This South Delhi Cafe serves Hookah and Food – All Night Long.

Hookah is served 11 pm to 6 am – which makes it a ideal spot for that post party conversation, with option of taking it under the stars.

Yes, you read it right. For those who are familiar with the party & late night scene of Delhi, are no stranger to Cafe 1440 in Hotel Vikram, a landmark hotel right next to Moolchand Hospital / Flyover / Metro Station in South Delhi. The location is a stones throw away from South Ex, Epicuria, Defense Colony, Chanakya Puri & Hauz Khas for that matter. CP would be a 10 minute Uber ride at that hour of night.

Which makes it an ideal spot for after party chilling, relaxing and enjoying. Plus they have the open air lounging area .. 😉

They had to halt operations due to some issues 2-3 years back, however the 24 hour coffee shop is back with a bang. Though the hotel remains under renovation, which is expected to be completed around Diwali, Cafe 1440 is already working and is welcoming guests.

The cafe serves special late night combos like Butter Chicken Parantha, Dal Makhani Naan, Biryani Raita etc and the best part – it serves as a after party chilling spot with your friends – as you can order a Hookah or Sheesha in your favorite flavors – middle of the night – in open air setting, which in itself is one of its kind luxury in capital city of Delhi. There NO other cafe or restaurant in Delhi which can boast of such facilities, which I would rather call luxuries.

So next time you have that late night craving for a dessert or post party NEED of Butter Chicken, you know where to head to. Hookah is served 11 pm to 6 am – which makes it a ideal spot for that post party conversation, with option of taking it under the stars.

FED Giveaway : Meal vouchers for Followers & Readers – We are giving away 10 vouchers that would cover a meal for 2 at the cafe – Every voucher is worth Rs.2000 – which you can avail for Food and Hookah at the cafe at your convenience.

Just share your email ID in the section you see below and leave a comment telling us about your type of After Party – how you chill, what you do – tell us all. The most liked comment, stands to win a special prize… 😉

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Best Restaurants in 10 different cuisines in Gurgaon : Ultimate List

In the ever expanding dining scene of Gurgaon, here are some of the Safest bets when it comes to delicious food from different cuisines.

Gurgaon (Gurugram) is home to a diverse population of people from across India as well as outside. No wonder it has some of the best food options from across the planet. This list attempts to provide Gurgaon foodies a list of top restaurants in each type of cuisine. Only major cuisine groups have been categorized as others would be part of the specialty cuisine list.

Here is the defining list of best restaurant from each genre:

Mughlai / North Indian – Karim’s, Sector 14

One of the iconic brands from Delhi, a number of purists would disagree on putting its name here simply because it is a branch and not the original. But on a personal note, and I have been a regular to the original Karim’s, this one is as good as any. Visitors must try the Mutton Korma over here. Tandoori rotis here are crispier than anywhere else. Other prominent items here include- the sheermaal (a kind of sweet bread), firni (similar to kheer), kebabs and Nihari.

Mutton Stew at Karim's. PC: Eatlo Delhi-NCR Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/Eatlo.Delhi/
Mutton Stew at Karim’s.
PC: Eatlo Delhi-NCR Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/Eatlo.Delhi/

Indian Vegetarian – Bikanervala, Sector 29

This is the ultimate Indian eating-out retail experience. One gets any item under the sun as long as it is vegetarian. The staff is mechanically efficient and it is a wonder how they manage such enormous traffic especially during peak season such as festivals like Diwali, Holi, Dussehra etc. The food is pretty good, the chhole- bhature and papdi- chaat being the best ones. By all means one must try the laddoos here. They ooze freshness.

