Still reeling the crowds in
Atmospherics: When this, the very first branch of Café Delhi Heights, opened, it took the city by storm with its wildly alternative appeal and its bold menu that dared to be different (read: cater to a demographic that was hitherto ignored). Then, there was the Juicy Lucy burger that hit the jackpot for Café Delhi Heights that soon became a chain of cafes. The original concept of the management was to cater to the Delhiite who, in turns, craved for banta soda by the roadside and for a pink martini at a club, so both those elements went on the menu. The seating too, was no short of revolutionary in the beginning, but with the passage of time, the novelty now seems fairly commonplace. What does remain, at least in this branch, is the variety of customers who walk through the door, from the fashionista to the mothers’ lunch club to corporates out for a beer, to families. They occupy all shades of the spectrum and they’re all at ease here. The other thing I noticed was that whether at lunch time or at tea-time, this branch is crowded at all times.
Table talk: The menu, needless to say, runs into several pages: it is hard work catering to all tastes. I started with Jodhpuri aloo tikka chaat (Rs 245) that was a huge disappointment. The tikkis did not even pretend to be crisp and the variety of potato that was used was floury rather than waxy. Crispness was introduced via a sprinkle of ready-to-eat, branded chana jor garam! On the plus side, the yoghurt and sauces were a close approximation of their street-side counterparts. Chilli cheese toast (Rs 165), my one weakness if prepared well, again fell short because of the variety of cheese used: if the cheese is not slightly sharp and rather gooey, it has lost the essence of cheese toast. At the end, I asked the server for his recommendation. “Khichdi” (Rs 375) he intoned in a trice, so I ordered it. It was a slightly uncomfortable match between Italy and India, in which neither side came out the winner. Yellow dal and Arborio rice, when cooked, became clumpy and dry, though there certainly was the germ of an idea there.
Plus and minus: A vast range of drinks including healthy smoothies
Must try: bang bang chicken; tiramisu; ABC smoothie
Food: 3.25; Service: 3.50; Décor: 3.25
GL-119-123, 1st floor, Crosspoint Mall, DLF Phase 4
Ph: 4229797; 9555754033
Open from 10 am to 12 midnight
Credit cards; alcohol served
Meal for two: Rs 1,500