Archive for Restaurant Reviews

Kailash Parbat

Place: Kailash Parbat
Location: Food-court, Forum Mall, Kukatpalli
Cuisine: Indian
Meal: Dinner

After watching a movie at PVR, amma, dad and me walked in to the humongous food-court in the Forum Mall. This place had quite a few options, and I decided to try Kailash Parbat which has been on my wish-list for a while now, while amma and dad ordered Dosas from some Dosa place.

Their menu had lot to offer, and after some thinking, I zeroed in on the Veg Combo Meal, which came with 2 Chapatis, 3 Curries, Dal, Pulav, Buttermilk and Gulab Jamoon.

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It took about 15 minutes for my order to get ready. The thali meal was well presented, and had Chole, Paneer curry and Aloo Gobi has the three curries. The Dal tasted yum with subtle flavour, while Chole was spicy and good. The paneer gravy was mild and the paneer was very soft. Aloo Gobi was a little disappointing for the gobi wasn’t fresh. The chapatis were super soft and the pulav was flavourful. The Gulab Jamoon wasn’t too sweet, which is exactly what I wanted.

Overall, a pretty good meal. On the down side, I had to shell out about 270 bucks for this meal. Nevertheless, the meal is fulfilling and tasty, so you might give it a try on your next visit to the mall.

Food: 8.5/10
Service: N/A
Ambiance: N/A
Meal for 1: ~ Rs. 270/-

Verdict: 8/10

Jashn

Place: Jashn
Location: Ahuja Estates Lane, Next to Palace Heights, Abids
Cuisine: Indian
Meal: Dinner (with amma and dad)

On Christmas, we headed out for a drive and decided to dine at Santosh Dhaba (Jaya International lane). But I realized that they opened a new restaurant next to the Santosh Dhaba Extension, and decided to try it instead. The place was packed with people waiting to get in to both Extension and Jashn. We had to wait for about 15 minutes before we were seated. On ambiance front, the place has good interiors (to give it the fine dine touch), but the tables were cramped next to each other. And there was the reverberating noise; it was like you were at a market rather than a restaurant.

Having walked in, we decided to sit through. But the surprise element was yet to be discovered – a look at their menu. They had more variety than what Santosh Dhaba offers (Italian, Chaat, etc.), but one look at the prices and you’d wonder if you walked into a star restaurant. Everything was overpriced, a Naan which would cost about 20 bucks at the Extension next door was 50! (and I’m guessing they came from the same kitchen). We somehow managed to ignore this and ordered Manchuria as starter, and Bulbul Kofta along with Roti, Aloo Paratha and Stuffed Kulcha for main course.

Jashn Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Veg. Manchuria

People at the adjacent table placed their order at the same time as us and their main course was served but our starter was yet to come; that’s how long it took for the Manchuria to be served. And after such a long wait, they turned out to be among the most terrible Manchuria I’ve ever had. Soggy and overcooked, they barely had any flavour. When we informed this to the steward, he just ignored us.

Jashn Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Bulbul Kofta

Jashn Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Aloo Paratha and Stuffed Kulcha

Thankfully, the main course didn’t take long to be served. The Kofta tasted decent, but was nothing spectacular. Roti and Aloo Paratha were alright. The Stuffed Kulcha, which is usually stuffed with cashew nuts, barely had any.

I wanted to order more, but decided against it given the mediocre food and service. Oh yea, the service – though there were waiters standing right next to our table, they wouldn’t hear us out cos it wasn’t their table (all that we had asked them was to get us a fork and some ketchup). In all, one of the most disappointing meals in recent times. Given that its’ from the house of Santosh Dhaba, it’s a bigger disappointment. Never ever coming back, and I suggest you stay away as well.