Thali at Bikanervala. PC: Eatlo Delhi NCR https://www.facebook.com/groups/Eatlo.Delhi/
Thali at Bikanervala.
PC: Eatlo Delhi NCR https://www.facebook.com/groups/Eatlo.Delhi/

South Indian – Cocoa Palm, DLF City Centre (MG Road)

Unlike several other places that claim to be the serving authentic South Indian but only do an assortment of dosas and idlis, this place actually does do justice to the term authentic. It serves the usual gravy items, rice based items and even meat preparations which are popular in south India. The appams here are fluffy, thought the parottas are a tad too oily. The Nilgiri Chicken is a concoction of numerous spices wonderfully simmered together. The interestingly named Ishtew (stew) for either vegetables or chicken are extremely wholesome preparations. Be prepared to face lot of chilies if one tries any of the Andhra based items.

South Indian Thali at Coco Palm PC: http://foodiemonk.com/restaurant-reviews-gurgaon-mg-road/moets-coco-palm/
South Indian Thali at Coco Palm
PC: http://foodiemonk.com/restaurant-reviews-gurgaon-mg-road/moets-coco-palm/

Bengali – Oh! Calcutta, Cyber Hub

This place is worth its name especially if one goes for the buffet. The buffet is a delectable spread consisting of various dals, fish preparations, meats, vegetarian items, fries and sweets. The prawn / shrimp fries are especially good. The preparations are cooked in genuine Bengali style but innovations have been made on traditional methods. The buffet keeps changing from day to day but is at its best on weekends.

'Beguni' or traditional Bengali eggplant pakoda at Oh Calcutta, Cyber Hub, Gurgaon. PC: Sayanatani Dasgupta https://www.facebook.com/sayan10e?fref=ts
‘Beguni’ or traditional Bengali eggplant pakoda at Oh Calcutta, Cyber Hub, Gurgaon.
PC: Sayanatani Dasgupta https://www.facebook.com/sayan10e?fref=ts

Chinese – Mainland China, Cyber Hub

This is another place which delivers its very best during the buffet. The starters are lavish and sometimes visitors fill themselves up with these but that must be taken care of to avoid. The main course consists of meat, fish and vegetarian items. Menu keeps changing and the best part is during the weekends. For some reason, the desserts especially the cakes are of top quality. One must undertake this buffet with the sternest of warnings not to eat anything else for the rest of the day.

Authentic Chinese Cuisine at Mainland China, Cyber Hub, PC: https://finelychoppedk.wordpress.com/2010/05/06/almost-as-smooth-as-the-finest-of-silks-mainland-china-bandra-w/
Authentic Chinese Cuisine at Mainland China, Cyber Hub,
PC: https://finelychoppedk.wordpress.com/2010/05/06/almost-as-smooth-as-the-finest-of-silks-mainland-china-bandra-w/

European / Continental – Drift, Sector 44

This place also does Kashmiri food, but its offerings are certainly European. It has a wine based buffet which is reserved for weekends only. Imported wines (red, white and rose) from Australia, Italy and Argentina have been part of the fare in the past. The cold meats form an excellent start to the meat. The next section comprises the main items which includes a mix of gravy and dry items. The bacon is one their best. There is even a waffle counter. To top it all up are the desserts which includes a vast array of sweets and freshly cut fruits.

Lavish buffet spread at Drift, Sector 44 Gurgaon. PC: https://www.scoopwhoop.com/Buffets-Below-Rs-1000-In-Delhi-NCR/
Lavish buffet spread at Drift, Sector 44 Gurgaon.
PC: https://www.scoopwhoop.com/Buffets-Below-Rs-1000-In-Delhi-NCR/

Korean Gung the Palace, Sector 29

The bearers at this restaurant are usually surprised at seeing Indians, as this place on most occasions is teeming with expats especially from East Asia. Due to Gurgaon’s substantial expat populations, such places have emerged as sort of refuge for the foreigners. But for few Indians, Gung offers up a great adventure. By all means, one must try the squid, octopus and pork items here which are the very best. The Korean teas are served alongside. The side dishes that are accompaniments with all items themselves are extremely filling. The overall experience is an interesting one, as visitors need to take off their shoes and sit in a particular cabin with sliding doors.

