The large, airy, light restaurant makes a mark in its interiors. Entirely glass enclosed, it is like being out of doors, except that whether it is cold, rainy, dusty or hot as hell, you are insulated from it all, though you are a part of it all the same.
When I visited, the menu was a computer printout, Eurail had just about acquired its alcohol licence but the stocks were yet to be put in place and the pastry chef had joined on that very day. Today, however, things should be running smoothly. On the plus side is the chef that Eurail has. Young and energetic, it is obviously he who has made the menu, and it includes those dishes that he is confident of, so the European menu that travels all over the continent (rather like the train Eurail itself) represents Portugal and Hungary as well as UK and Italy.
By far and away the finest non-vegetarian starter was fish cakes with tomato cilantro sauce (Rs 375 for eight pieces). The fish cakes, scented subtly with lemongrass, were pillow soft and a completely unmissable treat. A close second were the sesame chicken bytes with sour cream dip (Rs 375 for eight pieces) which were slightly spicy and fragrant with lime leaf. The other two starters were less successful. The wasabi mayo prawns (Rs 425) had no wasabi and the cornflour coating was uncooked and powdery. The garlic pepper roast lamb roulade with rucola (Rs 375) was a straight rendition of a traditional English recipe – slightly out of place in Eurail, without a modern twist to it.
About the best thing on the menu is the cream of wild mushroom (Rs 375). Redolent with the flavour of wild mushrooms and a generous splash of truffle oil, this soup is perfect for a cold winter’s night being hearty without pretentiousness. The most ‘showpiece’ dish out of the main courses is the pot roast chicken (Rs 650). It is a simple brown stew made with strips of boneless chicken, potatoes, whole onions and leeks, encased with a puff pastry ‘hat’ that encloses the bowl in which the stew is served. Essentially a single serve portion, the pastry crust itself is the starch component of the preparation. Chicken nuggets would have been more appropriate than the strips, and carrots would have been a welcome addition to give the stew a more rustic appearance, but even as it is currently served, it has all the makings of being a Eurail signature.
Just as good was the dill scented pan grilled John Dory with lemon caper sauce (Rs 650). A classic in the days of ‘Continental’ cuisine, the sauce is served in a sauce boat and the perfectly grilled fish has been cut in the kitchen, so that the fillets are rather straggly and uneven. The same happened with our vinha d’alhos (Rs 550) that the server recommended we try. That was a mistake, especially as the server described it as a ‘Portuguese curry’. It was nothing but a red wine reduction with uneven bits of lamb and badly cut potatoes in it.
Eurail would do well to have a high tea menu with its location and open-air feeling.
Parasvnath Exotica Commercial Complex,
Golf Course Road, Sector 53, Gurgaon
12.30 pm to 3 pm and 7.30 to 11.30 pm
Alcohol served; credit cards accepted
Meal for two: Rs 2,500