What a coincidence! I got a prompt from Trip Advisor to write a review for a restaurant and while I was searching my mental archives for a restaurant, came an invite to Barbeque Nation, 2nd Floor, Munshilal Building, Outer Circle Connaught Lane, New Delhi, 110001 Tel: 011 4343 4071. To celebrate his wife's birthday.
I was relieved to see a well maintained lift that took us to the second floor, because walking up the stairs at a Connaught Place building can be quite a task. Stepped out to a neatly maintained terrace that made me make a mental note to visit again in cooler weather. 8th May was hot enough to push us quickly into the air-conditioned interior of the restaurant.
We were greeted by smiling waiters who informed that we just have to identify the vegetarians, and then sit back and watch the grill being fixed into the tables, skewers loaded with tikka, seekh, fish, prawns, vegetables and fruits being placed over the fire, and then pounce on the stuff. With hindsight, I'd advise to go slow, there's always more stuff coming along. Go for seconds after tasting everything. Some of the vegetarian stuff were so good that we kept the prawns waiting. Before realizing, I was beginning to feel stuffed and I was yet to taste the main course (had to write a review, you see).
In the main course, I picked up a little bit of chicken biryani. The rice was perfect, but on the buffet the biryani lacked its classic appearance of having layers of chicken hidden under the rice. There were a few pieces on the edges, but I was not keen to have the chicken anyway. Next was steamed rice with mutton roganjosh on top and that was delicious. And since I judge all restaurants by the dal they make, I had to try the dal makhani with a naan, and both passed with flying colours just when my stomach had reached the end of its elasticity. Then I made a resolution: no sweets. Broke that after 5 minutes and tried the cheesecake and a rasgulla. Great, again. The moong dal halwa and rasmalai went untouched, despite very alluring appearance.
We had carried a cake for the occasion and the restaurant, too, had gifted us a small cake. There were two other birthday parties and the waiters eagerly joined in singing the happy birthday song. The service of all the people was so wonderful that my friend, the host, went to tip them Rs. 1,000 despite the service charge of 10% on the bill. And then came the incredible statement from the lead waiter who declined the offer with a smile and said; "We don't accept tips, Sir. There is already a service charge"! I will go back to the place for that alone, besides the great food and service.
[NOTE FOR EDITORS: Trip Advisor shows Barbeque Nation New Delhi to be at janakpuri. The one at Connaught Place, that I visited, appears not to have been updated on your system. Please make suitable changes.]
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