Authentic Korean spread at Gung the Palace, Sector-29, Gurgaon. PC: https://yummraj.com/2011/09/17/gung-the-palace-bikanerwala-parking-gurgaon/
Authentic Korean spread at Gung the Palace, Sector-29, Gurgaon.
PC: https://yummraj.com/2011/09/17/gung-the-palace-bikanerwala-parking-gurgaon/

Mexican – Salsa Salsaa!, Sahara Mall (MG Road)

This restaurant is located in a corner of a mall that is typically associated with inexpensive, functional shopping and a seedy nightlife. Yet on this corner one gets absolutely great food. The Mexican items such as Nachos and Burritos are of course wonderful. In addition they prepare unbelievably good sizzlers, with the asparagus stuffed chicken being the best of the lot. Pizzas are also crisp with the base being soft.

Mexican food at Salsa Salsaa, Sahara Mall, Gurgaon. PC: https://yummraj.com/2012/08/29/salsa-salsa-1st-floor-sahara-mall-m-g-road-gurgaon/
Mexican food at Salsa Salsaa, Sahara Mall, Gurgaon.
PC: https://yummraj.com/2012/08/29/salsa-salsa-1st-floor-sahara-mall-m-g-road-gurgaon/

Microbrewery Bronx, Sector 29

Among the slew of microbreweries dotting Gurgaon, this one stands out due to several reasons. All three varieties- wheat, dark and premium lager- are well prepared with the first two being especially good. The food is good with quantities being decent. The ambience is also well curated. Another plus point here is the taste in music which is soft and eclectic.

Locally brewed beers at Bronx, Sector- 29, Gurgaon. PC: https://www.dineout.co.in/delhi/bronx-the-brew-bar-sector-29-gurgaon-21406
Locally brewed beers at Bronx, Sector- 29, Gurgaon.
PC: https://www.dineout.co.in/delhi/bronx-the-brew-bar-sector-29-gurgaon-21406

American- TGIF, MGF Metropolitan Mall (MG Road)

Before we start with the superlatives, just a few valid points of caution need to be presented. The prices have gone up astronomically and the music played is so loud that one will never be able to have a meaningful conversation here. The only respite here fortunately is the quality of food which undoubtedly is very good. Please try any of the steaks here as they are the specialties. Also the Cajun cuisine is well made involving seafood. They also have some signature items infused with Jack Daniel’s during the cooking process.

Huge burger at TGIF, MG Road, Gurgaon PC: https://www.zomato.com/photos/pv-res-1245-r_MTcxMDkyMzY3MD
Huge burger at TGIF, MG Road, Gurgaon
PC: https://www.zomato.com/photos/pv-res-1245-r_MTcxMDkyMzY3MD

Well these are my recommendations, looking forward to hearing what you Foodiye from Gurgaon have to say about the dining scene out there. Do share the outlets that you would want me to visit.. 🙂

Restaurant Bills Explained – 2016 Version

Service Charge, Service Tax, Value Added Taxes – We bet they have got you all confused. Here is a layman’s guide for understanding & making sense of our Eating out bills.

Menu prices may seem very deceptive once you get the final bill in hand. Suddenly there is a barrage of taxes and charges staring in your face which you cannot make any sense of, however still are supposed to pay. Here is a guide that we have put together, which may help you in making any semblance of your eating out bills.

Difference between Tax and Charge

Charge is not fixed by anyone and outlets are free to write whatever percentage they deem fit on the menu. You can protest against it sure – if you do it before eating, it would be like haggling for the price of food and if you do it after eating it’s similar to you refusing to pay the bill if you are not satisfied with it. Service Charge is the most common charge applied in India and ranges from 5 – 15% of the total bill, 10% being the most common number in industry. Charge is something which is part of the revenue of the restaurant – what they do with it is their prerogative.

Continue reading “Restaurant Bills Explained – 2016 Version”

How does FED Giveaway work?

We organize giveaways for our readers & followers giving them an opportunity to participate in a draw and get chance to win some amazing goodies – they can be food hampers, gadgets, books, coupons, vouchers etc.

