A mere year-and-a-half after it opened its doors to Delhi’s public, Hotel Ambassador’s Yellow Brick Road, the brightest, sunniest coffee shop hereabouts, has acquired a cult status among its patrons. This tiny 48-seater has a distinctive personality, the best cold coffee in town, and an eclectic menu. It has taken the city by storm for its novel rendering of an old favourite: ice cream with chocolate sauce.Yellow Brick Road is perpetually filled to capacity, partly because of its range of offerings: its huge platters of grilled sandwiches don’t “Most of our guests are regulars.Some even use us it as an extension of their offices — they hold meetings here,” says manager Lekh Raj Patiyar.He goes on to tell the tale of one particular guest who, upon his discharge from hospital, drove straight to Yellow Brick Road, so addictive is the place. Soups, salads, sandwiches,pizzas, western and Indian main meals may sound standard enough fare for any upmarket coffee shop,but don’t say that to a Yellow Brick Road afficionado. Only five per cent of our guests do not go in for our Bulls’s Eye,” claims Patiyar, referring to the most popular dessert on the menu.
Consisting of a chocolate sponge drenched with chocolate sauce, heated and served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, Bull’s Eye necessarily need to be enjoyed at mealtimes atone, neither does its creamy cold coffee with ice cream.
As much credit goes to its decor as to its food: Iram Mukerji’s fun touch is as far removed as you can get from the assembly line approach — an explosion of colour right from the wall murals to the table ware. All this adds up to a formula for success not unlike a club where belonging confers a certain status on its members.
Beneath all the gaiety, however, is a seriously worked out menu which does ‘Anglo-Indian’ food straight out of the dak bungalows of the Raj. Lamb stew, railway cutlets and country captain are three masterpieces that have the right hint of British cooking with a desi touch.