Food: 6.5/10
Service: 5/10
Ambiance: 6/10
Meal for 3: Rs. 720/-

Verdict: 5.5/10

Shubham Dhaba

Place: Shubham Dhaba
Location: Kondapur Main Road
Cuisine: Indian
Meal: Lunch (with Foodie friends)

One of my foodie friend has been long telling me about how yum the food is at Shubham Dhaba, but I never got the opportunity to visit. Now that there was a foodie meet, I wasn’t going to miss it and on a lazy Saturday afternoon, here I was to hog along with some foodie friends. Ambiance of the place is nothing great, more or less similar to Santosh Dhaba, Abids.

They had a fixed meal for the meet which had a couple of drinks, starters, main course, a rice item and Dal Batti Churma. Their famous Train Papad was served a few minutes into the meal.

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Train Papad

I’m not a fan of papad, but thought this was quite innovative – 4 papads with different toppings/chutneys served together. I liked the Imily chutney one the best.

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Achari Paneer Tikka

Next came in the Achari Paneer Tikka. While the paneer was fresh, it wasn’t well marinated and so it felt like I was eating raw paneer. When we informed this to the waiter, we got another serving which tasted better but still wasn’t perfect.

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Gobi 65

Gobi 65 was served next. While this was pretty good, the gobi was overcooked which kinda made the pieces soggy.

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The last starter was Veg. Manchuria which turned out to be excellent. They were crunchy and had perfect taste. These definitely were the best manchuria I’ve had in recent times.

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Buttermilk, Masala Thumps Up and Lassi

While hogging on the starters, we asked for Buttermilk, Lassi and Masala Thumps Up. The Buttermilk was thick and creamy, while the Lassi was too sweet for my liking. The Masala Thumps Up was alright

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Shubham Special Marwadi Curry

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Deewan-E-Khaas

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Assorted Breads

While I was full with the food so far, the main course was served – Shubham Special Marwadi Curry and Deewan-E-Khaas, along with some Aloo Paratha and Butter Naan. The Marwadi Curry turned out to be super creamy with full of nuts, and tasted delicious. The Deewan-E-Khas was equally good and tasty. The breads were alright.

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Shubham Special Fried Rice

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Dal Tadka

Next, Special Fried Rice was served with Dal Tadka (I know it’s weird combination). The fired rice was again excellent with the quality of rice being perfect. The Dal too was pretty decent.

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Bati

Shubham Veg Dhaba Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Dal and Churma

The last item of the meal was Dal Bati Churma. I was totally stuffed by the time this was served so just had a spoonful to taste. It turned out to be oozing with ghee and tasted delicious.

Overall, a pretty good meal. While the first couple of starters weren’t great, the rest of the meal turned out to be palatable. My only concern is with the consistency of the dishes for the taste kept varying with every serving. And also, the food is full of ghee and butter, so it’s definitely not for figure/diet conscious people. That apart, the service was alright and the prices were pretty reasonable. If your bored of the same food at Santosh Dhaba, Shubham is a must try place for you.

Food: 9/10
Service: 8/10
Ambiance: 7.5/10
Meal for 1: Rs. 300/- (Foodie Deal)

Verdict: 9/10

Eat India Company

Place: Eat India Company
Location: Road No. 36, Jubilee Hills
Cuisine: Indian
Meal: Lunch (with a friend)

On a Sunday afternoon, decided to meet a friend at Urban Asia. Only when we walked in did we realize that they have a brunch on Sundays and don’t serve a-la-carte. Most of the stuff on the brunch spread was meat and so we didn’t see a point of spending 800 bucks on it. Next stop, Eat India Company on the floor below. This place has very Indianised ambiance, and we made ourselves comfortable at a table for two in a corner.

They had two different menus for starters and main course which I thought was pretty neat. We ordered Bharwan Dhingri for starters, and Patiala Shahi Paneer with some bread for the main course.

Eat India Company Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Bharwan Dhingri

It took about ten minutes for the starters to be served, and I thought the presentation and quantity were pretty good. The description on the menu read beetroot and cottage cheese stuffed mushrooms, but I didn’t find any beetroot. However, they were very well done mushrooms with perfect stuffing and coating. Yum!

