Restaurant Bills Explained – 2016 Version

Service Charge, Service Tax, Value Added Taxes – We bet they have got you all confused. Here is a layman’s guide for understanding & making sense of our Eating out bills.

Menu prices may seem very deceptive once you get the final bill in hand. Suddenly there is a barrage of taxes and charges staring in your face which you cannot make any sense of, however still are supposed to pay. Here is a guide that we have put together, which may help you in making any semblance of your eating out bills.

Difference between Tax and Charge

Charge is not fixed by anyone and outlets are free to write whatever percentage they deem fit on the menu. You can protest against it sure – if you do it before eating, it would be like haggling for the price of food and if you do it after eating it’s similar to you refusing to pay the bill if you are not satisfied with it. Service Charge is the most common charge applied in India and ranges from 5 – 15% of the total bill, 10% being the most common number in industry. Charge is something which is part of the revenue of the restaurant – what they do with it is their prerogative.

Continue reading “Restaurant Bills Explained – 2016 Version”

Where to eat Tandoori Momos in Delhi? Top recommendations by Foodiye

If rising popularity of momos was not surprising enough, we Dilliwalas decided to give them our own twist – like everything else we put them on skewers and grilled them in Tandoor. An original creation of Delhi, these are one of the HOTTEST selling food items these days.

This list will be helpful if you are yet to try them or you are a fan – Lets keep it simple and get down to the recommendations we have received from Foodiye.

Where to eat Tandoori Momos in Delhi? 

The list is in no particular order. If you click on picture you will be taken to the original post about those momos – where you can ask the Foodiye for more information, reviews and feedback if you need.

If you find any of the recommendations helpful, do thank the original poster on Foodiye.com.

Please do share your recommendations and pictures as well, would love to update this list and make it more comprehensive.

  1. This one has multiple recommendations and pictures look super awesome. Though we have featured this image from Green Dot, you can see more here & here from this Vegetarian outlet in Sector 10 market of Dwarka.

    This is best momos from dwarka sector 10 market shop name GREEN DOT. He have lots of variety in tandoori momos.
    This is best momos from dwarka sector 10 market shop name GREEN DOT. He had lots of variety in tandoori momos.
  2. Hunger Strike from very busy Amar Colony Market of South Delhi has the greatest number of recommendations across our platforms.

    Nothing can beat the gem of tandoori momos. Veg Tandoori Momos from Hunger Strike, Amar Colony Market, Lajpat Nagar - 4
    Nothing can beat the gem of tandoori momos. Veg Tandoori Momos from Hunger Strike, Amar Colony Market, Lajpat Nagar – 4
  3. WOW Momos are the upmarket players and can be found in various hotspots of town. Their hygiene levels and prices are slightly higher than your average street joint.

    Chicken and Cheeze pan seared momos and tandoori momos @WowMomos
    Chicken and Cheeze pan seared momos and tandoori momos @WowMomos
  4. North West Delhi – Rohini / Pitampura belt is a hot bed for these tandoori delights. Giri Momos from Pitam  Pura make it to the list.

    Qd likes but at giri momos pitampura. Best version of tandoori momos.
    Qd likes but at Giri momos pitampura. Best version of tandoori momos.
  5. This one is an age-old classic – they very well might be the people who started and made Tandoori momos such a rage. You can savor QD’s version at their restaurants in South as well as North Campus of Delhi University.

    Heavenly Bite - Tandoori veg momos at QD's
    Heavenly Bite – Tandoori veg momos at QD’s
  6. If you happen to be in Faridabad, this  small joint in Sector 17 HUDA Market, TMOS – comes highly recommended.

    The best tandoori Momos you can get in Faridabad, without any dripping Mayo, or any another dip.
    The best tandoori Momos you can get in Faridabad, without any dripping Mayo, or any another dip.

Kake Da Hotel- Best Butter Chicken, Really?

If you ask anyone or check any of the listing sites or Google where to have best Butter Chicken in Delhi or unearth the of list top ten Butter Chickens in Delhi, invariably the much famed Kake De Hotel will crop up!

