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Home Hyderabad Food Pages

Hyderabad Food Pages

When in Rome do as the Romans do goes the old saying. Many Indians who have travelled to Singapore, Malaysia, Japan, China and Thailand have tasted the local cuisines. Some of them may have lapped it up and looked for such restaurants when back in the city. Many restaurants offer Pan Asian cuisine but the Thai Pavilion at Vivanta by Taj, Begumpet is the only restaurant that offers exclusive and authentic Thai food.

The Thai Pavilion opened its doors in Hyderabad more than three years ago under the personal supervision of Chef Ananda Solomon. Chef Ananda was instrumental in introducing the Thai cuisine to the country with the original Thai Pavilion at Mumbai, in the early 90’s. Before the launch, he spent many months across Thailand experiencing and studying its cuisine and culture. He has personally trained people in preparing Thai delicacies.

Taking one flight up from the lobby for the Thai Pavilion, I entered the restaurant and was greeted by the culture and tradition of Thailand through handcrafted walls and ceiling fretworks each with their own distinct style. The beautiful interiors have been done by Thom Catallo. The advantage at the Thai Pavilion is the Open Kitchen which makes you feel closer to the cooking team and increases your appetite. There are young and vintage wines aesthetically displayed against the red and golden wall. If you are keen in relishing your food the traditional way there are some tables with lower seating. At any given time, the restaurant can accommodate 60 guests.

Speaking about the menu at the Thai Pavilion, Executive Chef Arjun Yadav says: “The menu opens with exciting entrees, Herbed Yellow Tofu with Betel Leaf, Katuri Flower with Sweet Sour Sauce, Stir-fried Squid with Thai Yellow Chilli, Crispy Duck with Stir-fried Spinach.” Arjun adds, “Show stealers in the menu are innovative recipes like Duck Liver, Foie Gras with Mango Sauce, Grilled Scallops with Sugarcane reduction and Steamed John Dory Fish with Lemon Garlic Sauce.”

According to the chef one must try the Green Thai curry, tempered with coconut milk and flavoured with lime leaves and unripe green peppercorns. “Not to forget the Classical Thai Red curry favourite with loyalists, as is the Papaya Salad,” says Arjun.

Coming to the deserts, there are plenty of choices such as Water Chestnut Creme Brulee, Chocolate Log with Lemon Grass, or the warm Chocolate Soufflé with Thai Ginger a (Poached Water Chestnuts in Coconut Milk) signature dessert that was introduced and made popular in the kitchens of Thai Pavilion. “In Thai Pavilion’s kitchen each dish is endowed with subtlety and refinement, and its presentation is enhanced by delicately sculptured mangoes, watermelons, pumpkins, radishes, tomatoes, chillies and root ginger. The special combination of herbs and spices used in preparing Thai dishes is what gives Thai food its very distinctive character and they are sourced from Thailand,” says the chef.

Chef Arjun says: “Thai Pavilion witnesses a large turnout during the weekends, while on weekdays it is frequented by regulars who love Thai food or corporates who want to entertain their guests.” The chef adds that the Thai food is slowly catching on with the people of Hyderabad.

Arjun shares that Tollywood baddie and character actor Prakash Raj loves Thai food and whenever he is in town, a parcel from the restaurant always goes to him. “For the first time, we served Thai food outside the restaurant and it was for none other than the fashion designer Asmita Marwah,” says Arjun.

The restaurant is open for lunch from 12 noon to 3 PM and for dinner from 7.30 PM to midnight. On an average a meal will cost Rs. 1250 exclusive of wine.

 

 

For celebrating Special Days, like birthdays, anniversaries, or a promotion, one would like to go to a hatke (different) restaurant. Do you agree or not? Well, to satisfy that kind of a desire, one can step into Ohri’s Gufaa in Basheerbagh close to Abids. As you take the lift to the restaurant situated on the second floor, you would come across many diners at the cuisine court. To the right of the lift is Gufaa, push the door and the ambiance there resembles a jungle.

As you enter, what comes to your mind is your History lesson that man for many years lived in caves. One must agree that it is in the caves that many of our favourite hair raising adventure stories are set. Ohri’s Gufaa recreates the caves for you. Lighting your way in with mashaals, surrounding you with stone, seating you on old world cane chairs, and serving you a repost fit for royalty. What’s more, when waiters dressed as hunters come to your table, the experience is like none other!

