Food business is continuously re-inventing the proposition to its customers. I feel excited to see many people from non-industry joining the foray to complete their restaurant dream and bring with them new insights, new values, and new benchmarks. What they miss is the experience and details which only an insider would have.
Café Delhi Heights is opened by next-gen, Vikrant Batra (same chain that owns Batra banquet and ‘Delhi Heights’ restaurant in Delhi) bringing with him the ability to think new, and the experience gained from his parents. We were personally pleased to see the casual seating and the menu which caters to the changing times. I have been longing for an Egg Benedict and a good non-veg burger (Chicken isn’t in my list of non-veg burgers), which I could find in any non 5-star property in Gurgaon. The void was filled by Café Delhi Heights, and this is where I say research and experience come into play in a city which has hordes of other specialty restaurant but lacked a decent café. Picking up the best of world cuisine and showing the evolving taste of Delhi over the last century, café has picked up its theme well.
The seating was comfortable, so-much-so, that my back pain was half gone when I left the café, wondering if it was actually the seating or the effect of the experience we had there. Health conscious may like to try the Peanut Butter Smoothie (155; soya-milk base) but I preferred the Hot Chocolate Frozen (225), and Cheddar Cheese and Beer Soup (185) which were refreshing and set the mood for the evening. Egg Benedict (145) available for breakfast, was served to us in the evening; a gesture which we warmly appreciate. It tasted nice, but wasn’t a traditional Egg Benedict. The egg yolk was thick, and we couldn’t taste the oh-so-necessary Hollandaise sauce. Also, I don’t prefer cheese on my favorite egg dish. The English muffin used was nice and we ended up finishing the whole thing which if called by any other name would be a hit. And then came our favorite, Juicy Lucy Burger (275, thick lamb mince filled with cheese and jalapenos covered in soft sesame seed burger). Undoubtedly the best I have had at Gurgaon, perfectly seasoned and juicy to draw our attention and focus. Served along with potato wedges and coleslaw, it is a complete meal in itself. Well made Khao Suey (325) had a hugely big serving and would be sufficient for two people of normal appetite.
|Juicy Luicy Burger|
|Peanut Butter Smoothie|
|Hot Chocolate Frozen|
|Cheese and Beer Soup|
|Cafe Delhi Heights Version of Egg Benedict|
Smoked Chicken Lasagna in Thai Coconut Sauce (325) was as good as one would find in every second restaurant. The garlic bread served along was micro-waved and hence became all dry and chewy. Our disappointment at the café was Tenderloin Steak (375; served with black pepper sauce). We asked for a medium rare steak, but were served a medium well done, and hence it wasn’t as soft or juicy on the inside.
Café Delhi Heights has decent selection of desserts and we tried Tiramisu, Chocolate Fondant and Blue Berry Cheese Cake (175 each). Each of the dessert was nice, but special mention to the cheese cake, which was fresh and though a cliché wouldn’t hesitate in saying, it was one of the best I have had. My friend who accompanied couldn’t resist few bites though he isn’t a great fan of Blue Berry. He probably wanted more, if I allowed him to lay his hands on.
|Blue Berry Cheese Cake|
The in-house bakery, a comfortable and casual seating, tasting menu (order prix-fix few dishes as a paid sampler before ordering your preferred dish), an eye for detail by owners (like mint flavored water), nice music and food, and soon to be opened bar at the café will make it a happening hot-spot in Gurgaon. Only thing to watch out for is the complacency and the seating. Looking at the place, 80 covers may not be good enough soon.
Ratings out of 5
Food: 3.0 | Ambience: 4.5 | Service: 4.5 | Overall: 4.0
Meal for two: Rs1200 | Alcohol: Coming soon | Credit Card: Yes| Timings: 9.00 am onwards
Address: GL-121-123, Ist Floor, Cross Point, DLF Phase-4, Gurgaon | Phone: 0124-4119797/ 9911154033
– Pawan Soni
Aalok Wadhwa’s version of the restaurant below:
Right as I enter Café Delhi Heights, I notice that the sign on the door says ‘pull/push – whateva’. The décor inside is funky. The café is clearly divided into three sections— Indian, Mediterranean and European.—not just the furniture but also the names of the servers in each section (the Indian side has servers sporting nametags like Raju, Goloo and Bhaiya, while those on occidental side are called Enrique, Andy, Bryan and Paul). As I sit in an attractive booth which has its own wall-mounted television, I can’t but help noticing small, quirky little touches all over the café which add to the anticipation of the food to follow.
First to arrive on the table is a chilled glass of mint-flavoured water. Refreshed I take a look at the vast menu. Confused by its many choices, I seek the help of Chef Netar Singh who seems to love everything on the menu but does give some helpful suggestions for ordering.
To start with, I try a couple of dishes from the café’s thoughtfully created tasting menu. The service is ultra quick and soon to arrive on the table is the café’s spin on a Mediterranean classic. The colourful looking platter (Rs 155) has three different takes on hummus—the regular, a beetroot one, and a pesto variant—served with warm pita bread. The taste of the trio matches the professional presentation which is top rate. The grilled fish platter (Rs 175) with three morsels each with a butter garlic, ginger and spring onion sauce is fresh and flavourful. The accompanying no-hangover mojito mocktail (Rs 155) is tangy and friendly.
The café is buzzing with diners and many of them seem to be ordering the substantial looking juicy lucy burger (Rs 295), a dish the chef seems very proud of. Of course I have to have one too. Soon the moment of truth arrives. Up close, the burger looks good enough to feed a small family. And this lucy is truly juicy. Here is two hundred and fifty grams of fresh lamb mince with a cheese and jalapeno stuffing in a soft sesame seed burger bun. I open my jaw as wide as I can and bite into the beast. With the stuffing oozing into my mouth, the meaty perfection that this burger is hits the spot bang on.
To sample the Indian section, I try the chef recommended lal maas with bajra roti (Rs 375). The dish bears no resemblance to the Rajasthani delicacy, but has well cooked meat which interestingly pairs well with the rough texture of the roti.
The menu has a lot of variety for the vegetarians as well. Notable are Moroccan stew of vegetables with preserved lemon saffron couscous (Rs 325), mushroom stroganoff (Rs 275), and cheese & fresh asparagus risotto (Rs 275).
It is time to take this indulgence to its logical conclusion—the dessert. The chef-recommended chocolat fondant (Rs 175) is wicked. What looks like a petite size cake is actually a bomb of silky melting chocolate, and a perfectly satisfying end of a meal.
Visit Café Delhi Heights for its ambience and its attitude. And, yes, its food.
Café Delhi Heights, GL-121-123, Cross Point, DLF Phase-4, Gurgaon
Phone: 4119797; 9911154033
Cuisine: Mediterranean, European and Indian; Breakfast
Timings: 9.00 am onwards
Cost: Rs1200 for 2 (no alcohol served)
This review by Aalok Wadhwa was first published in Friday Gurgaon