Delhi is synonymous with Butter Chicken! And the true blue Delhite I am,  I constantly crave good butter chicken & butter naan! It has to be one of my favourite comfort foods especially when I want to drown my sorrows in some butter 😛

The comfort food
Butter Chicken- the ultimate comfort food
If you ask anyone or check any of the listing sites or Google where to have best Butter Chicken in Delhi or unearth the of list top ten Butter Chickens in Delhi, invariably the much famed Kake De Hotel will crop up!
So yesterday was one of those when I needed some sinful indulgence and landed up at THE Kake De Hotel during the early lunch hours!  As I walked up the stairs, I noticed the wall was lined with framed certificates and wasn’t surprised at all to find lots of travelers seated there who sure where there to tick this in their bucket list! There were some locals as well who were enjoying their fill.
*Warning*  If you aren’t comfortable with dirty dingy places, don’t when bother to go for a meal, like most dhabas the sights aren’t very pleasing! Oh but the good part is they have some full power air conditioning! Nonetheless as soon as we were seated, a plate full of onions topped with green chutney and some masala was placed on our table- even before the water 😉 Well dhabas are your real QSRs- quick service restaurants.
Fresh & Tangy
Fresh & Tangy

We had a clear agenda and ordered half plate butter chicken  (Rs 340+) with butter naan and tandoori roti without without batting an eyelid! And within couple of minutes the food arrived, the breads looked fresh & crispy. The Butter Chicken looked sad with no trace of butter or that gorgeous creamy gravy- it almost looked like the humble dhabha style chicken curry! First bite and i was heart broken, the gravy was watery with boiled tomatoes & onion with some oil thrown on top! Well that is not how butter chicken is supposed to be. It lacked the tangy kick or the silkness that is achieved by cooking it well with butter or cream! The chicken was tender and well cooked though.

By no standards it can be called a butter chicken- to make sure it wasn’t the chicken curry we checked with the server who told us that  a big pot of the dish is made in one go and they serve from it throughout the day, so no customisation was possible. Also that they do keep the dish non spicy or bland purposely- which i wasn’t surprised to hear as the places is very popular among the tourists.
Feast
Feast
Best Butter Naan ever
Best Butter Naan ever
Tandoori Roti
Tandoori Roti – very nicely done.
Lacha Parantha
Lacha Parantha
Seeing that we weren’t happy with the food the server quickly asked if we would like to have something else instead of the butter chicken – without wasting any time we  ordered dahi meat which was listed as Rogan Josh( Rs. 200+)  and Dal Makhni (Rs. 90+)
The Dal Makhni was kickass in one word, well cooked and utterly creamy without the heavy use of cream & butter- a consistency that is achieved if the lentils are simmered with spices for a long time! It has to be one of the best dal makhni i have ever tasted. I will for sure go back for my Dal Tandoori Roti combo &  pyaaz chutney  fill!
Dal 2
Look at the beauty
Since we had no high expectations- the dahi meat tasted decent, the meat was tender & it had that dhabha curry type of thin gravy! Again there was nothing Rogan Josh about it- neither the taste nor the colour!
Dahi Meat
Dahi Meat
I wonder how can people recommend KDH for butter chicken? Has the place lost its sheen over the years and now banking on the inflow of the tourists who clearly have no idea what a good butter chicken is about? The meal left me questioning what makes a good butter chicken, is there any standard recipe or every restaurant/dhabha  over the years has developed its own style?

Where to eat Chhole Bhature in Delhi? Top 35 Places you MUST Try

Chhole Bhature are the National Food of India, and you get them around every corner in the city. Though Chhole Bhature can never be bad, however there are some which are better than others. Here is a list of 35 places divided by the region to help you savor nothing but the best from the City.

Chhole Bhature are ‘National’ food of Delhi and to celebrate our love for the same we mark 2nd October of every-year as International Eatlo Chhole Bhature Day, with 2016 seeing the third year of celebrations. As lot of you know that we organised Eatlo Eatups – where a bunch of us got together and went to out eat and/or explore the food scene.

However for this day we put together something called #VirtualEatup – where people from all over the world participate by eating Chhole Bhature and sharing pictures on Social Media.

International Chhole Bhature Day : How to participate?

1. You can cook the bhature at home and post a picture and/or recipe.
2. You can go out to eat Chhole Bhature and post a picture with your feedback.
3. You can eat Chhole Bhature from your favourite joint and just share a picture.
4. You can get them packed and bring them to eat and share a picture.
5. You can organise a Chhole Bhature Party, cook Chhole Bhature and invite your friends over. Or order in maybe.