Divided into three sections, along with my guest, I took the middle section. Seated comfortably, we had a look at the menu. Honestly, in the dim lights, one had to strain to look at the menu. To begin with, I ordered a fruit punch mocktail, an all-time favourite drink with a sweet blend of a variety of fruits juices topped with fresh cream, while my guest ordered Tamatar Shorba, a delicious soup of tomatoes, cumin apples and green coriander with a hint of lemongrass, garnished with cracking crisps. Coming to starters, looking at the menu, one could agree that there were many choices to spoil. We ordered Dhudhiya Paneer, something that I had never had before and Makai Chatpata.

Biting into the Dudhiya Paneer, which was rounded of paneer with spiced potatoes, shallow fried and finished on dum, was yummy. Makai Chatpata as the name suggested was crispy corn peppers tossed in roasted spices, were cooked to perfection and though named spicy, there was no running eyes. We were asked to try out the Cheese and Vegetable Kurkuri, spiced cheese wrapped in thin warqi of wheat dough crispy fried and served with tomato relish. For those of you, who go in a gang of four, instead of ordering variety cuisines, you can try the Kebab Sampler Veg. Some of the other varieties included Hara Bhara Kebab, Cheese Chilli Kebab, to name a few. One was treated to strumming of the guitar while dining.

In the mains, the curry, Subz Gufaa, sounded very special. It was carrots, beans, potatoes, peas and tomatoes, delicately cooked in chatpata yellow gravy. For those who are conscious about oil, then try out the olive oil based Chowgra, which is Hyderabadi style stir fried vegetables with coriander and garam masala. Among the rotis, I have always loved butter naan, but this time for a change I savoured Cheese Naan, while my guest relished it with Tandoori Butter Roti. However, for a group, an assortment of rotis would be fun. If I had been a little more alert, being at a Punjabi restaurant, I would not miss out the Pindi Chole.

Coming to the third course, one gorged on the Hyderabadi speciality, the Vegetable Biryani. An exquisite combination of English vegetables, paneer, aromatic basmati perfumed with saffron and cooked on dum. For the non-vegetarians, there was Murgh Dum Biryani and Gosht Dum Biryani. One could also order Jeera/Mutter/Subz Pulao or Steamed Rice. However, there was not much choice in Daals, except the Yellow Dal Double Tadka and the regular Punjabi specialty Dal Makhani.

In the dessert section, what caught fancy was Sakori Phirni. Phirni, one was aware of but, when Sakori Phirni, then realised that it was grounded basmati cooked with sweetened milk and pista gratings, served in traditional earthenware – Sakora. My guest lapped up the Sizzling Brownie, walnut brownie on sizzler served with a scoop of Vanilla ice cream and chocolate sauce. The others on the menu included Matka Kulfi, Khubani Ka Meetha, Gulab Jamun, Mulayam Rasmalai, Lava Lava and Ice Creams.

Well for those, who want to party hard, there is Scotch whisky, Brandy, Dark Rum, Champagne & Sparkling Wine, Red/White Wine, Beer and others. There are cocktails and Quenchers too, which are very cool too. Quenchers are secret recipes to make one special. Some of them are Chatka Orange, Mix of Anu, Cranberry Delight, Love Berry and Coriander & Pudina Twist. We tried the Coriander & Pudina Twist, a tangy mix of coriander, mint, lime and ginger with soda. If you want to make it more special, you can add vodka or white rum for some extra money and you would love it.

If all the above are the specialties for vegetarians, what is it for non-vegetarians, here it Gufaa. Don’t worry, there are lots of varieties for them too.  In the Starters for non-vegetarians, there is Lahori Chicken Tikka, Murgh Chandi Tikka, Lashoni Dhania Murgh, Kalmi Kebab, Talwar Kebab (yellow), Tandoori Murgh, Mutton Seekh Kebab, Raan-E - Sikandari, Mutton Tawa Boti Kebab, Pathar Ka Gosht, Fish Tikka, Amritsari Fish, Lal Tandoori Jhinga, to name a few. Makhanwala Murgh, Kadai Chicken, Murgh Tikka Masala, Murgh Khurchan, Methi Murgh, Murgh Kalimirch, Dum Murgh Ka Stew Chicken, Rogan Josh Dehli, Gosht Jehangiri, Fish Tikka Masala, Jhinga Labardar are some of the choices in the main course.

