Okay, so lockdown is over officially — at least in most parts of the country. But voluntary lockdowns and social distancing is still required for us and our families to be safe. While staying at home is fun mostly (no school, college, office) , it also makes us long for our favourite things outdoor. Thankfully everything — from shopping to dining — is now available at our doorstep and we can recreate most experiences at home.
I, personally, have missed nothing more than food in this lockdown season. Tired and bored of my own cooking, the only thing I have longed for is a warm, comforting meal made with love. I have been lucky too, to have found those meals: some by courtesies of my friends, some by taking the risk and experimenting.
It is a beautiful rainy Sunday and what better day to give yourself a break from the kitchen. To make it easy, I have put together a list of places that I love and trust, and recommend you to try too. They are in no order of preference and are alphabetically listed. (I believe we can love many things the same way simultaneously!).
Also, these are places I have eaten from and can assure they are safe, hygienic and follow stringent measures of santization.
One thing I have eaten a lot of during the lockdown is Biryani. As someone who never ate biryani outside Lucknow it is a big thing, but in Delhi too there are only two places I eat Biryani from and BC is one of them. Being a part of Cross Border Kitchen, a franchie run by three amazing minds, the brand promises (and delivers) the mot authentic avdhi food. The Avdhi Biryani, Nihari and Galwats, along with the most gorgeous Taaftaans and Sheermals are things I can eat every single day and yet not tire of. And the Malai Phirnee is something I dream of ever so often. The best part is that they have expanded their delivery circle and will reach you wherever you may be in NCR.
What can I say about the food at Maurya that has not been said? It is legendary as legendary can be and authentic as authentic gets. The home to some of Delhi’s best and most favourite restaurants, OG of authentic avdhi outside avadh. My favouries are hard to list from here but I highly recommend Gucchi in all forms and taftaans and sheermals. And then there are all other classics from Bukhara, Nutmeg and Pavillion — chosing one thing is going to be hard, so I leave that task to you. Their tie up with you Swiggy means you can order conveniently.
Jade, The Claridges.
Of my most favourite old-world places to eat in Delhi, Jade is primary. Couple that with my dear friend, chef Vivek Rana, being at the helm of this wonderful restaurant and you have the food I love the most. Having cooked Oriental for decades around the world, chef Rana has something of a magic, his truffle dumplings make you weak in the knees, his fried rice satiates the deepest hungers. The best thing is that they offer pick up and delivery both. The other restaurants like Pickwics, The Dhaba, and Ye Old Bakery are delivering too, so if you are unsure of what to eat, get everything.
There is no dessert I love more than the Tiramisu at La Piazza, there is also no pizza I love more than the La Piazza Pizza. I was happiest when I learnt that I could get both sitting at home. This was at the peak of the lockdown when I needed nothing more than food. And they delivered. Anyway, I digress. So, La Piazza is when you need that soul satisfying pizza, that gratification of ravioli and the fanciness of lamb chops. Top that with a tiramisu and you are in food heaven. To me, it has been one of the most fulfilling meals of the entire lockdown period. While you are it, also give the yellow curry from TK’s a try. You can thank me later.
Plats is a special place in many ways, but most of all it is special for its fuss-free, no air attitude that is trademark of Jamsheed and Hanisha. The young chefs need no introduction so I will skip that for now. But if you want good european food this is your place to go. Their charred broccolli, shroom buns, shrimp stuffed wings, and burgers are what comfort is made of and the pavlova will make you forget all your woes, even if for sometime.
I will come back with another list soon, until then, try from these places and tell me how you like them.