Eat India Company Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Patiala Shahi Paneer

The main course was served pretty soon, and again I was very impressed with the quantity of curry served. On taste front, the panner was super fresh and melt in my mouth, and the gravy happened to be the best I’ve had in recent times. Creamy and silky, it was finger licking good (I actually ended up cleaning the bowl with my fingers). Super yum!

Eat India Company Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Atte ki Laccha Paratha

For breads we ordered Atte ki Roti and Atte ki Laccha Paratha. While the roti was a little dry for my liking, the paratha was excellent. It had perfect layers and was very well-baked.

Eat India Company Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Kesar Badam Kulfi

Eat India Company Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Pista Kulfi

To finish off the yummy meal, we ordered a couple of Kulfi – Kesar Badam and Pista, both of which turned out to be delicious.

Overall, a super satisfying meal. It’s been a long time since I had such perfect meal. To add to the good food, the service was perfect and so was the ambiance. While the prices are a little on the higher side, I think they are still reasonable for the quantity served. I hope they maintain the same quality (and quantity) unlike their sister restaurant Via Milano. I’d put this on my best restaurants list for sure. Go hog!

Food: 9.5/10
Service: 9/10
Ambiance: 8.5/10
Meal for 2: Rs. 1312/-

Verdict: 9/10

Olive Bistro

Place: Olive Bistro
Location: Near Ambedkar University, Jubilee Hills
Cuisine: Italian
Meal: Lunch (with few foodie friends)

About a month ago, was called upon by a few foodie friends for a tasting session at Olive Bistro. Though I visited the restaurant pretty recently, decided to give it a try for it would give me an opportunity to try more dishes. On a bright afternoon, here I was with six other foodies inide the closed dining section. Ambiance wise, the place looked very bright (for the shades were pulled up), and it actually looked better than during the night-time.

We started off with drinks, and I asked for Peach & Apricot Milkshake. A while later I also ordered for a Litchi Iced Tea.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Peach & Apricot Milkshake

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Litchi Iced Tea

The milkshake was creamy and the flavour was perfect. While it was a little too sweet for my liking, it was still a great shake. The Litchi Iced Tea was absolutely perfect and one of the best iced tea I’ve ever had.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Mushroom Soup

Next I asked for the Mushroom Soup. This again was very thick and creamy, and tasted excellent. I loved the strong mushroom flavour.

While other foodie friends ordered a lot of meat starters, I asked for Veg. Pizza Pockets (Panzarotti) and Saffron Arancini.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Veg. Pizza Pockets

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Saffron Arancini

It is well-known that the service at Olive Bistro is slow, but the fact that it took close to an hour for these to be served was quite disappointing. Furthering adding to my misery (and hunger), neither of them tasted any good; the Pizza Pockets had barely any filling in them with no sight of cheese, while the Arancini stuffing seemed uncooked. I was really hungry and craving for food and that was the only reason I gulped them without any qualms.

Everyone at the table wanted to try The All Veg on a Thin Crust pizza, so.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

The All Veg Pizza on a Thin Crust

The pizza was served in reasonable time (surprisingly) and was bigger than what was served the last time I was here. While the crust was neat, I was not really satisfied with the pizza for it tasted pretty bland and there was barely any cheese.

For the main course, I ordered Roast Almond & Creamed Spinach Ravioli.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Roasted Almost & Creamed Spinach Ravioli

For some reason I was expecting this to be served in a creamy sauce, but it was in fact served in a dry tomato sauce. While it tasted alright, the ravioli stuffing was also pretty dry and I could neither taste the almonds nor the creamed spinach. Not the best ravioli.

To finish the meal, on recommendation, I ordered for OB Signature Profiteroles.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

OB Signature Profiteroles

While Profiteroles were not something I would have ordered in general (for I would have preferred something more creamy), these tasted pretty good and crunchy.