ASAP! The Bistro, centrally located at Hitech City Main Road, brings in a fresh new perspective on the culinary extravaganza of the city by offering the finest delicacies from various parts of the world. What does ASAP stand for here? It is not what is commonly known, but it is As Social As Possible. ASAP! The Bistro is a warm lively place designed to help one unwind with friends and loved ones with a seating capacity of over 100 people.

ASAP! The Bistro with its colourful interiors combined with Pop Art and Comic theme is a perfect place for a relaxing lunch or dinner with exceptional live music and fun games. “The menu has been intelligently crafted with a careful selection of mouth-watering dishes from across the world. The restaurant takes the guest on a culinary journey by creating flavours that leaves ones palate absolutely delighted,” says Rehan Guha, owner ASAP! The Bistro and Managing Partner, Rooshi Hospitality.

Guha, popular food connoisseur with more than a decade of national and international experience in the Hospitality industry, says: “The Bistro has been established to create a perfect restaurant for the people of Hyderabad to socialise and unwind in a cool and welcoming ambiance. It is an ideal place to play, drink, meet friends and unwind.”

Settling down after soaking in the ambiance, we started off our luncheon with Mocktails and our choice of Fruit Mojito was excellent. It was a mixture of green apple, green apple syrup, lime wedges, mint, castor sugar and soda water. Of course there is a lot of choice in mocktails from Lichi Rich, Guava Mary, Mango Colada, Crushed Chocolate Milk shake and Peach iced tea. The restaurant also serves other drinks too.

As it was difficult to choose the starters, we were offered a variety of starters. There was the Paneer Shahslik Skewers, grilled green Harisha marinated cottage cheese, bell pepper and onion served with yogurt dip. One also tasted the Crispy Vegetables – Golden fried vegetables tossed with garlic and green chillies, Nachos – Tortilla chips piled with cheese, tomato, onion and jalapenos served with salsa and sour cream. However, what one loved was the simple Onion Rings, which were golden fried rings of onion rubbed with Cajun spices served with chef’s special dip.

Moving to the Main section, there is a choice of Pastas & Risottos, Rice or Noodles. In the Rice or Noodle section, there is Fiery Shcezwan Sauce, Thai Curry Green/Red, Mongolian Rice bowl, with a choice of vegetarian, chicken and fish. There is also Lamb Kheema Pulao served with raita and papad, and for those who don’t want to miss the Hyderabadi specialty, Biryani, there is a choice of vegetable, chicken and lamb. For the lovers of sizzlers, there is Bread Crumbed Potato Steak Sizzlers served with herbed rice, sauté veg and tomato cream sauce. The non-vegetarians can dig into Chicken Steak and Fish Sizzlers.

In the Pastas & Risottos section, a rich creamy Alfredo sauce tossed with pasta, Alfredo is available with Vegetables and Chicken. Among the other choices in this section, there is Pesto Pasta Chicken, Lamb Stew Risotto, Lasagna, Zucchini and Minto Risotto for vegetarians and non-vegetarians. If you are looking for the Chef’s special in the main section, there is Boston Baked Vegetable, Vegetable and Kidney Bean Pot Stew, Chef Special Baked Fish Basa or Murrel and Grilled Cilantro Fish Basa or Murrel.

Of course for the young kids, there is a wide choice of thin crust pizzas and for the people on the move there are Burgers and sandwiches. In the Desserts, the obvious choice was Pancake with Chocolate Mousse, with hot chocolate dripping – a chef’s special. The other options include Warm Dark Chocolate and Mocha Fudge Cake, Bites of heaven, cheese cake and every child’s favourite, the ice cream.

Driving home after a late night show at a multiplex, I noticed Midnight Buffet Banner at multi-cuisine restaurant Lazeez outside Royal Reve Hotel. Having hunger pangs, along with my friend I dropped in to have a quick grab. But what caught my attention was a yummy feast at such an hour and close to 15 people were enjoying the meal. Being a Friday night, on the menu were delicious food items. To make things easier, the executive at the hotel was guiding guests in the choice of food for the vegetarians and non-vegetarians.

