SanaDiGe is a restaurant that has recently opened up in Malcha Marg Market in Diplomatic Enclave of Delhi – Chanakya Puri. It opened in the building that housed Schengen – Deli & Cafe, which we incidentally visited last year itself. Walking into the same building we were expecting some elements of familiarity with the last restaurant, however was surprised by the way the place has been completely made over. You are politely ushered in and directly towards the hydraulic lift which takes you to the next floor.
Though the menu had lot of options however we decided to go with the Thali or fixed meal platters on offer as that would give is a chance to try multiple things without ordering a lot of different dishes (Thali is on offer only from Monday to Thursday in lunch hours). There were 5 types of Thali to choose from – Veg, Chicken, Mutton, Fish and Prawn.
We ordered for Veg and Chicken versions however wished that restaurant would have done some mix and match of the meats. The Chicken Thali comes with three chicken dishes, prawn one with 3 prawn dishes and so and so worth – it would nice to have a thali with one chicken, one mutton and one fish dish or whatever combo the restaurant decides. Unless of-course there is some logic that says you should only be eating one type of meat in one meal.
A welcome drink of Kokum Kadhi along with some crackers was served to us, followed by assorted condiments – pickles, chutneys and sauces was placed on or table. The chicken thali came with Sanna & plain rice for carbohydrates – sanna can be described as a cousin of Idli – quite similar, still very different. The Veg thali came with two chapatis and a very small portion of what I would call Veg Biryani.
There were three chicken items in my Thali – Chicken Pepper Fry, Chicken Masala and Chicken Curry . Chicken Curry was well made and reminded of my meal at Manglorean restaurants down south, where I enjoyed the curry with Kori Roti – which thankfully was available on the menu of SanaDiGe and was promptly served, at additional cost of-course. Chicken Masala did not seem right – the flavors has just not got inside the meat and left a bit to be desired.
Chicken Pepper Fry – I guess that was the name was highlight of the meal for me – juicy and succulent morsels of chicken tossed in spices including pepper and overload of curry leaves – flavors that took me straight back street carts of semi-urban Chennai – a taste I have not found anywhere else till date.
Thali also came with Rasam, Salad, Coconut Chutney & Pickle – two of those items are anyhow available as condiments on the table and serves no purpose in the Thali – infact can leave you feeling like a fool as they seem like items just to fill the space in the platter, while adding no real value to the meal – same was the case with their vegetarian Thali as well. However my dining companion who is a moderate eater found the Veg thali at Rs.350, super bang for the buck and full of flavors. And honestly speaking the Chicken Thali at Rs.450 was not bad value for money either.
Incidentally table next to us was occupied by 3 gentleman, one of them Rajiv Talwar is also one of our readers. Thanks to him got to taste their Chicken Ghee Roast – which was well made and rich in flavors – the taste of spices tingling in the aroma of Desi Ghee were enough to make sure that I find my way back there and have more of it with their Neer Dosa. Our friends ordered Mutton Thali, Prawn Thali and Fish Thali – and only the Mutton Thali was able to satisfy them both in terms of quality and quantity. A Calamari side dish ordered by them, did not get favorable review aswell.
The Payasam served in Thalis worked as a fulfilling dessert and ended our meals with their filter coffee, which though not served in traditional apparatus was still right on spot. Our total bill was around Rs.1300-1500, which also included a massive portion of Kori Roti.
Overall a very pleasant experience full of rich flavors and considerate hospitality, just what you would expect from a fine dine establishment. The USP being the nice central location, abundance of parking and super exotic food – which is starting to find favor with us Dilliwalas, however is still not very common.