hence the gravy travelled in, thus changing the texture of aloo as compared to other dum aloo s. The gravy was much smoother than at matamaal. Rate it 4.75/5
Monja haaq – Braised kohl rabi mustard oil kashmiri chillies. If we had not had this at matamaal, we might have liked it. The one at matamaal is a flavor bomb. We have been spoiled by amazing monje haaq at matamaal.
The haaq at oberoi gurgaon was meek, bland & was afraid to make its presence felt. The flavors of monje were missing. Rate it 1/5
Kashmiri rajma dal cooked with tomato & onion, spiced with dry ginger & fennel, was excellent to taste. It was cooked like a daal. It did not have full rajma like delhi rajma but it was like a thick daal with pieces of rajma. Taste was outstanding. Flavors were too good. Rate it 4.75/5
Gucchi pulao – let me break this into two parts. Gucchi was 4.95/5 in terms of flavors.
Rice of the Pulao – great flavors 4.75/5. Taste was excellent. 4.5/5. However texture went for a toss. Rice was dry & suboptimally cooked. Rate it 1/5. Overall rating of rice averages to 3.4/5
Overall rating of the dish averages out to 4.2/5
We were served 3 kashmiri breads – Khameeri roti, bakarkhani & taftaan . Loved all of these. Rate them 4.5/5 collectively.
Kong phirni had a semolina & milk base with saffron. Perfect proportions of milk & semolina cooked to perfection. Rate it 4/5
Badaam ka halwa – made from mamra almond (one of the best & expensive varieties), was outstanding. The flavors of ghee, the texture of almond slices, the texture of halwa – just too good. Rate it 4.5/5
Shufta paneer dry fruit cherry – this was a revelation!!! Tiny pieces of deep fried soft yet bouncy pieces of paneer, the choicest of dry fruits, a sweet & tart thick liquid base, topped with a cherry. Loved this one. Rate it 4.75/5.
Non veg meal
The vegetarian mains except three were common with the non vegetarian platter. So we are not repeating those in the section below.
We started with Gosht yakhni shorba – It surprisingly had Zero meaty flavor. However it was a Nice yakhni soup. Thin, Tart , perfect seasoning. It was good to taste overall. Rate it 3.5/5
Methi murg was chicken cooked with Fenugreek & spinach. Soft & juicy pieces of chicken & intense spinach sauce. Rate it 4.5/5
Tabakh maaz – ribs of lamb simmered in meat stock till tender, then fried. This was excellent. Incidentally we had the same dish at matamaal the same morning. Almost Equally good. Loved the meaty flavors & the meat to fat ratio. Rate it 4.75/5
Haaq gaad – this was a fish curry, cooked with lotus stem, radish, haaq leaves. Loved it. Rate it 4.25/5
Goshtaba was hand pounded lamb cooked in a yoghurt gravy. Excellent gravy – tart & salt balance was perfect. Loved munching on the strong flavored meatball. Rate it 4.5/5
Roghan Josh of mutton had been cooked with red chillies, cinnamon & fennel. The piece was delicate & outstanding. The gravy had incorporated the flavors of meat very well. The gravy was really good. Rate it 4.95/5.
Overall rating of food at the festival averages to 4.1/5
Look forward to the next interesting pop up here.