Through these we help selected businesses connect better with net savvy food lovers, giving them tremendous exposure and reach, while being a fun activity for audience offering them cool prizes for playing along.

Our giveaways are exciting because you can do a lot more than just submit your name and email address – you can actually campaign for your cause through a link exclusive to you. According to our referral program, any friend that signs up for giveaway, gives you 3 additional chances at winning it. You can do so by simply sharing your personalized link on your own facebook profile or sending it to what-app or email groups you are part of. So if 3 friends sign up for the draw, you get 9 additional entries at winning the same draw. The more entries you have – the higher your chances of winning the sweepstakes!

Please note its important for your friends to sign from the custom URL that our system generates for you, which you can see in the snapshot below – you will see this URL once you have submitted your own entry to the giveaway. 

You can see - http://http://goo.gl/qJDst5 - this is how your would look like as well.
You can see – http://goo.gl/qJDst5 – this is how your URL would look like as well.

In case you miss it the first time, you can always go back to the page of giveaway or draw you are participating in, and copy the link again. If not showing,  entering the same Email ID as the first time, would show your link again.

The winners are chosen at random by Digital Algorithm itself, from the total entries that we receive.

Merchandise for Food Enthusiasts

Old Monk Rum is a cult among us Indians, and this EXCLUSIVE phone cover is our way of expressing love and gratitude for all the good times.

Old Monk phone covers
Old Monk phone covers

Old Monk Limited Edition Vintage Designs : Buy Here

The Mobile covers are available for multiples makes and models. Each piece is priced at Rs. 799 699 and will be shipped all across India.

Before you make a booking kindly select the model of your phone and see how it looks – for eg this looks great on iPhone 6s and One Plus One, however would be a waste on Moto G3 due to camera placement.

We are also introducing super cool Mobile Covers – to help you express your love for food in a trendy and cool way.

Fed merchandise

The Mobile covers are available for multiples makes and models. Each piece is priced at Rs. 799 699 and will be shipped all across India.

Before you make a booking kindly select the model of your phone and see how it looks – for eg this looks great on iPhone 6s and One Plus One, however would be a waste on Moto G3 due to camera placement.

Buy FED exclusive mobile covers – One Plus One / One Plus X – Choose your model.

Buy FED exclusive mobile covers – iPhones 6 / 6S / 6Plus / 5S / 5 – Choose your model.

Buy FED Exclusive T-Shirts – Campaign Closed!

Over the years we have released several designs, which have been bought, worn and appreciated by thousands of food lovers till date. We have optimised one of our most popular designs and it is now available for booking once again.

When you are sexy and you know it..
When you are sexy and you know it..
You know you are in love when...
You know you are in love when…
When love of food comes with genes..
When love of food comes with genes..

These Unisex T-Shirts are available in sizes upto 2XL and 3XL and are shipping all across India. We advice you to check size chart before ordering. The cost Rs.499 each.

 

You think you can WIN this amazing book?

Korma, Kheer and Kismet: Five Seasons In Old Delhi is a record of the food experiences offered in the streets of Old Delhi. Pamela Timms came down all the way from Scotland to enjoy the tastes and flavors of Indian food, which she found it in the street food stalls.

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Even though we try to make this work with as many devices as possible, however its impossible to do justice to add smartphones, tablets & computers out there. Though entry would work on most devices, however if you are not able to share or copy your link from your mobile phone or tablet, then you might want to open this page from your laptop or computer and then share  it.

Please read : How does a FED Giveaway Work?

Pamela Timms decided to get away from the dampness of Scotland and enjoy the sun and heat in India. She came to Delhi and her mission was not just to enjoy the tropical climate but also to discover the heady flavours of Indian foods.

Initially, Pamela Timms found it difficult to sample the genuine taste of Indian food. She then decided that Old Delhi was probably the best place to find it. She began exploring the side streets and by lanes of Old Delhi and discovered the wonderful street food stalls, offering a mind boggling variety of foods.