Overall, while few items tasted good, it wasn’t a great meal altogether. I was more or less disappointed with the starters and the main course items, so it actually a disappointing meal. To add to that, the service was pathetic. If I were paying for the meal (not a tasting session), I would have probably stormed out of the place for such lethargic service. The restaurant might have a huge fan following and tons of regular customers, but it can definitely count me out of that list for I don’t think I’d be coming back to this place in the near future again even if it is a tasting session.

Food: 7/10
Service: 5.5/10
Ambiance: 8.5/10
Meal for 1: N/A

Verdict: 7/10

Roll On

Place: Roll On
Location: Adj. Mom and Me, KPHB Colony
Cuisine: Indian
Meal: Dinner

I’ve been wanting to try this place since I’ve read about it on Zomato. I dropped down one night after a movie at Cinepolis, but it was already too late and they were done with all the veggie stuff. So here I was on another occasion, on my way to catch another movie. Roll On is a no fancy joint, a small kiosk on the corner of the road with a couple of stools laid in front of the kiosk.

I asked for a Mushroom Olive Cheese Roll, and it took about 5-10 minutes before I was handed the roll.

Roll On Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Mushroom Olive Cheese Roll

Unlike most other places which serve a maida based roll, this place served a wheat chapathi (which was good). The roll was oily, but on taste front it was very good. They used green Olives instead of black and the stuffing was perfect. For 80 bucks, this seemed more like an appetizer though.

Here I was again a few days later after watching another movie at PVR to try something more fulfilling; I ordered for an Egg-less Mushroom Cheese Shahi Paratha.

Roll On Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Mushroom Cheese Shahi Paratha

This time it took a bit longer, about 15 minutes for the paratha to be served. On first sight, the quantity seemed better. Taste wise, though pretty spicy, the paratha was excellent; there was tons of cheese with yummy mushroom masala. I was expecting for it to have some mayonnaise as well, but because I asked for a egg-less paratha, they skipped it. Nevertheless, it turned out to be yum and filled my tummy.

Overall, a decent joint which serves some good rolls and parathas. The rolls are a little overpriced, especially since they don’t really fill your tummy, but the Shahi Paratha was total value for money. Definitely worth a try if you’re in this part of the town, but only if you are willing to ignore the calories.

Food: 8.5/10
Service: 8/10
Ambiance: N/A
Meal for 1: Rs. 80/- for the Roll; Rs. 90 for the Paratha

Verdict: 8/10

AB’s

Place: AB’s – Absolute Barbecues
Location: Opp. Madhapur Police Station, Road No. 36, Jubilee Hills
Cuisine: Global
Meal: Lunch

Here’s another restaurant with raving reviews I’ve been wanting to visit for a while. I’ve been told that this place is always busy, especially over the weekends, so I called in on Friday to reserve a table for lunch either for Saturday or Sunday. I was turned down for they were already full. I again called in on Saturday morning and was told the same, but they suggested to try walking in. Taking my chances, I reached AB’s a little after they opened for the day, and was seated in a jiffy at a table for two in between the buffet and the wish grill without any hassle. Surprisingly, the place was full by then itself. The interiors of the restaurant were good, and I was pretty impressed with the overall ambiance of the place.

The initial few minutes were lull, and it took a while for someone to attend to me. After about ten minutes, the griller was placed on my table, and everything was in place for a long meal.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Crispy Corn

First came Crispy Corn. Though they tasted good, I would have preferred them to be hot and more crispy.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Stuffed Mushroom, Cuban Cottage Cheese, and Cuban Grilled Veggies

Then came the grills: Stuffed Mushroom in Tamarillo Sauce, Mama’s Caribbean Cottage Cheese and Cuban Grilled Vegetables. The grilled veggies mostly had peppers with corn on the cob, which tasted decent. The paneer was really soft and tasted yum along with the condiments, especially the mango and chilli sauces.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Yummy Condiments

But the best of the lot happened to be Stuffed Mushrooms. They were perfectly grilled and had the right amount of seasoning to make them delicious. I’ve said this often, but these were some of the best I’ve had in recent while. Yum!!

