When I am not travelling, I can be found indulging in good food in some part of Delhi-NCR. This week, I was happy to be back at Lodi – the restaurant after a long time. Their new menu ‘FARM TO FORK’ was the highlight of my visit.
Lodi – The garden restaurant has an endearing charm and character as it enjoys a strategic location near the key landmarks such as the Safdarjung’s Tomb, National Bonsai Museum, India Habitat Centre, India International Centre, Islamic Cultural Centre and Alliance Francaise. As an extension of the famous Lodi Gardens and bountiful neighbourhood, the restaurant offers a rich, green and botanical ambience. Sprawled over a big area of land, the restaurant has both indoor and open-air seating sections. More than the dull inside, I love their garden area with its just not so bright lights, enough spacing between the tables and romantic setup. With my husband in tow, I happily walked in to find a table for two in the garden area.
I quickly settled in and looked around to notice the hanging lamps, dim lights, subtle decors and more. I love their different seating combinations of chairs, settee, vehicles, tented sofas, etc. Everything about the place has always been elegant, low key and soft on the eyes. Not much had changed from my last visit. The menu already lay on my table and I quickly scanned through it. There were only 6 items on the list but everything about it looked healthy and organic.
There were two dishes for the appetizer and we ordered one of each. The chilled fresh green peas & mint soup had a beautiful color to it. The presentation was just perfect and even the quantity. I do not really relish cold soups but this was uniquely different. I must also confess, the first few bites did not really impress me but gradually I developed a taste for it. This isn’t for every taste bud but f you are a fan of cold soups or you love peas, this is just for you. The freshness of the ingredients could be realized with every spoonful.
Green asparagus, runner beans, swiss chard & walnut with honey & lime – Since I love asparagus, I was absolutely up for this one. My excitement was met with a whole green platter which looked extremely enticing. This assorted salad was specially made to suit the taste as well as health. The leafy texture was amazing and every ingredient tasted as fresh as it looked. The walnuts were crunchy and added a rich and nutty taste when eaten with beans and asparagus. The deep green leaves of swiss chard tossed with honey and lime made for a fabulous combination in here. For the uninitiated, I must inform that swiss chard is a beet that is grown for its leaves.
Even before I start with the elaboration on the ingredients and flavors, I must declare that all the three items in the main course were winners for me. They deserve high ratings not only because they make for healthy indulgences but also because they are uniquely convincing in their flavors as well. The ingredients were as fresh as they could be. For the pasta lovers, home made fettuccini was an indulging dish. Instead of being converted into a saucy texture, pieces of spring onion and broccoli along with fresh basil gave it a unique taste. The flat pasta was yum in itself. In my view, the cheese toppings could be easily avoided.
Shallots, sugar snap peas and baby spinach risotto with poached egg – This one impressed me for its risotto. Unlike the usual, this wasn’t cheesy. The unpolished brown rice gave it a different kick altogether. The herbs and spices popped out flavors of their own and the poached egg on the top made for a complete meal. I like shallots (from the onion family) and I could feel they added a richness to the dish. The presentation was simple and beautiful.
I ate only some portions of each dish while the rest was taken care by my hubby. I wanted to keep some room for the pan seared fish. I thought I would not be able to manage the whole of it but it was amazing and I finished it in no time. The fish was tender and juicy and the red cabbage added zing to it. The snow peas and lemon sauce added to its deliciousness. I would recommend this to everyone who likes eating fish.
‘Farm to Fork’ menu had only one dessert. The picture speaks a thousand words for this one but as an after meal, it failed to create a charishma. The fresh mint leaves looked gorgeous in the red background and I wanted it to deliver a magical taste too but to my disappointment, the icy content spoiled it for me. Maybe because I love fruit ice creams and this one nothing close to it. Maybe if I had waited for it to melt, it would have made a great drink of strawberry, mint and lime.
Outside the menu, I tried a mocktail made of pomegranate. It was a nice summer drink but high on the sweet side. Overall, it was a lovely dinner with farm grown ingredients. In my view, apart from the soup and the dessert which did not impress me, everything else was cooked perfectly to my taste and made for a truly healthful indulgence.
Do try this menu and let me know your feedback. If you have not been to Lodhi Garden, do check out this garden on the coming weekend. Delhi has many exciting eating outlets.