I’m not a food connoisseur but when a friend asked me if I wanted to review the flagship Indian restaurant at the Soaltee Crowne Plaza, I could not let it pass. Having spent three wonderful years in Delhi for college, and having eaten some of the best North Indian/Mughlai dishes there, I thought my palate was well-seasoned to take on the challenge.
Kakori is open only for dinners. During our visit the restaurant was running a special promotional menu with Kebabs and Parathas.
We started our dinner with the customary chutneys, relishes and roasted papadums. Soon after, our order of Charminar Banjara Kebab (Rs 900) was brought to the table. According to Chef Yubaraj Pokhrel, this dish was a favourite of the Nawab of Hyderabad. The kebab was succulent, mildly spiced and was well complimented by onion rings it was served with.
Next up was the Dhunar Gosht Kebab (Rs 900), which was described to us as a minced mutton kebab smoked with charcoal. The kebabs were served alongside Khameeri paratha and chutney. The outside of the kebab was a little crispy and smoky and the inside was full of spice and it easily melted in our mouth.
The combination of kebab and paratha with the chutney was heavenly. The chef candidly told us that these kebabs were made extraordinarily soft to accommodate the nawabs and emperors who did not have teeth.
For the vegetarian amongst us, we ordered a Jaffrani Tawa Kebab (Rs 950), which was a shallow fried assorted patty of beetroot, sweet potato, peas and paneer. The patty was soft but the paneer’s taste overpowered all other ingredients.
All kebabs were served with two different parathas and daal makhani. The Taftaan paratha (Rs 200) was a multi-layered roti that went well with the daal and the soft kebabs. The Warki Kulcha paratha (Rs 200) on the other hand was very rich and aromatic as it had been generously marinated in ghee and saffron. I did not like that the parathas were a little stiff. Some of the best parathas I’ve had have been soft, easy to tear and able to scoop any accompanying dishes.
Throughout our meal, the chef remained present to answer any questions we had about the dishes. Some of the kebabs he mentioned needed three days of preparation and many ingredients were sourced from abroad.
Although not all the dishes that we sampled had an excellent taste, we enjoyed our meal overall. The price may put off many diners from enjoying a dinner here, but in the restaurant’s defence, it is worth the effort that goes into making these truly authentic and quality dishes.
How to get there: Kakori is inside Soaltee Crowne Plaza in Tahachal.