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Blue Curacao

While I hogged on 3-4 skewers of paneer and mushrooms, I was offered a choice of complimentary drink as part of their first anniversary. I chose Blue Curacao Mocktail which turned out to be pretty good.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Falafel in Pita Bread

Then came Falafel with Humus in Pita Pocket. This was a disappointment as the Falafel turned out to be hard, and the pita too wasn’t great. I informed the floor chef about the same, and he got me a hotter one, which turned out to be better, but still not the best.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

American Cheesy Potatoes

Next, the final starter of the day’s menu was served: American Cheesy Potato. These turned out to be more or less the same as what I had at Aao Khao a couple of weeks ago; aloo tikkis with spicy cheesy sauce. While the sauce was good, the tikkis weren’t really up to the mark for they were pretty hard and undercooked.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Grilled Pineapple

Apart from the five listed starters, there also happened to be Grilled Pineapple which turned out to be toothsome!

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Honey Chilly Fries

Post my feedback about the Falafel and Potatoes, the floor chef offered to serve me some off the menu starters. First came in Honey Chilly Potato Fries which turned out to be pretty good. However, I would have preferred them to be more crispy and spicy.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Crispy Cheese Rolls

Finally, he served me some Crispy Cheese Rolls which turned out to be really good. The paper-thin crust almost melt in my mouth with every bite; yummy!

I hadn’t even started on the main course, but was almost stuffed. After a small break, I headed out to the wish-grill.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Wish-grill Veggies

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Wish-grill Sauces

At first, I had no clue on what exactly I was supposed to do, but soon understood that I had to choose from the choice of vegetables, rice or noodles, and pick a sauce for them to be tossed/grilled with. I choose some veggies with noodles and Szechuan Basil sauce (which in itself was delectable). I was given a paper coupon, and a few moments later, the dish was served on my table.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Wish-grill

This looked really good, and tasted equally yum. The chef had added some more veggies apart from my choice, but I didn’t really care for it turned out to be a delicious dish! If I weren’t stuffed, I would have liked to try another combination with a different sauce.

After two hours of munching, it was time to head to the buffet. Ironically, I just had a taste everything for my tummy wouldn’t take any more food for the day.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Salad Counter

Though the salad counter looked good, I decided to skip it.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Taco Twist Soup

The Taco Twist Soup looked and sounded good, so decided to give it a shot. It actually tasted very different from regular soups, in a good way.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Buffet Offerings

They had Lahori Paneer, Vegetable Jalfrezi, Corn ka Bharta, Kala Dum Aloo, Rasgulle ki Sabzi and Dal Makhni as part of their Indian offerings. The Paneer tasted very good while the rest were decent. Worth mention is the Rasgulle ki Sabzi which had yummy Rasgullas in a creamy sauce; not what you expect, but it actually turned out to be a pretty good experiment. The Dal also turned out to be delicious. They also had Biryani which was, like in any buffet, mediocre. They had Thai Green Curry which was too thin and lacked flavour. The Butter Naan served along was soft and good.

I couldn’t eat any more, I was done. But wait, I still had to taste the desserts. Why god, why!? 😛

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Desserts

They again had a huge offering and I decided to have a taste of everything; all of them turned out to be succulent.

 AB's - Absolute Barbecues Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Black-forest Ice-cream

And I ended my laborious meal with a Black Forest ice-cream which was made with loads of nuts; yummilicious!

After three hours, I was done eating. No wonder it’s so difficult to find a table at this place for everyone would just settle down for hours. I ate to my heart’s content after a long time, and how much did it cost? 560 bucks? That’s it, seriously? This is probably the best value for money meal I’ve come across in a long time in Hyderabad. Add to that some personalized service, and you’re in for some pampering. Yes, not all items were great but who cares when most of their huge offering are excellent. It’s a meal worth every penny. Give it a shot if you haven’t yet, and make sure you walk in with a good appetite.

