A recent visit to Taj Chandigarh led me to this absolutely beautiful restaurant called Dera. This a place serving authentic Punjabi cuisine. This is not actually just Punjabi, it serves food from the ages-old undivided Punjab. The Punjab that once covered the entire Pakistan as we know it today. So, there are a lot of authentic flavors here that are bound to transport one in the old Punjab full of vibrancy and vigor.
Let's talk about what all I had.
I started with the crispy platter which is basically a platter of fried Poppadoms with a yummy dip. It was a great appetizer and complimenting it was Chunkey Wali Chaas. This was a drink like none other. It was a rich and thick Chaas that was salty and had superb flavors. This is highly recommended.
Next up was masala dahi quenelles with mushroom kurkure. I delight for mushroom lovers like me. This was one hell of a snack.
Next were the show stoppers- Mushoom Malai Galouti. These were so soft and tender and had a very earthy flavor of mushroom that hit all the correct notes in the mouth. This has become my favorite dish without a doubt.
Another great starter was the Masala Malai Chaamp. Another mouth watering delicacy.
One more thing I would like to recommend would be the Santrey aur Adrakh ka Raita. Now this was an innovation by the very talented chef like all the other dishes and this was a superhit. The flavors of ginger and orange blended superbly and made me love this combination.
In the main course was Handi dal, Churan wali Bhindi and Choley. Everything was delightful and well prepared.
My dessert plate had masala jalebi with rabri and shan-e-dera. Masala jalebi is very different from normal jalebi because it had some uniue masalas topping it. Shan-e-dera was a rasmalai of sorts but it was extremely soft and tender. Very enjoyable indeed.
The restaurant is beautifully done up and the glass exterior allows one to gaze upon the plants and natural foliage on the outside. The service is par excellence and much appreciated. Overall a lovely experience and a must visit place.
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