Even at that unearthly hour, food lovers can start a meal with a soup and variety of salads, especially three for the vegetarians. Of course there was the regular vegetable biryani, paneer curry, dal and subzi. One could relish these with hot, hot phulkas. If you are not satisfied with the vegetable biryani and want something more, you can try out the flavoured rice or with the plain rice try out the tangy sambar along with crispy papads. Even the hot spicy rasam can be had in a hot cuppa.

Well, the executive informed that for the non-vegetarians, there were two kinds of biryanis – mutton and chicken and one curry apart from these. Of course for the lazy bones, there was curd rice which could be savoured with pickle or just have plain curds. For those with the sweet tooth, there were choices to spoil. One hot dessert – the Gulab Jamun, two cold desserts and two ice creams that change from time to time. For the health conscious, there were fruits and some of them were taking fruits and loading ice-cream over it. For crazy dosa lovers, the restaurant dishes out dosas even at that hour. All this sumptuous food is available from Monday to Friday for Rs. 400 per person with all inclusive. However, the weekend Midnight Buffet costs Rs. 500 per person all inclusive with added attraction of Kheema Pav and one extra cold dessert.

Enjoying the midnight buffet, I decided to drop in again to savour a normal lunch at the restaurant that offers North Indian, South Indian, Hyderabadi and Chinese food. Enlightening me on the Midnight Buffet, General Manager Sanjay Tripathi said: “This has been opened recently to cater to people working on night shifts in BPOs, or for people wanting to enjoy good food after a movie, young couples and sometimes some in-house guests, who have checked in late. Interested people can have an impromptu party here too. However, no liquor is served during this time.”

The general manager shared that the three-year-old restaurant dished out four meals in a day, albeit all buffet. “We start with Breakfast Buffet that contains European, Continental, North and South Indian cuisine spread priced at Rs. 220 for adults and Rs. 150 for children. Lunch is served between 12 to 3 PM, Dinner starts at 7 PM and counter closes at 11.30

PM and opens for Midnight Buffet from midnight and is on till 2.30 AM.”

Tripathi further said: “For guests throwing a party, we have a special room which can accommodate 16 people and a larger group can t

ake on the banquet halls.” On the menu front, the general manager said: “We change our menu and rates once a yea

r. At the same time, we do not repeat the same menu for at least a week. We carry out a dedicated survey to know what the customer wants before making changes.”

He proudly said that the restaurant offered five star hotel food at reasonable prices. “There are close to 70 guests at lunch time and 80 – 100 for dinner. Some offices have lunch parties too,” Tripathi shared.

I began my lunch with a card

inal punch, followed by vegetarian clear

soup with spicy crispy starters of baby corn, bhutani veg and panner chilli 65. Getting on the main curries, aloo shimla mirch, bhindi do piyaza and palak paneer along with butter naan was tasty. On the dessert front, there was an Arabian delight that caught fancy along with rasmalai.

Step into Rotis, multi-cuisine vegetarian fine dining restaurant, situated on the second floor of Hardik Crown Building, Hitech City, just bang opposite Cyber Pearl, and the ambiance will bowl you over. It is simple and purely vegetarian to the core. Started by two youngsters Chinna and Shravan, Rotis opened its door to the public in March 2013. Since then there has been a steady flow of diners looking for good vegetarian food in the vicinity.

What has Rotis on its platter that it is drawing many to its restaurant? Primarily, the restaurant serves mainstream Indian cuisine which is also complimented with Oriental, Mexican and Continental cuisines. Rotis being located in the HiTech City caters to the software employees working in various multinational IT parks in and around the area.