For those in Delhi, which happens to be home of Chhole Bhature, we have put together a list of our favourite places from all over the town – have visited all of them personally and can recommend the wares. This list is not comprehensive for sure, however still the most comprehensive you will find.

Not putting complete details, a quick google search for names would guide you better. The map mostly is for illustrative purposes, just search for the name of google maps and they shall guide you better.

Info-graphic with Chhole Bhature joints represented on Delhi Map.
Best Chhole Bhature Delhi Map

Best Chhole Bhature in North Delhi :

  • Chache Di Hatti, Kamla Nagar (read more)
  • Om Di Hatti, Shakti Nagar
  • Rawalpindi, Malka Ganj, Kamla Nagar
  • Cycle Wala, Outside NDPL, Hudson Lane (read more)
  • Chacha di Hatti, Model Town (Not related to Kamla Nagar one)
  • Gopal Jee, Rohini Sector 2
  • Ashu Bhature, Rohini
  • Hari Om Bhature, Rohini / Prashant Vihar

BEST CHHOLE BHATURE IN West Delhi

BEST CHHOLE BHATURE IN South Delhi

  • Kaka Ji, Amar Colony
  • Baba Nagpal, Amar Colony, Lapjpat nagar
  • Anand, Lajpat Nagar
  • Sharma (cart), Moolchand Metro Station
  • Durga Sweets, Nauroji Nagar
  • Gopal Jee Chhole Bhature, Govind Puri

BEST CHHOLE BHATURE IN East Delhi 

BEST CHHOLE BHATURE IN Central Delhi

Central Delhi is where the heavyweights of Chhole Bhature operate from..

This list was originally published in October 2015, on occasion of 3rd International Eatlo Chhole Bhature Day, and has been revised on 2nd November 2016. The recommendations remain the same, however we have been able to document a lot more about these places in last 1 year and have updated the recommendations with relevant links to our posts on Foodiye.

Where to eat Keema Meat Curry & Rice in Delhi? – Gullu Meat Waala

First time heard about Gullu meat when they had opened shop in Neta Ji Subhash Place in Pitam Pura. However the feedback was not so great and was told by my meat eating friends that the name has lost glory and NSP one is mere a bad copy of the original somewhere in North Delhi. Plus there was never feedback exciting enough for me to visit the original one as well.
However all that changed this weekend when a friend told about her father being fan of Gullu’s meat and knowing how much of a meat eater and lover he is, it was difficult for me to curb my excitement.
Landed up at their Malka Ganj outlet which apparently is right next to North Campus of Delhi university. Google maps here would serve you very well, just in case its barely 100-200 meters from Bungalow Road.
The menu looked simple enough – Keema Meat, Keema Kaleji, Chicken Keema, Meat Keema Rice along with Tikka, Tandoori etc. In vegetarian it has Dal Makahni, Mutter Paneer, Raita, Pulao and Mutter Paneer rice. All dishes came in 3 sizes – priced from Rs. 150 to 360.
Keema Meat Rice, Keema Meat Curry from Gullu
Abundance
We ordered a medium sized Keema Meat curry which in their menu would be ‘regular’, along with a portion of Keema Meat Rice which come in a single size. In breads ordered a Masala Parantha and couple of Tandoori rotis.
They do not ‘serve’ you at this outlet, its a takeaway joint with no provision to dine, not even a solitary table to stand and eat. I guess its more to do with a booze shop right next door, the guys at Gullu have to stay clean unless they want to invite trouble from authorities.
But that does not mean you cannot park and eat there, infact that is how lot of patrons get their fill – in their cars or on their bikes, just like we decided to roll.
First thing I noticed in my package was abundance of Chutney and Pyaz. Just taking them out one after the other set the mood right and left a great impression.
Coming to the Keema Meat Curry – It was not oily at all with keema being hand grounded which means a chunky meaty gravy. The mutton pieces were well cut, cooked in a way that they were not falling from bone but were still tender & melt in mouth, which is unlike many places that serve fibrous and chewy meat these days. The spices were perfectly balanced and should suit all the palettes. No overpowering or strong flavors – just a light, flavorful infusion.

