Wednesday, February 24, 2016

For the Love of Period Cuisine: Haveli Dharampura Review

The capital city of India can sometimes be a pleasant surprise, especially if you are die-hard foodie, and are always ready to explore new places or locations in search of some surreal yum experience. Well, Delhi is all set to offer you something that's gonna be one of it' kind experiences when it comes to fine dine...

Yes, our recent visit to Haveli dharampura for a food review gave us a new perspective of eating out experiences and memories, take a look!

The Central Varanda f Haveli Dharampura

Food Trails at a Beautifully Restored Haveli

The old side of capital city has a certain charm, in terms of architecture and it's historic relevance. But when you know that the old architecture in old Delhi is in state of ruins, and filth and congested layout has taken the front seat, you wonder when you are invited for a fine dine experience in one such narrow lanes of this part of the world, which otherwise is very much accurate on GPS...
And,  that's exactly what happened with us when we got to know about this restored haveli Dharampura. Never could have we imagined that the invite, which otherwise looked awkward initially, turned out to be a splendid experience, and a cherished memory for years to come.

Interiors at Lakhori Restaurant, Haveli Dharampura

Yes, Haveli Dharampura, owned by the veteran politician Vijay Goyal, is a tucked-in, stunningly restored haveli, turned into a boutique hotel that's accessible only when you walk a certain distance in a narrow lane of Dilli6. But, the moment you step in, you are welcomed by a modern hospitality ambiance and gesture.

Chai Biscuit Mocktail
Gali Khazanchi Mocktail
So, we reached HD one fine afternoon last week for a casual food review of the haveli's newly launched restaurant Lakhori! The sound of the name is like it's some sort of a cuisine, which we were not familiar with but when we were given details of the story behind the name, it excited us to try out the restaurant that looked so beautiful and vintage! Lakhori is basically a brick that's thin in structure and was used in the Mughal architecture. And, since HD is all made of this brick, it was apt to cal this cozy restaurant by this name. We could see the bricks visible ad during the restoration that went on for good six years, the owner decided to get the layers of rubble on it removed, and let the bricks talk about their history. This was one stunning ambiance, and we made ourselves comfortable..
Paani Puri, flavours from Dilli 6
The menu at Lakhori is Mughalai, and while going through the menu, we could see that the owner and his family had taken keen interest to offer some great variety to the food lovers who either are travellers, or someone who loves to find new places for food...
The beverage menu was absolutely tempting, with some unusual names like Chai Biscuit, or Gali Khazanchi mocktails, or  smoothies like Lakhori Manzil or Berries Delight (not n pic). We started with both the mocktails, while chai biscuit was such fun, it was Gali Khazanchi that was spot-on. We loved the very punch of chilly that it had as an after-taste! Smoothies were equally good, and we ended our courses later on some of the Lakhori notes of Lakhori Manzil.

Palak Patta Chaat
And, started the courses now one after the other. It was such a surprise to see some amazing variety of vegetarian food on Mughalai menu. From paani-puri, spinach chat, cucumber rolls, to spicy masala papad, green kababs (not in pic) the blogger's table was flooded with some lip-smacking variety of veg starters. We were literally spoilt for choices that afternoon!
Each dish and it's presentation was so very professional, giving u a hint that something tucked inside the narrow lanes of the capital city may not necessarily offer average food.
Lakhori was suddenly buzzing with flavours, chats, and clicks of course!

Goyal's daughter Vidyun who was there during the meet told us about the restoration process, the challenges, and future plans, when the table was getting ready for the main course. This was nothing less than a lavish afternoon luncheon, as the cheese balls rolled with spinach in two gravy, the yum deconstructed aloogobi, just to name a few (apart from the non-veg options), we could see that everyone on the table was still figuring out if the main courses were even needed or not.

Deconstructed Aloo Gobi
 While the deconstrucion technique in a typical Indian food worked wonders, and it took time to figure out what exactly it was, the other courses were equally good...

 We continued sipping our smoothies that were still delicious despite just some quantity left over, when Vidyun told us how there are many more such haveli's in this city, which demand such aggressive restoration. " My father wanted to let people know that how havelis in state of ruins can be given a complete new look. We kept the basic foundation intact, and that's why you still feel that old world charm."
Before she could tell futher, the desserts were served. Now, if you are in old Delhi, it is just not possible to not to try the older delicacies like Kheer or ice cream. And, that's what came on the table in the cutesy shot glasses. this was kheer in three different flavours.

The other one was the classic kulfie , but served with a modern twist. The cone was deadly chocolate but on a milder note.

The afternoon looked like un-ending. But since we were in a hurry, we missed taking a look at the property. Well, it's the food that wooed us with it's vibrant flavours, and we can't wait to give it a try once again.. may be some style shoot or ... just like that!!

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