Food: 9/10
Service: 9.5/10
Ambiance: 8.5/10
Meal for 1: Rs. 559/-

Verdict: 9.5/10

PS: While lunch is priced 559 bucks AI on all days, dinner is slightly more expensive. And ya, they don’t accept tips. 🙂

Aao Khao

Place: Aao Khao
Location: Kondapur Road, Gachibowli
Cuisine: Indian
Meal: Lunch

For a foodie meet, dropped in to this small place on Kondapur-GachiBowli road. It’s a small air conditioned, self-service, no seating joint, with pretty neat ambiance. With the kinda food offering, it reminded me of 13 Dhaba, but with much better atmosphere.

As part of the foodie deal, we were in for a long treat: Cajun Spice Potato, Rajma Chawal, Chole Chawal, Kadi Chawal, Chole Bhature, Amritsari Kulcha, Daal Makhani, Matar Paneer, Roti or Naan, Lassi, Butter Milk, Gulab Jamun, Desi Ghee Jalebi, all for 200 bucks. No, I didn’t eat them all, just tasted a few 😛

Aao Khao Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Cajun Spice Potatoes

The Cajun Spice Potatoes happened to be Aloo Tikkis served with spicy creamy cheese sauce, and chopped onions. The combination was just perfect, and tasted brilliant. It was one of the best starters I’ve tasted in recent while. I couldn’t stop licking the sauce off my fingers. Yum!

Aao Khao Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Amritsari Kulcha and Chole

Aao Khao Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Amritsari Kulcha with Dal Makhni and Mutter Paneer

I asked for an Amritsari Kulcha with Mutter Paneer and Dal Makhni. The Kulcha wasn’t really great for there was not much stuffing, and tasted bland. The Mutter Paneer too was kinda sad; the paneer was alright, but the gravy was too tomatoey and lacked enough masala. I had a taste of Chole, which also wasn’t really great. However, the Dal Makhni happened to be delicious for it was creamy and just perfect. A saviour in terms of main course dishes.

Aao Khao Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Rajma Chawal

Aao Khao Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Kadi Chawal

I next asked for a portion of Dal Chawal, which as expected tasted yum. That apart, I had some Rajma Chamwal, which was pretty good. The Kadi Chawal could have been better.

Aao Khao Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Lassi and Butter Milk

Surprisingly, the Lassi was very thin and tasted average, while the Butter Milk was creamy and thick.

Both the desserts, the Gulab Jamoon and Jelebi were pretty good.

Overall, it was a decent meal. While few items were excellent, others needed a lot of improvement. Bottom line, give this place a try if you’re in this part of the city. I thought it was definitely better than the dhaba along the road; lemme know what you think.

Food: 8/10
Service: N/A
Ambiance: 8/10
Meal for 1: Rs. 200/- (as part of the foodie deal)

Verdict: 8/10

Olive Bistro

Place: Olive Bistro
Location: Near Ambedkar University, Jubilee Hills
Cuisine: Italian
Meal: Dinner (with a friend)

Olive Bistro has been on my to-go list for a long time now, but there’s never been an occasion to do so. Come Hyderabad Gourmet Week, I finally got the opportunity to visit this place along with a friend. Their special menu looked good and was priced reasonably, so here we were. Our automated reservation was for 7:00 PM on a Sunday evening, but I called and changed it to 9:00 PM. We landed a little early, and were led to a table with my name card, in the closed section of the restaurant without any fuss. The interiors of this section were pretty neat, and the ambiance outside seemed nice (I didn’t explore much).

