Indian Cuisine, English medium

The garish interiors and small portions at Angrezee Dhaba fail to impress

Strolling past the glitzy showrooms in GK-II, M Block market, it was not difficult to spot the odd-shaped patterns highlighted by red stringy lights on the walls of a three-storey building. The quest to explore further led us to Angrezee Dhaba. At this new Indian cuisine diner, the experience is nothing short of attending a big fat Indian wedding, where you are surrounded by garishness.

The snaking staircase with red railings lead to the first floor of the rectangular restaurant that has all possible colours in the English lexicon, from maroon chandeliers to orange ceramic tiles embedded on the tables and oil paintings of a local dhaba suspended on the walls. "It is an attempt to transport the dhaba into a sophisticated setting of a fine diner," we are informed later, by the manager. Each wall stands in stark contrast. If red lounge-style cushions and couch occupy one side, adorning another wall are beige and brown tiles reflecting signs of an architectural disaster. The bar area, with its silver bordering, looks straight out of a '70's Bollywood film. Though these elements stand out individually, the theme of the restaurant sends out conflicting signals.

As we settle down on the cheap bulky wooden chairs, the menu holds promise of a good evening ahead. The items include standard tandoori dishes, like tandoori chicken (Rs 188, half) and mutton seekh kabab (Rs 188). But for starters, we were enthused by the Tandoori chaamp (Rs 222). The excitement, however, was short-lived. The mutton pieces were so skinny that it left us scraping the meat off the bones, but what made up for the sham was the tender meat smeared crudely with the right amount of spices. For vegetarians, there is nothing more exciting than the vegetarian platter, with its assortment of vegetarian tandoori items. The food is served in dhaba style stainless steel utensils, as is a chilled glass of chaach (Rs 55), which is otherwise served in kullars in most restaurants. A fresh lime costs Rs 55 and there is no alcohol. The service is prompt and the staff is eager to help. But the constant '90s Hindi music by obscure signers like Nitin Bali, playing in the background, is a mood-killer.

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