Tuesday 18 March 2014

Attending My 1st Menu Launch - The Chakhna Menu @ Punjab Grill

I started reviewing on Zomato because I have an ongoing love affair with food and I can be quite opinionated when it comes to the things I eat. So after eating out with the hubby I’d go on and on about the food. Finally the hubby said “You know you should start reviewing on Zomato!” possibly because he was so sick of me blabbering on non-stop :)And once I started reviewing on Zomato, I couldn't stop. And while I’m no expert chef or food connoisseur, it’s nice to know that my opinion does count and is appreciated.

So when I received an invite from Sonali Kapoor of Lite Bite Foods to attend the launch of the Chakhna menu at Punjab Grill, I was over the moon, especially since I have wanted to visit Punjab Grill ever since I shifted to NCR. But for some reason or the other I've never made it there. The icing on the cake was that I’d be getting to rub shoulders with so many noted food bloggers as well as people in the food industry.

I've said it before, and I’ll say it again, the thing that I love most about these sorts of events is the opportunity it gives me to meet new people whose passion for food equals if not rivals mine! It’s so stimulating to be able to talk to people in the food industry and pick their brains about their thoughts on food- it’s almost amazing and sometimes even comical how much we can talk about it! And it’s also nice to be able to chat with the people behind the food, in this case Chef Gurpreet Singh, about his thoughts and the inspiration behind this interesting menu which was inspired by the concept of Tapas, or small plates of food accompanied with drinks.

[Chatting with Chef Gurpreet while the hubby digs in!- image courtesy Punjab Grill]

What Chef Gurpreet wanted to do was to take this concept and give it a North Indian twist by coming up with interesting ways to serve old classics that have deep rooted associations to growing up, college and life in the North of India. It was quite an interesting idea, creating a North Indian Tapas menu and not just with food, but with a few cocktails as well, and I was really intrigued. How successful was it? Well there were in my opinion some real stars that I would go back for again and again. 

[Image- Shalini Pereira]

[Ganne ka Margetita- image courtesy Punjab Grill]

[Rasbhari ka Margetira- image courtesy Punjab Grill]

From the drinks, there was one stand out for me and that was the Ganne ka juice margarita. It was basically a desi take on a classic- unabashedly Indian and proud of it! I was blown away. A perfect drink for summer that looked beautiful and tasted amazing- an absolute must try if you visit Punjab Grill. Another drink that I found interesting was the Rasbhari margarita. This had to be one of the prettiest drinks I'd ever seen- top marks for presentation. It was another very desi take on a margarita, but one that was much more complex and one that I'm still on the fence about.

[Small Bitings that included delicious onion pakodas- image courtesy Punjab Grill]

When it came to the food, there were a lot of things to be tried. I enjoyed the prawn tikki, masala mattra, however I would have liked a few more prawns because I felt the taste of the prawn was getting lost. 

The stars of the evening in terms of food? Well, I had two out and out favorites- one was the tawa chicken keema with fryums which provided an explosion of flavor with every bite, and the other was the sunny side up tuk tuk khameeri roti which was a really interesting combination of caramelized onions and soft eggy goodness encased within a soft, fluffy roti... so good, just think it could have done with a tad more seasoning. 

[Tawa Chicken Keema with Fryums- image courtesy Punjab Grill]

[Sunny Side Up Tuk Tuk Khameri Roti- image courtesy Punjab Grill]

This was a really interesting idea by Chef Gurpreet and Punjab Grill. Some really delicious food, and it's definitely worth a visit to try out this menu, but I do think that that more could have been done with a few things and if you want to read more about the food, you can see my detailed review of Punjab Grill’s Chakhna Menu here.

Overall though, a great night out with great company and a nice chance to taste some interesting and delicious 'tapas' with a North Indian twist. Do head out to Punjab Grill to try their Chakhna menu which will be there until March 31st. 

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