Blurb: bookshelves, multi-level café, bar and restaurant with style and flair
Atmospherics: It is a breezy café with bookshelves and a laden pastry counter. You can browse through the books, buy them, order from a long menu (Zura is about croissants and burgers though they do have main courses as well), make use of their wifi for an hour or two, use it like a bakery to buy burger buns or foccacia, or treat the place like a meeting point in the daytime or a bar in the evening. The skill with which the eatery has been put together really does make it morph into various moods depending on the time of the day. That is its best feature.
Table talk: The best thing on the menu is an absolutely first rate section of cold beverages called revitalizers (Rs 145). You can feel virtuous at the health-giving properties while enjoying the delicious combinations: carrot, mint, celery was my favourite though khus, watermelon, grape, mint worked better than I expected. In addition, there are coffees, teas, smoothies and shakes.
The salad I tried: roasted pumpkin and spinach salad with feta cheese, pine nuts in a marmalade glaze turned out to be rather inexpertly made, with disintegrating steamed pumpkin and a too small portion of feta overwhelmed by a mountain of spinach leaves. Far better was the lamb kibbeh (Rs 295) in which the lamb mince was loosely packed yet the outer casing was firm – to my mind, the mark of successful kibbeh.
On the whole, the menu can be best described as off-beat. How do you classify a sandwich that is composed of a fillet of fried fish in a croissant (Rs 345)? Or a chicken burger glazed with onion and beetroot jam, topped with Cheddar (Rs 295), cheese or cold platters or falafel sandwiches? Even the main courses that consist of lamb chops, grilled basa and root vegetable stew are not really fine dining but hearty crowd pleasers.
Plus and minus: You have to admire a restaurant that has dedicated tables with nearby sockets where you can charge your phone or laptop! It is brand new but the youthful owner has her heart in the right place and Zura should become a cult before long.
SCO 40, Sector 29, Gurgaon
Open from 12 noon to 12 midnight
Meal for two: Rs 1,200