PICS: MARCO POLO
The Indian chef and host of the popular cooking show Khana Khazana presents an overwhelming menu of North Indian specialties and chaatwala-inspired dishes at the three-month-old outlet at the Blue Bird Mall in Thapathali.
Upon our entering the dining hall from the very formal reception desk, it was clear that we were underdressed for the upholstery. The origami napkins, modern angles, earth tones, recessed lighting, jute and bronze-vested staff suggest fine dining with swank and as we soon discovered, the prices matched our first impressions.
Every other menu entry is a dish from Kapoor's televised compendium, highlighting the colours and flavours from his family's home in Meerut or his Pashtun heritage. His signature dishes, indicated by his silhouette, were naturally sampled.
Khaas Seekh (Rs 650) advertised as the "Chef Special" and "the softest seekh kebabs you'd ever have" were quite different from Kapoor's kebabs as televised in a September 2011 episode. Preparations may be different from the kitchen and the tandoor, and perhaps, watching Kapoor makes the food seem just more appetising. The minced chicken that enveloped the paneer stuffing was hardly traceable.
Shaam Savera (Rs 650) the restaurant's "signature preparation of spinach koftas filled with paneer served floating in a velvity makhni gravy" sounds divine. But sad to say, the gravy tasted like treacle and the paneer was grainy.
Kapoor's saving grace, aside from its attentive service and comfortable setting, was in his sweets, as to be expected. Kesari Kulfi with Rabdi (Rs 225), apparently "sugar-free," was a toothsome dessert where the saffron married well with the homemade ice cream.
Blue Bird Complex at Thapathali above the KFC and Pizza Hut Delivery