For my last full day in
The first stop was
I was greeted outside the hotel by a traditionally dressed, well-mustached, Indian man. Upon entering the lobby, I noticed the beautiful ceiling mural in the seating area, the cool temperature, and the amazing smell. As I was ushered to the restaurant, I could see a big pool and well-manicured garden. The restaurant itself was immaculate, with a glass-enclosed kitchen so you can see the chefs at work. There were a few other customers, though it felt like I had the place to myself.
Chapati with a green sauce and spiced onions were delivered as complimentary appetizers, along with my mineral water. The copper water cups were cool. I ordered:
- Murgh Malai Kabab, a creamy kabab of boneless chicken blended with cream cheese, malt vinegar, green chili, and coriander, grilled in the Tandoor oven
- Mixed Raita (yoghurt) with cucumber
- Onion Kulcha, spicy cooked onion sandwiched between two pieces of naan-like bread
- Bombay Sapphire gin and tonic, my favorite cocktail
All of the food was delicious. The chicken was the best I've had in months. I could barely finish it all. The cloth napkins were actually mini-aprons, which gave plenty of surface area for wiping my hands given the eating was done by hand. The service was fantastic, and the ambiance serene.
Going into the experience, I knew the price range and there was no disappointment in this respect. My lunch cost about $60, excluding tip. The funny thing was I was no more satiated after the meal then lots of other Indian dishes I enjoyed over the preceding 7 weeks. It reminded me I can be as truly satisfied with a $2 malai kofta (potato/cheese dumpling in gravy) on the rooftop of humble Carpe Diem in McLeod Ganj as a fancy restaurant in a 5-star hotel.