One would think that it would be difficult to recreate magic after Prankster but the same team headed by the Banga brothers have done it again! Pra Pra Prank, recently opened in DLF Cyberhub, Gurgaon, takes you on a culinary journey where, if possible, this crazy, passionate team have surpassed their own selves.
At the outset, what got me curious was the name Pra Pra Prank. I was told that the words “Pra Pra” reflect the significance of “two” (2) – the restaurant is a coming together of 2 cuisines i.e modern Asian and modern Indian, is a creation of 2 brothers (Inderjeet and Jasmeet Banga}, has 2 excellent chefs i.e. Harangad Singh and Kaustabh Haldipur and is 2 restaurants in one – a bistro café and a well cordoned off classy bar. “Two” is certainly a great number in this case as it made me dance delightfully through an exotic culinary journey where not only did each dish taste better than the previous one but very evidently, great thought had gone into the flavour profile, pairing of ingredients, textural contrasts, unique presentation, perfect execution and fabulous taste which lingers on in the palate leaving it asking for more.
As you walk up to the restaurant you can see that there is outside seating as well as (obviously) inside seating. After entering the restaurant, one walks straight into the casual dining café where there is a very unique, innovative glass door with miniature alcohol bottles lining it from top to bottom. I thought that the glass door would lead to the kitchen but was totally surprised to note that the door separated a very classy British looking bar from the bistro section.
Let’s come to the main reason for being there – the food.
My friends and I started the palate ride with Petite Idli Melon Melody which had the dense idlis contrasting texturally with two types of juicy melons. The dish also had crunchy pine nuts and was drizzled with togarashi spiced Japanese mayo. A simple dish but who would have thought of bringing idlis together with a juicy fruit – a fabulous idea! With each bite, the melons burst in your mouth dousing the spiced idli with juice.
Nepalese Chicken Broth was like an explosion of flavours for the palate. Chicken bones are cooked for hours on slow fire and finished off with sesame paste to add a rich, creamy, nutty flavor. If this was not enough, there were noodles, vegetables and chicken bits to add to the heartiness of this soup.
Vegetable Rainbow Rolls were more visually attractive than any sushi I’ve seen. Crispy mixed vegetables were wrapped with nori sheets and beetroot juice infused rice, draped with smoked bell peppers, mayonnaise and pepper sauce and topped with onion and tomato salsa. Another refreshing treat for the palate with a little bit of Japanese and Mexican medley if you may.
Puffsome is their own invention which looks like a parcel tied at both ends and in the middle by nori sheets. The texture is like a flaky puff pastry which resembles vermicelli. We tried both chicken and mushroom and were vowed by both. With each bite, the puffsome crumbles like a good puff pastry should and you get to taste the filling.
Indian Ocean Baked Lobster has the lobster shell split into half, the lobster scooped out and tossed in curry leaf butter, cashew nuts and south Indian spices and baked in its own shell. The lobster was cooked to perfection with its sweet meat very soft and gingerly laced with south Indian flavors. This was one of the most expensive dishes on the menu and yet a steal when compared to the prices charged by other restaurants for lobsters.
Chicken Chili Oil Pot Stickers has the chicken in unique partnership with dehydrated carrot bits. The carrot bits added a nice crunchy element to the dish totally elevating it. The presentation of the dish was beautiful as the pot stickers came camouflaged under a thin, crisp rice sheet which again gave a crunchy contrast to the dish.
24 Carat Prank Chat was crisp whole spinach leaves batter fried and standing on a bed of dahi bhalla hummus drizzled with tamarind and mint chutney and (in keeping with the name of the dish) garnished with gold leaf vark. By keeping the spinach leaves standing, the chef got rid of soggy spinach leaves. Prankster had introduced the dahi bhalla frozen ice cream and now there is this dish as a further innovation on the dahi bhalla!
Pork Belly Screwers with Kalonji (onion seeds) and Raw Mango relish – as the name suggests, there were skewered, soft pork belly chunks drizzled with a sweet raw mango chutney which had mango bits. Another great pairing as pork always tastes better with a sweet sauce.
Khow Suey was served in a big bowl with the accompaniments kept on the outer rim of the custom made bowl. A very unique ingredient was the garlic chips sprinkled with lemon salt which acted like a tangy treat in the mouth. Also adding to the flavor was freshly grated lemon rind.
Japanese Curry infused Nihari with Asian Bun comprises of slow braised lamb shanks with Indian spices infused with Japanese curry. It came with a baked Asian bun which tasted really good after bathing it in the nihari. A to die for dish for a meat lover or should I say to kill for.
Chilean Sea Bass with Ginger Green Chili Sauce – perfectly grilled, soft and flaky sea bass on a bed of a ginger and chili emulsion full of flavor.
Did I mention desserts ? Ferrero Rocher Prank and Canoli are two desserts that are a must try even if you are stuffed by then.
By the way, I must mention that while the food was wooing us at one end, the exotic cocktails were playing havoc (in a nice way) on the palate on the other end. Must try cocktails are Early Morning Gin Sour (Earl Grey infused gin, orange marmalade, lavender and egg white), Japanese Negroni (Yuzu, Gari, nori sheet, sesame oil), Fatty Pig (bacon infused Bourbon, mix berry preserve and bacon crisp served on the side), Pronounce It (Gin, lemon, sugar and asafoetida) and the Shark Tank (Tequila, galangal, Yuzu, rosemary, sea salt and blue curacao).
In concluding, I have to say that, given the excellent food offerings, there is more than some enticement afoot on the part of Pra Pra Prank – with only 120 dishes on the menu, Pra Pra Prank will make sure that you come back umpteen number of times just to go through the menu in entirety before you settle down with your personal favorites.
Ratings (Out of 5)
Food: 5.0 | Ambience: 4.5 | Service: 4.5| Overall: 4.5
Meal for Two: Rs 2100 ++ | Wheel Chair Friendly: Yes | Credit Card: Yes | Alcohol: Yes |
Address: Pra Pra Prank, Shop number 24, Ground Floor, Cyberhub, sector 24, DlfCybercity, Gurgaon.
Disclaimer: This review was done on an invitation from the restaurant. Due judgement and care has been applied by the author to remain objective and unbiased in the review, but readers need to consider this review keeping this fact in mind.