Keema Meat Rice

Roti and Parantha
Same Keema Meat curry was used in rice as well. Rice were perfectly cooked and there was good quantity of gravy seeped till the deeper part of the container.
Masala Parantha that we ordered was surprisingly unique and well made. I was expecting a normal laccha parantha which would have some masala on top, but this one turned out to be different, very different. The parantha was stuffed with some masala that seemed to be mix of various things but dominated by methi. Tasted very nice with the meat curry.
Masala Parantha

I guess we would all agree that in such meals chutney and pyaz play a very important role, and the quality of these two things from Gullu made an already tasty experience into a superlative one. The chutney was thick and thankfully was not curd based.  The onions were well cut, fresh and crunchy – just what was needed to complete the meal.

 

Chutney and Pyaz
Details menu of Gullu along with Phone numbers.
It all costed us Rs. 484 which does not seem to be much for the kind of experience that we had.
Surely goes in the list of gems of Delhi. The closest competition would be legendary Ashok meat from Sadar Bazaar while Deena Meat of Gurgaon would be like a poor cousin of this kickass place!

MTR : Mavalli Tiffin Rooms : Sunday Lunch Experience

After hearing so many things about the Thali at MTR (Bangalore), finally landed at their old-school LalBagh outlet to have a first hand experience of the meal and today being Sunday, it was supposed to be something special.Rs.220 for a Thali for which we got a coupon in advance and the wait was about 30 minutes for our turn. What followed was a multi course meal which truly was an experience in itself.

First course was dosa along with a sweet puran poli type bread, then bisibele bhat, Sambhar rice, rasam rice and curd rice being the last course followed by a very nice dessert.

Grape Juice to start the proceedings.
Veg Kurma
Coconut Chutney
Salad, don’t know the name. Carrot and lentils.
Beetroot ki subzi.
That said I don’t think I would be going back for the same – the main reason being that the service staff lacked the intent to feed and seemed to be going through the motions. More concerned about completing the process rather than feeding you.

 

Dosa, only thing I was offered twice.
The Sweet Puran Poli like bread.
Mirchi Bhajji
Payasam
Raita with Bisibele Bhaat
Sambhar Rice
Curd Rice
The system of serving itself needs lot of improvement (some lessons from Gujrati / Rajasthani counter parts in serving Thalis maybe) which currently is designed to create queues of waiting customers rather than serving them well. The hygiene takes utmost importance for these guys as can be judged by the confidence with they have designed the customer’s exit path through their cooking area. giving customers a full view of proceedings and how clean the kitchen actually is.
But for someone like me everything goes for a toss if I do not enjoy the ‘love’ and warmth behind me meal and today unfortunately was one of those days.
Taste 7/10,
Value for money 9/10,
Service 5/10.
Ambiance 9/10 for the old School Charm
PS : Btw.. this is for their Thali only, the same service attitude might work perfect when they are serving their regular idlis and dosas which essentially is a fixed serving size. In that system diner does not expect anything nor he/she is at the mercy of server.

Where to eat finest Kebabs & Biryani in Delhi?

Those are the really small structures on the pavements of Central Delhi selling Chai, Sutta and Snacks to the Babus working in those corridors of power. Most of those NDMC stalls are quite basic – Chai, Samosa, Kachori, Bread Pakore, Fruits, Biscuits, Cold-drinks, Juices etc. However not too far from palatial Presidential Estate in Delhi, next to Assam Bhawan, right in the diplomatic corridors is located a small stall, that does not bear any name, is poorly lit and is something that is very easy to miss. Nothing that would separate it from those quintessential stalls in Central Delhi.

And the answer is NOT Old Delhi. Read on… 🙂

Those who are familiar with Delhi, would know what NDMC stalls are. Those are the really small structures on the pavements of Central Delhi selling Chai, Sutta and Snacks to the Babus working in those corridors of power. Most of those NDMC stalls are quite basic – Chai, Samosa, Kachori, Bread Pakore, Fruits, Biscuits, Cold-drinks, Juices etc. However not too far from palatial Presidential Estate in Delhi, next to Assam Bhawan, right in the diplomatic corridors is located a small stall, that does not bear any name, is poorly lit and is something that is very easy to miss. Nothing that would separate it from those quintessential stalls in Central Delhi.

