It’s been almost two years that I have been in Ahmedabad now, and off-late, many exciting new eateries have opened up. It is a Saturday, the eat-out day, and I browse online for a place we haven’t been to before. I decide to venture a bit far to the SG Highway and go to The Trophy at YMCA International Center
There are valets available to take care of your car, which made things convenient. A flight of stairs to the first floor takes me to the restaurant. It being a Saturday, we are greeted by a large crowd waiting for their tables. I locate the lady I had spoken over the phone with, and request her to get me a table ASAP. It’s my lucky day; we got one within ten minutes.
The ambiance here is one of the best I’ve seen in Ahmedabad’s restaurants. The area is large, but not huge, with about 35 covers (my guess), spread evenly. The owners seem to be die-hard cricket fans, as cricket posters, sports quotes, equipment and memorabilia can be seen hanging or pasted around the walls and the ceiling. A bit overdone perhaps, but not obstructive. A full-size statue of Sachin Tendulkar stands right at the entrance. A bar is located in a corner, though no alcohol is served. It is the IPL season, and the restaurant has installed about 25-odd televisions, in a way that every diner sitting inside can have the view of at least one of them. Thoughtful!
The menu designs also seem to have been carefully thought over. It is large, nicely laid out and an even mix of Indian, Continental, Italian and Chinese. Every page contains pictures of sportspersons, along with the fare, which makes it an interesting read. When we ask about the number of chefs, we are told there are just two. The warning bells started ringing. I cannot possibly imagine two people, however competent they might be, being able to churn up so many different cuisines perfectly, and at such pace. We let fate decide the course of our evening. For starters, we ordered Stir Fried Chicken in Hunan Sauce (Rs 275); Fish Fingers with Tartar Sauce (Rs 285) and a Hot & Sour Soup (Rs 165). As the food arrives and we take the first bite, the warning bells subside, and a sweet, warm feeling takes over.
The Stir Fried Chicken in Hunan sauce is one of the best dishes I’ve tasted in Ahmedabad till date! Delightfully crunchy and juicy chicken, delicately flavored with star anise; a hint of black pepper, soya and chilly; the balance is perfect. This is beyond my expectations. Fish Fingers are good too. Though nicely crisp on the outside, the fish itself is a tad overcooked. The soup, however, has an overdose of corn flour and therefore is very thick — not the way I like my soup. Moreover, the ‘hot’ and ‘sour’ elements are subdued; I would have expected it to have a sharper flavor. The main course is ordered and consists of The Ultimate Non-Veg Skillet (Rs 325); Mexican Hot-Pot Rice (Rs 395); Vegetarian Thai Green Curry with Steamed Rice (Rs 350). Drinks are a Coconut Mojito (125) and a regular Mojito (125).
The Ultimate Non-Veg Skillet is chicken chunks, chicken sausage, mushrooms, baby potatoes and baby corn, topped with pepper sauce, cheese and a fried egg, arranged in a frying pan. It is a nice touch of showmanship. However, though the elements individually sound good, when combined, they don’t give the desired effect. The pepper sauce does not gel with the rest of the components because it is gluggy with an overdose of pepper. . But the meats are well cooked and retain the bite till the end. The Mexican Hot Pot Rice comes in an earthen pot, with tortillas and soup sticks standing up around it. The dish contains rice, vegetables and stray pieces of meat in the same gravy as the Non-Veg Skillet, so the taste is similar
The Thai Curry is a complete let-down; the curry has a super-overpowering amount of lemongrass in it. Absolutely not recommended!
Now to the drinks — the mojito is pleasant, with all the ingredients coming together, but the coconut version does not have any ‘coconut’ whatsoever. Both drinks look alike, and taste alike. Maybe I should stick to soft drinks ahead.
The Trophy does look promising. Barring a few dishes, they seem to churn up a decent fare. They however, need to work on their drinks. My next visit will happen soon, and this time it would be a different set of dishes. Hope it will go up a notch in the impressions.
Disclosure: This review was done after an anonymous visit, the food paid for by the reviewer.
Rating out of 5
Food: 3.0 | Ambience: 4.0 | Service: 3.0 | Overall: 3.0
Meal for two: Rs. 900| Alcohol: No | Credit Card: Yes
Address: Trophy, YMCA International Center, Near Divya Bhaskar, S G Highway, Ahmedabad | Phone: 079 65404545, +91 9978902506
– Amit Uppal