In the confusing and overcrowded labyrinth called Hauz Khas village, a new restaurant serving Kashmiri cuisine has opened two weeks ago. It is called Tarami – named after the metal plate vaguely shaped like the Moroccan tagine on which a wazwan spread is served. “We serve authentic taste of Kashmiri homes”, says Executive Chef Ajay Babu. For this the restaurant has employed two professional kawas from the valley.
The restaurant has a fine menu with all the delicacies of the wazwan, plus more. And as I am to discover, it is the vegetarian dishes that often outshine the carnivorous ones. I am joined here by Microsoft IT pundit turned first-time-restaurateur Rahul Kundan.
A steady stream of starters now starts making their way to the table. The vegetarian ones include nadru shami kababs (Rs 299) which have a beautiful texture and softness. I am in for a bigger surprise with the mushroom galauti (Rs 299) which are some of the best galauti kababs I have tasted in the NCR. The non-veg starters in comparison are a bit disappointing. The Kashmiri seekh kabab (Rs 399) need to be softer and spongier inside and the tabak maaz (Rs 399), alas, is let down due to the quality of the meat. The accompanying chutneys (doon – walnut and mint, muj – radish and curd, and gund – onion and curd) are addictive.
As we wait for the main course, I ask Rahul about how he got to start this restaurant. Belonging to Jammu, when he shifted base to Delhi, he was hard-pressed to find an authentic Kashmiri restaurant where he could take his family. So he decided to jump right in and start such a place of his own, and the result was Tarami.
The main course starts with a beautifully rendered dum aloo (Rs 349). Tamatar chaman (pronounced tsaaman; Rs 399) is paneer in a tomato based curry and is average to taste, and the quintessential kashmiri saag, waza haaq (Rs 349) which does not disappoint. Nadru yakhni (Rs 349) is again a delicious dish. All this is accompanied by slightly-sticky short-grained Kashmiri rice. On the non-vegetarian side, rista (Rs 549) is a perfect meat ball with a beautiful saffron-cockscomb flavour, and good enough to make my heart go bhumbhro, bhumbhro. So does the garh muj (Rs 599), which is river sole fish cooked with mooli in gravy. The gushtaba (Rs 549) is a let-down with a strange texture and gloopy gravy. I end with the traditional phirni (Rs 199) which is too creamy and too sweet for my liking.
These are early days yet for Tarami so some food glitches are expected, but it has a lot going for it. The location has many discerning upscale diners visiting it. The food is authentic and often delightfully tasty. The excellent vegetarian dishes make it a perfect spot for vegetarians too. I would come back here and hope to get a perfect meal the next time.
Editor’s Note: There was an unfortunate power-cut when doing the review of the restaurant and so the food tasting had to be done in the restaurant gazebo outside. As a result we are reviewing only the food here.
Ratings out of 5
Food: 3.5 | Service: NA | Ambience: NA | Overall: 3.5
Meal for Two: Rs 2000 | Alcohol: Licence awaited | Credit Card: Yes| Timing: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Address: Tarami, 30 A, 1st Floor, Hauz Khas Village, New Delhi | Phone: 011 40591823