However if you are there in the evening hours, and pay close attention, you will find a beeline of cars standing next to it. Fancy cars are not very uncommon in that part of the town, however spend a moment or two, and you will see a steady stream of food flowing from the ubiquitous looking stall to those cars. Welcome to Al-Kauser. Or rather one of the outlets of Al-kauser which has developed into a much bigger chain now which has successfully spread its kebab fueled wings, atleast in Delhi.

A closer look at the stall of Al Kauser
Inside the stall
Making Varqi Parantha

We will let the chain do what it does and focus our energies on this particular outlet, you might call me a romantic, but this little stall selling kebabs and Biryanis has managed to charm me..

Some of the dishes I have tried and liked there :

~ Galauti Kebabs : As melt in mouth as they are supposed to be by virtue of their name, they serve 4 round (tikki type) kebabs in a plate, and I doubt if its possible to make them any finer. Aficionados might draw comparison from here and there, but that would be matter of individual taste. Tunday Kebabi from Lucknow (they now have a chain in Delhi), Rajendra da Dhaba and some of the finer restaurants in town can only claim to touch this beauty served by Al Kauser. That said, I would not be surprised if Alkauser guys manage to beat everyone else in sheer finesse of flavors and spices.

Galauti Kebabs

~ Kakauri : Again, melt in mouth, they serve 2 of them seekhs in a plate and are just slightly different from the Galautis in the way they are spiced. Personally I am not able to find much difference in their texture. The kakoris that I have eaten here are at par with best in business from Delhi – Al Quresh and Aap Ki Khatir are the other two names that come to my mind and the line separating them three is so thin that it is virtually non-existent. Honestly speaking would not be surprised if someone told me that Kebabchis working at these three eateries are fruits of the same tree or trained under the same Ustad, the Master Kebab maker.

~ Varqi Parantha : This calorie bomb is a perfect companion for those kebabs, Layers of shallow fried goodness, it has slightly sweet flavor, which surprisingly goes very well with both the above mentioned kebabs. Calorie conscious brethren can always opt for roomali rotis.
Varqi Parantha

~ Biryani : Now this can be a show stopper for many. They serve Chicken and Mutton Biryani in a Handi, complete with a lid, sealed by dough. I am assuming that they put partially done rice and meat in the handi, seal it and then put it inside a tandoor or in a bhatti, where it spends some time. The process is called ‘Dum’ lagana, where various flavors from meat, spices and rice infuse among themselves. The lid is sealed with dough allowing nothing to escape from that handi. Ask then to serve you the Handi itself as opening it would release the aromas of extremely hot and well made delicacy and it is something that one must experience. Here let me warn you – they do not serve any salan, or raita with their biryani, and honestly speaking I have never felt the need for one too.

Handi of Mutton Biryani
Mutton Biryani served in a plate
Sealed Handi of Biryani

~ Chicken Malai Tikka : Generally Malai Tikkas are white in color and creamy in taste, however the ones I have eaten here are more on the charred side, slightly overdone to give that taste and colors but just enough to make sure they still have some moisture left in them.

I was really surprised when I was told that people have been coming here from 70’s and now feel that the place is way past of golden years, but then that is something that I have heard about every legend. I feel generally when people get bored of someplace OR there are slight changes, that is when that accusation or tag of being past the best comes.Honestly speaking have never really paid attention to the prices so cannot comment on them, however last time I was there we had 2 portions of kakori, 2 paranthas and a biryani – we paid close to Rs. 800, which would not put it under cheap category, however with the kind of food they serve, I do not mind paying that kind of money.

Talking about service, I doubt if they know H of hospitality. If you are in a car, blow your horn and one of the boys would be there to fetch your food. If you are outside the car, then do not expect them to listen to you, seems like they are just too used to horns.

Kebabs and Tikkas being roasted..

That said if you go there in colder months, make sure you step out of your car, or otherwise put your air-conditioner to external mode just to get a whiff of those goodies being roasted on coal fire. Very rustic, Very delicious.

PS : This post if of my experience of the Malcha Marg outlet, cannot say much about other more shiney branches. And much thanks to Nitin Seth paah ji for introducing me to this joint.

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