Sunday, 7 January 2018

Taftoon Bar & Kitchen BKC | Grand Trunk Road Feast | Food Review | Restaurant Review

Taftoon means Roti in Persian but Taftoon at BKC serves so much more than just different types of Roti. Food spanning from Bengal to Kabul. Sounds a mammoth task. Bringing alive a food culture which includes mustard in fish dish as much as saffron in tandoori roti is not easy. But folks at Taftoon have done a tremendous job in creating a menu that celebrates choicest dishes from Bengal, Bihar, UP, Punjab, Haryana, Kashmir, Kabul as altogether these places make up some landmarks on the legendary Grand Trunk Route.

Ambiance is warm, golden colored, lively and has casual elegance. Smartly dressed staff is extremely polite and proactive in taking feedback for the dishes. Service is pleasant. Menu is vaaaaaast and requires at least 10 minutes of intense deliberation to zero down on what to order. Thankfully, we were given sampler portions for our review session which helped us try multiple dishes without torturing our stomach. Food is so delicious that prices are absolutely value for money as each dish is as authentic as it gets for the region specified in the menu.

Started off with outstanding appetizers-
SHATAWARI AUR KALARI - Grilled Kashmiri Kalari Cheese, Asparagus and mixed,shaved nuts -simple, crunchy, wholesome, this is Rigveda inspired!

TAFTOON WITH HARISSA GUCCHI AUR MUSHROOM- Cocktail Taftoon topped with Mushroom paste that was minced on stone, spiced with cardamom and saffron and slathered with truffle oil. It looks, smells and tastes exactly how one would expect meat mince to be! Hardcore vegetarians won't like it nor would those who hate truffle oil since its strong flavor overpowers everything else. I liked it, I love mushrooms anyway.

SOYA KI CHAAP - Soya Fillets marinated in yogurt, garlic tandoori masala, just like the previous mushroom harissa dish, this one is also very reminiscent of looking and feeling like a piece of chicken/meat. Hardcore vegetarians won't like it, good for non-veggies who want meat substitutes. Would also gain from having a bit more tandoori masala seeped in :)

MOCCHAR CUTLET - MUST HAVE, especially if you want to navigate through authentic Bengali cuisine or already love Bengali food. Hearty cutlets stuffed with banana flowers, this one is typically found during Durga Pujo festivities, absolutely smashing with the accompanying Kashundi mustard. Strong flavors. ♥♥♥

DAHI BHUTTEYAN DE KEBAB- Another MUST HAVE, unbelievably soft and scrumptious mix of hung yogurt and corn kernels shaped into a kebab, mildly spicy, do not miss on these.

CHATPATEY PANEER TIKKE - Fresh green herbs slathered all over juicy, soft paneer chunks, self explanatory, party in mouth flavors, spicy and tangy :)

MALAI BROCCOLI AUR GOBI - For those who complain of how boring broccoli is, try THIS! Delicate creamy yogurt marinade completely change the flavors here, Broccoli and Cauliflower never tasted this goooooooood :D

CHUKANDAR E SHAMMI - This one is from my grandparents' hometown-BENARES :D And if you can have just one dish here, HAVE THIS! It is impossible to believe how silky these Beetroots-Bengal Gram-Yogurt-Cheese Kebabs are. I can have these for breakfast, lunch and dinner for the rest of my life ♥♥♥

For main course, we were delighted with-
BHARWAN KADHAI - Brought back memories of childhood, my nani used to make these in winters! Whole brinjals, okra, tomatoes (stuffed with paneer) in tangy + spicy tomato-onion based thick,rich gravy.

LAL ROGANI PANEER - Vegetarian Paneer version of the famous Rogan Josh (non veg) dish in tomato-yogurt gravy, soft generous paneer chunks and stunning flavor provided by rantajyot flavored oil, could not stop eating this one.

MAA CHOLIYA DAAL - Buttery, rich, the famous Punjabi Kaali daal we have had at our Punjabi friends' houses so many times, this one is ultimate comfort food. Can drink gallons of this one :) ♥♥♥

Went perfectly well with all the different types of breads here, literally each one was superlative-

ZAFFRANI TAFTOON - Saffron and Cardamom
BAQUEARKHANI -Kashmiri specialty with poppy seeds on top
LAL NAAN - Worthy bestseller, this one is crispy, fluffy, layered, a bit sweet,very mild hint of red chillies and crunchy, MUST-HAVE,
RAMPURI PARATHA - Cashews enclosed in the dough, makes it a bit sweet too but different from lal naan, more wholesome :)
KHAMIRI ROTI - Fermented sour dough, I love this one particularly, little rolls of happiness

Special word for the magnificence of LITTI CHOKHA here! This specialty from Bihar as served here comes closest to the real deal we have ever had outside Bihar! They make Sattu from Besan in-house, the Litti (wheat circles stuffed with sattu and baked), served alongside Mashed Potato-Onion (Chokha) and smokey Brinjal..seriously, if you haven't had this dish anywhere yet, just have it here. You will thank me :) ♥♥♥

In beverages, special mention to DATES & PINEAPPLE mocktail as well as ultra refreshing HIBISCUS ICED TEA!

Not to forget, the special KASHMIRI KAHWA TEA provided at the beginning of every meal (loaded with saffron,spices,dry fruits) and Paan flavored as well as Jaljeera flavored PETHA provided at the end of every meal. Superlative!

And for the grand finale, for dessert round, we had CHENNA PLATTER- an assortment of most delicious Bengali Chenna Mithais in mini form, including gulab jamun, kheer kodom, pedha, rasmalai.. I would have 4 of this platter alone if I had not already hulked out on a feast meant for an entire army :D ♥♥♥

My family is definitely going to make multiple repeat rounds here in very near future, this place and the experience of eating here is for keeps :)

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