As part of the Gourmet meal, we were to choose for a starter, main course and a dessert from a fixed list. My friend asked for Farm House Minestrone Soup, Spinach, Olive, Sun-dried Tomato, Corn & Feta Pizza, and Olive’s Signature Bread & Butter Pudding, and I ordered for Cottage Cheese Skewer, Mushroom Fricassee, and Coconut & White Chocolate Panacotta.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Farm House Minestrone

The Minestrone Soup was served in about 10 minutes and tasted pretty good. It was thick, tomatoey and had strong Basil flavour.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Cottage Cheese Skewers

I know that ordering Cottage Cheese Skewers at an Italian restaurant is a crime, but there was no better alternative on the list. Four chunks of marinated cottage cheese were served along with garlic sauce, and while the sauce was yummy, the paneer didn’t really taste great. If it weren’t for the sauce, I don’t think I’d even consider eating them.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Mushroom Fricassee

The Mushroom Fricassee was served a while later, and it looked pretty good. On taste front, it was an absolute delight and exactly the way I wanted it to be – creamy, with tons of mushroom, again with a touch of basil. The sauce though could have been little more thicker.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Spinach, Olive.. Pizza

The pizza, which was served after ages, tasted pretty good. However, I thought the crust was too thin, and I would also have preferred more Feta.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Bread & Butter Pudding

It took another forever for the desserts to be served, and both of them looked mouth-watering good. The pudding, though a little too sweet for my liking, tasted really good along with the peaches and cream.

Olive Bistro Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Coconut and White Chocolate Panacotta

The panacotta tasted absolutely delicious. The coconut flavour was very subtle, and the Mango Jelly served along was perfect.

Overall, it was a pretty good meal. Apart from my starter, everything else tasted decent. However, but for the desserts, nothing was exceptional. And while the ambiance is decent, the service was terribly slow, and I had to keep calling for the stewards over and over even to get some water. For the price you’re paying, you kinda expect everything to be perfect, and that’s where I was disappointed. Nevertheless, if you are willing to excuse such service lapses and have the money to spend, then Olive Bistro could be on your Italian fine dine list.

Food: 8/10
Service: 6/10
Ambiance: 8.5/10
Meal for 2: Rs. 1600/- (Gourmet week promotional meal)

Verdict: 8/10

Express Meals

Place: Express Meals
Location: Nagarjuna Cirlce, Banjara Hills
Cuisine: Chinese
Meal: Take away

Few days ago, amma pointed out this new place near at Nagarjuna Circle, and a couple of days later, a friend of mine posted a good review on it. Wanting to check it out, decided to drive down the road and pick up some quick food. Express Meals is a small take-away joint with barely any ambiance. It’s an ideal joint for late night dwellers for its open and delivers food till 3:00 in the morning.

Though it seemed more like an Indian joint, I was in mood for some Chinese, and so ordered Hakka Noodles and Gobi-65. The latter was unavailable, so opted for Veg. Manchuria. It took about 30 minutes for the food to get ready (which was way too long especially when the name of the place is Express Meals), but a conversation with the owner kept me busy during the wait.

Express Meals Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Veg. Hakka Noodles

Hakka Noodles, neatly packed in a plastic container, looked and smelt really good. They tasted pretty good as well, but there was a layer of oil towards the bottom of the box, which was a put off.

Express Meals Restaurant Review by Sasikanth Paturi

Veg. Manchuria

The Manchuria was served in a silver foil box and got a little squished by the time I reached home. I wonder why it wasn’t served in a plastic container. Anyway, it happened to be among the best Manchuria I’ve tasted in recent time. It was perfectly cooked, had the right amount of sauce and spices, and overall, tasted yum.

While the food tasted pretty good, I was unhappy with the quantity for the price paid. The Noodles was barely enough for me and amma. You expect more than that from a take away joint, especially when you pay whopping 275 bucks. Yes, they did pack the food decently and supplied the required cutlery, but that still doesn’t make up for the money. Same stuff at Chopsticks on the parallel road would cost me Rs. 140/- (with better quantity).

I’d give this place another try for their Indian offering while hoping for better value for money. Let’s hope that ain’t my last visit.

Food: 8.5/10
Service: 7/10
Ambiance: N/A
Meal for 2: Rs. 275/-

Verdict: 7/10