Blurb: It has much going for it but needs a bit of refining to realize its full potential
Intro: This brand new eatery is the brainchild of two hospitality professionals who know their onions, so expect it to get better and more polished over time.
Atmospherics: This is where the restaurant falters. It has a great location, beside a mall, in an office building right on the National Highway. There’s a patch of greenery just outside the entrance, and Cooper’s Grill and Bar looks like it has been transported from the Mid West into apna desh. However, the interiors fall a little short: there is extensive glazing along two walls and no amount of air-conditioning can cool the place efficiently. The chairs and sofas are not very appealing to look at or comfortable to sit on. For all that, once it comes into its own and the weekly stand-up comedy acts and live music get underway, Cooper’s should acquire a patina of its own.
Table talk: The strong point is the food, starting with the planning of the menu. It is almost inevitable to see restaurants in the mid segment openly indulging in plagiarism of the competition, and it is kudos to Cooper’s that they have charted their own course. Some things work, others do not, but at least they’ve tried! Chimichurri spiced prawns (Rs 395) are excellent, and the house-made chimichurri is as authentic as any Argentinian blend. Chips and salsa (Rs 165), potato skins (Rs 245) and roast chicken skewers (Rs 325) are other options.
Lobster and shrimp roll (Rs 700) is by far the most expensive item on this menu. It is also unusual and takes its inspiration of Po’ Boy of Creole cooking. The remoulade sauce is intact though the shrimps and lobster is not fried but steamed. The second stand out dish is the short ribs with potato puree Rs 395. Made with tenderloin (the most popular meat in Cooper’s) that has been slow-cooked for several hours, it is served with a potato and radish mash and lashings of jus.
Plus and minus: The down to earth prices and the unique menu are the best things about this place. On the downside is the quality of tenderloin: too low fat content means that the meat is far too chewy.
Must try: Chipotle chicken burger, sliders (chicken or pork), house brulee
Food: 3.00 Service: 3.00 Décor: 3.00
33-35, DLF Star Tower
Sector 30, NH 8, Gurgaon
Open from 11.30 am to 11.30 pm
Alcohol served, credit cards
Meal for two: Rs 1500