She soon discovered the taste of korma, kheer and jalebis and began exploring even deeper into the heart of the old city. She made friends and was invited into the homes of the people who prepared the delicious foods sold in the food stalls.

Celebrating festivals with them and enjoying the delicious sweets and spicy foods, she soon began collecting recipes for many of the wonderful dishes sold in the streets. She is now a part of the community whose food traditions she set out to discover.

Rupa Publications has published this hardcover edition of Korma, Kheer and Kismet: Five Seasons In Old Delhi. This is the first edition.

Key Features:

  • This book is a delightful record of the year the author spent discovering the culinary delights offered by Old Delhi.
  • It contains tempting description of the delightful fare offered and directions to the best eateries in which to enjoy them.
  • Each chapter in the book also contains detailed recipes for the delicious dishes that she discovered, enjoyed and then learnt to cook.

What readers are saying..

Lovely. I have gifted this book to umber pus friends who have all loved it and followed in its footsteps, every delicious step. Can’t wait to return to delhi and follow the trail.

I purchased this book with some misgivings, to be very frank. Here is yet another “firang” giving her two bits worth about Indian food, I thought dismissively. So, i first downloaded a sample, and on Christmas Day, while my wife was busy preparing a lunch of Mutton Rogan Josh for me, I started on the sample. Beforte lunch was served, I had purchased the book, and was well into the intricacies of Ashok and Ashok’s Muton Korma recipe ! Pamela writes with a sure touch about the a subject she obviously loves to a fault – good food. Her writing is witty and sincere, and she brings a Westerner’s eye for detail into her recipes. And her descriptions of the bylanes of Old Delhi are charming and so evocative, that you can actually feel you are there with her as she dashes off on a cold winter dawn in search of the elusive Daulat ki Chaat, or understanding the mysteries behind Bade Mian’s creamy Kheer, or the simple delights of a coal roasted shakharkandi. Her accounts of life around the dusty alleys of Jama Masjid, or the cubby holes in and around Chandni Chowk, reveal a gourmand’s true love for food belonging to a bye gone era. The book is a must read for lovers of Delhi street food at its best.

We are running this giveaway for your readers and followers, which is based on Lucky Draw. You just need to share your name and email address below to get yourself an entry into the draw. Once you do that you will also get a link – which you can share with your friends to enter the contest, and the best part – if any of your friend also signs up for this, you get 3 addition chances to win – so increasing your chances to win manifold.

You can buy this book straight from Amazon as well :

 

Ottimo at West View – ITC Maurya – Ready to host Royalty

The charm of the location, the view, the knowledge that who’s who of the world dine here – ensures that every evening spent here, is going to be an evening of lifetime.

ITC Maurya has been part of Delhi’s Landscape for around 40 years now. Though a slew of modern and luxury hotels have opened in Capital and NCR, they have not taken any charm away from this luxury hotel, located in Diplomatic Enclaves of New Delhi. Well known for hosting executives, ministers, leaders and head of states from all over the world – the hotel is equally popular with denizens of City of Delhi – thanks to many culinary aces that they keep up their sleeves including Dum Pukht and probably the most famous restaurant in India – Bukhara.

West View been a part of the hotel for couple of decades, it never was as busy or famous as other restaurants in the same hotel, however it always had its cult following – a dedicated audience who swear by the place as well the lavishness of their Sunday Brunches.  Infact when ITC wanted to introduce Ottimo to this property, which has been a great success at their hotels in other cities, they decided to keep the ‘West View’ name (unlike other properties) where Ottimo is a standalone brand, here it became Ottimo at West View.

I have been told that Ottimo means excellent in Italian and is  lead by Chef Vittorio Gecco – who after working for several Michelin Star restaurants around the world, joined ITC and started Ottimo at ITC Chola – their signature property in Chennai.

Now that you know more about the place, let me start at the start. West View has been fully redone and we were invited by team ITC Maurya to experience what they have worked really hard on.