Rotis offers Lunch and Dinner Buffet and ala carte to its guests. Looking at the wide variety on the platter, it is a visual and gourmet delight from children to adults. The restaurant can accommodate 115 guests at a given time. If you are going on a weekend, it is better to make an advance booking rather than be disappointed or wait for your turn. Looking at the tables, one may get the feeling that the place is overcrowded, but one can be assured that it is not such. There are many diners, who have revisited the restaurant for its good and tasty  food.  Making yourself comfortable, you can start off with mocktails. If you like something fruity, you can try the Fruit Punch or Orange Blossom, or to cool yourself, can try the Honey Cooler or Mint Storm. On the Soup front, there is a choice of South Indian, Continental, Mexican and Oriental. If you wish something spicy, you can try the Manchow Soup, Tom Yum Soup or Hot and Sour Soup. But taking the Chef’s choice, then try the Hanoi Soup. Looking for something South Indian, then order Tomato Tulsi Shorba, which will be served with Garlic Croutel?

With the soups, ordering the Starters will not be a big problem. As you leave out the regulars like Aloo 65, Paneer 65, Kesari Paneer Tikka, then spicy starters Dragon Chilly Mushroom, Texas Grilled Cottage Cheese, Paneer Majestic and Baby Corn Majestic would be the ideal choice. You can even try the Ludhiana Paneer Tikka or the Buttered Cauliflower.

If you feel you are not eating too much of paneer, then you can savour the Paneer Kurchan, which is specially made on the tava with Cottage Cheese and aromatic spices. Or try the Veg Kurchan, where vegetables are used instead of Paneer. To pep the spice quotient, you can bite into Sabji Adraki, which is a local delicacy of ginger flavoured Indian gravy cooked with vegetables. If you are looking for regulars, there is Sarsoon Da Saag and Navratna Korma. However, the chef suggests Corn Tamatar Bharta, which is creamy mince of ripe tomatoes and tender corn tempered with spices.

There is a delicious and mouth-watering Andhra spread. Spicy Bangaladumpa Pulsu, Veg Chettinadu, Andhra Mushroom Masala, Paneer Chettinadu. Among the regulars there is Gutthi Vankaya Kura and Avial curry. For the Jains, there is Butter Paneer Masala, Dal Makhani, Dal Fry and Methi Chaman. You can savour these items with plain Rotis, Naans, Butter Naans, Kulchas or have spiced rotis like onion roti, cheese naan, and so on. However, there is a basket of rotis which is an assortment. It saves you from making decisions.

In the rice section, there is Hyderabadi Vegetable Dum Biryani, Masala Vegetable Biryani, Panasakaya Biryani and the much sought after Sambar Rice. In the main course Oriental, savour the Mixed Vegetable Cashew nut, Thai Curries red or green, or even the spicy Crispy Fried Vegetable Schezwan Sauce.  Those who have a penchant to try out new things, can gorge on the Schezwan Vegetable Fried Rice, Thai Fried Rice or Shanghai Noodles, Barbecued Vegetables, Mushroom Enchiladas or Chimichangas. According to the chef, Mushroom Enchiladas, is a dish made out of soft flour tortillas rolled with cheese vegetables Enchilda sauce and melted cheese. So yummy! The other dish Chimichangas, is made of seasoned vegetables, cooked with sweet bell peppers and onion rolled in golden flaky fried tortillas.

For the children, who are not interested in rotis or rice, there is a huge range of Italian Pastas and Pizzas to choose from. In the pastas, there is Fetticucine Alfredo, Fusilli Fresco Gourmet, and in the Pizza section, regulars like Margherita Pizza, Mexican Olives and Mushroom Pizza, and among the special there is the Punjab Express Pizza.

Desserts are plenty on the platter. But try out the Assorted Kulfi plate, Rabdi with fruits, and Fried Ice Cream. If you want to stick to the favourites there is Rasmalai, Gulab Jamun, Kulfi, Royal Falooda or Chocolate Mousse.

If you have not dropped in for the main meal, there are snacks that will cater to your taste buds too. You can order sandwiches – TLC Cheese, Panner Tikka, or Rotis club sandwich. There is the usual Chole Bhatura, Ragda Patties and Punjabi Samosa.

If you are craving for spicy tangy stuff, there is a lot to choose from the chaat section. Here also there is Rotis Special Chaat, apart from Pani Puri, Bhel Puri, Tikki Chaat, Bombay Basket Chat and others.

Round this off with the liquid paan juice, which is a hit with diners here? Let us not forget to mention that service here is fine.

The restaurant is open from 12 noon to 3.30 PM for Lunch and 7 to 11 PM for Dinner.

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