The word “Dum” may take you back to the classic Dum Maro Dum, Zeenat Aman number, but the affairs here are nothing of the kind. Dum Affairs is an elegant, 65 seat fine dining restaurant in South Extension Part II done up in a duet of white and mahogany. The food focus is authentic Awadhi cuisine which is famous for its “Dum” style or the art of cooking over very slow fire.
As Pawan Soni and I walked into the premises, we were greeted warmly by the hostess. She had been informed well in advance and was expecting us. She led us three floors upwards and got us comfortably seated on a nattily decked up table. The shimmering long stemmed goblets adoring the well laid out table looked “expensive”. The food and beverage menus appeared well in time. The enterprise owner, Varun Suri joined us thereafter and talked us through his journey from consumer durables to his childhood passion – “good food”. Second in command Chef Govind Singh Bohra also joined us and retreated soon thereafter to flag off the extensive “Lucknawi” culinary journey they had planned for us.
Our “La Affaire de Dum” started with Lamb Galouti kebabs (Rs. 550) and Khasta Roti (Rs. 95). I felt the roti (bread) was an Indianised version of a short crust cookie. The Galoutis were an absolute melt in the mouth but a tad salty for me. However, the taste balanced out when I tucked them in with the roti. The next round of vegetarian Subz Ke Shammi (Rs. 425) was dainty and quite flavoursome. Saffron egg coated chicken, (Rs. 550) kebabs served next were delicately spiced; however, we found them to be a bit underdone and not much different from an equally delicately made chicken tikka. Last of the starters, potato morsels or Chatpate Aloo (Rs. 425) were lip smacking and left a lingering aftertaste of tamarind.
The dishes served during the main course were spectacular barring the Dum Ka Murgh (Rs. 575) which was just well cooked chicken but nothing extraordinary. The Lamb or Gosht Nihari (Rs. 575) was excellent and was served with the right accompaniments. The cottage cheese preparation or Paneer ka Methidar Qaliyan (Rs. 450) was delicate and creamy. The coarsely ground lamb preparation or Haleem (Rs. 575) was aromatic and felt nice under the teeth. The specially recommended bread, Jaituni Kulcha (Rs. 125) was stuffed with olives and surprised me – both as a creation and with its flavoursome taste.
By now Pawan and I were happily planning to wrap up, when to our surprise a covered brass handi was brought up. This special appearance was made by Dum Ki Gosht Biryani (Rs. 650) when we thought the meal was over. Seemed the ball had started to slip. Our plates were replaced but the harried steward forgot about bringing in the fresh cutlery. This notwithstanding, the biryani served with cumin tempered Burrani Raita indeed was very well done and had the right aroma to satiate our palate as well as olfactory senses. The delay in service seemed because more tables were now occupied and the limited force was striving to make everyone happy but still slipping.
To Sum-It-Up: Dum Affairs is a great place with great food and well suited ambiance for special occasions unless you wish to take a well minded hit on your waist as well as wallet. To complement great food, they just need to focus a wee bit more on the staff augmentation, training and coordination to avoid confusion on the available items and delays in service.
Ratings out of 5
Food: 4.0 | Ambience: 4.0 | Service: 2.5 | Overall: 3.5
Meal for Two: Rs 2000 | Alcohol: Yes | Credit Card: Yes| Timing: 12:30 PM to 3:30 PM (Lunch) and 7:30 PM to 11:45 PM (Dinner)
Address: E-12, South Ex-II, New Delhi | Phone: 8826608855/ 8826607755