We landed their at 7 pm – just the start of their Dinner service. Walking into the restaurant it felt like a drawing-room or just an extension of the kitchen – a very classy one at that. Occupying a table for two on the west windows of West View – the view and the location started to dawn on us. When you can see a sprawling green forest and a setting sun on horizon, it becomes hard to believe that you are bang in the center of a City like Delhi. We jumped from our seats and leaped towards the terrace area – now called an Infinity Theater and a sky bathed in colors of sunset was out there to welcome us. The terrace now has a few tables along with some greens, which technically are their kitchen garden, also housing a pizza oven in a corner.

Coming to food offered – it can primarily be divided into 3 parts –

  • Ottimo’s Italian a la carte menu- Pastas, Pizzas, Soups & More.
  • The Grill – Array of meats and vegetables for you to choose and ready to go on the grill.
  • Cold Buffet spread – with choicest of cheese, meats and salads.

Rs. 1200 gets you to the cold buffet, while you can order other things A la carte, then comes Rs. 2500 option where you get access to the Cold Buffet Cart, choice of one Soup and choice of a pasta. For Rs.3500 you get access to the Cold Buffet, Soup, Pasta, Grills as well as the desserts. All the prices are exclusive of taxes and service charges may apply.

We started off with assortment of cheese, olives, sparkling wine, bread basket and some goodies from their Cold cart. As expected from an establishment of such repute – all of them were of highest quality and set our tummies for gastronomical delights that Italian Chef was about to dish out for us.  A special mention to the Pesto sauce served to us with our breads – it has to THE finest and most aromatic pesto I have tasted till date, closely followed by Naturellement in Auroville, Puducherry. No wonder both of these restaurants are growing their own basil.

We started again, this time with Risotto – topped with crunchy asparagus and sun-dried tomatoes. Simple but robust flavors and beautiful texture defined this European Rice preparation. In pastas, we chose Ravioli – and were served one stuffed with wild mushroom and ricotta and truffle – topped with Parmesan reduction which added the magic to this dish – definitely among the finest that I have laid my fork on.

How can visit to an Italian restaurant be complete without trying their Pizza? – we decided to go for one with Mascarpone Cheese, Tomato, Mozzarella and Parma Ham. Very simple combination, made exotic by availability of  Mascarapone and Parma – both of them still a rarity across pizzerias in town. By this point we were at the end of our appetites, however succumbed to our taste-buds, which demanded more food. Still curious to try the main courses, we went for the lamb chops.

Tender lamb chops stuffed with Parmesan and truffle crusted with almonds and bread crumbs, served with vanilla mash potato, spinach and sautéed vegetables. That is the literal translation from menu – wonder how they managed to get cheese and truffle inside the chop. The texture definitely felt that it has been worked on – reminded of a very fine hand pounded gustaba – coated with crispy  goodness of nuts and bread most probably used as a binder. Beautiful texture of meat was accentuated by the rich nutty crust, while the the potato mash served with it was as creamy as they come. The way zucchini was ‘buttoned’ and served, talked a lot about the art that went behind this dish.

We ended the meal with couple of desserts – Handmade Mango Icecream topped with cherry compote and a Tiramisu – came in a jar and was served with three different chocolates on the side. Not the most bitter or intense Tiramisu, however light, airy and still full of flavors. That said, would expect the Italian chef to produce a show stopper – which this definitely was not. In Mango Cherry ice-cream would love to see more play with the cherries, instead of being a compote or sauce.

As detailed as I have been about the main dishes, I would say that this place is more about a relaxed dinner experience. The kitchen type setup of the restaurant is very inviting, very casual, still exuding that classy feel. You can just go for the cold buffet and the amazing assortment of ‘Tapas’ made of produce from their garden, meats and cheese would keep you great company while you nurse your favorite wine or champagne. Add to that the charm of the location, the view, the knowledge that who’s who of the world dine here – ensures that every evening spent here, is going to be an evening of lifetime.