The smell puts you off. Instantly. I’m not sure if others, too, have this finicky trait but for me, the aroma emanating out of a shop or restaurant, or the lack of it, is a crucial factor in judging the ambience.
Anyway, Ambrosia, the newly opened Indian-Greek restaurant at Rajouri Garden’s Westgate Mall, faltered miserably on that count, as strong wafts of onion and garlic from the partially opened kitchen waded aimlessly through. The décor of the place in muted tones of browns and greys, is nothing to write home about, so it makes one pray harder that the food better be good.
Well, my prayers were answered, though not in case of every dish I ordered. The Murg Malai Kabab (Rs 280), as starters, were succulent, but how wrong can you go with something as basic as that anyway. The Galouti Kabab (Rs 340), however, were anything but how the melt-in-your-mouth Awadhi delicacy ought to be. They were chewy and hard enough to put you off galouti kababs for a long time. The Drums of Heaven (Rs300), my attempt to bring about a variation in starters, proved marginally successful. For vegetarians, I would recommend Bharwan Paneer Tikka (Rs200) – slightly heavy but good.
The main course provided me with a choice of Indian, Chinese or Greek and I chose Indian. Perhaps that’s where I made a mistake, but you can’t blame me – a sneak peak at other tables around showed that Indian is what everyone seemed to be having. I started with my basic testing parameter – the quintessential Butter Chicken (Rs 425), because if someone can’t get that right in a Punjabi dominated West Delhi eatery, they are bound to be crucified. Ambrosia passed that test as the murg makhani was rather nice, without the usual culprits of too many tomatoes or too much cream in the gravy.
The Mutton Shahi Korma (Rs 380) that accompanied the chicken was not as good, but still passable. The mix of essential spices was just right but it would have been better to go a little less on the oil.
Amidst an entertaining argument that a customer was having with the wait staff, insisting that he did not consume the Grey Goose vodka he was being billed for, I ordered for the dessert, which the staff promptly brought, not wanting to have an audience for the fight. I settled for Gulab Jamuns (Rs 80) as the choice essentially was limited to ice-creams or this hot dessert. The dessert was average, and infact that’s the word I would use for the overall experience at Ambrosia. I do intend to go again someday to try out the Greek menu and then hopefully will have better things to say.
Ambrosia, Westgate Mall, 2nd floor, Rajouri Garden
Meal for two: Rs 2,000