28 August 2016

Why Ek Bar's Sunday Brunch Exemplifies Sheer Brilliance!

Ek Bar has raised the bar really high for Sunday Brunches by other places. The restaurant that works around Indian-inspired food and cocktails has little left to be improved upon; everything is par excellence. With a table brunch that offers unlimited repeats of the dishes and food, and quality that's unparalleled, I think it's high time the focus moves from quantity in a buffet to quality in a buffet for all restaurants. Ek Bar is doing a great job in setting that example through their Sunday Brunch. Chef Sujan Sarkar has created magic with the menu and has really defined table brunches for us. Nitin Tewari, the man behind the cocktails, has given me a reason to compare every cocktail I try with the ones at Ek Bar.

Chef Sujan was there to assist guests with the Sunday Brunch options and guide through the menu. I started my brunch with a Non Vegetarian Thali which had 4-5 things in it- mutton galauti, confit duck puff, dohra kebab and olive chicken tikka. The duck puff and mutton galauti blew my mind away with the perfect symphony of flavours and the gorgeous textures.The dohra kebab wasn't as great and was a little hard, and the olive chicken tikka was a lovely fusion take on the usual chicken tikka. Came with a soft onion kulcha on the isde, Ek Bar ketchup and mint based chutney. The Chicken Sausage was different from the usual and a good different at that, but the Scotch egg didn't have a fresh yolk centre. The crust and taste was really good but.

The Ek Bar Caesar Salad is bliss for an Indian lover. You get juicy marinated pieces of chicken tikka in place of the usual chicken breast you get in a Caesar Salad. Lovely dressing and super fresh lettuce. Loved the Indian touch in this! If you even remotely like Chilli Paneer, you must try the Kataifi Wrap Chilli Paneer. The chilli paneer is wrapped around kataifi (which is like vermicilli). Crisp on the outside with a lovely chilli paneer inside, pickled onions on top and a chilli peanut ketchup on the side, it's really hard for one to not fall in love with this. Burst of flavours and a very different dish.

The menu does justice to all varieties, whether it is in veg or non veg. The Squid and Prawn Dynamite, which was a dish that had the prawn and squid in a tempura, a very fine thin coating. The binding factor of this dish was the beautiful Naga Chilli mayo that doesn't overwhelm you, but totally makes you fall in love with it. Not too strong on the chilli, this dish comes with shredded lettuce on top for the crispness and to balance some of that chilli. Having this for brunch, you just think to yourself- how great is this! And what's more, I can order unlimited portions of this!!

For me a brunch is incomplete without pizzas, and thankfully Ek Bar takes care of that too. Indian-inspired, remember? Their pizza is made on a khameeri roti, which is a thick roti made of yeast, and soft to eat. Had Chicken pepper fry, roasted bell peppers, lemon sour cream khameeri pizza. The pepper chicken added a delicious Indian flavour to the pizza, the bell peppers were crunchy and sweet, and the lemon sour cream cut down on the heaviness of the chicken. The pizza was simply mind-blowing! Small in size so you don't waste food as well. Order the other types after you finish one- a great way to ensure people try variety and don't demolish only a very large sized pizza with the same toppings.

Ek Bar also does the usual stuff brilliantly, like the BBQ Pork Belly with crispy garlic and pickled red radish, which is one of the finest I've had. And they also do the uncanny stuff like a Stuffed Chicken Breast with spinach and served in a tomato cream gravy. No freaking words to say how much this dish can uplift your mood. Served with crisp breads (I chose butter naan), the stuffing of the chicken is out-of-this-world delicious! Now you add another dish to the uncanny list and you see the perfect combination in front of you- Tawa Fried Red Snapper with Popcorn Khichdi. A dish for the fine subtle milder flavours that are not at all heavy on the palette. So much finesse in this one, with red snapper that has a crisp exterior and is so soft and juicy inside, and that tinge of gunpowder!

I ended the main courses and paved way for desserts by having Chicken 65 Sliders. How do you go ALL praises in a menu? By visiting Ek Bar. The stuffing of the burger wasn't a fried patty, but with the meat mixed with coriander, caramelised onion, tomatoes and other things that give the burger an extra edge. The soft bun and the yummy dressings inside made it a dish you cannot afford to miss!! Served with crisp golden potato wedges and Ek Bar ketchup on the side.

Desserts saw a very unique affaire, eveyrthing with an Indian touch to it and absolutely rocking the concept! Baked Saffron Yoghurt(Eggless) which is so light but bang on with the poached apricots and poppy seed meringue on the side. A balance of sweetness of the meringue cut down by the yoghurt. Mangalorean Banana Cake was a dessert that came with a slice of banana cake, caramelised bananas and til chikki ice-cream. The ice-cream was the highlight of the dessert for me! One of those ice-creams that aren't overly sweet but the flavour in it blows your mind away? It was just that! A very different dessert, once again. Kubhani Cheesecake wasn't a part of the Sunday Brunch menu but I got to try that as well. A cheesecake with a great consistency and texture, with date and apricot jam that lent the punch to the dessert. Loved it! The showstopper of the desserts was Haji Ali Filo Tart, which is a dessert inspired from the fresh mango desserts and shakes you get outside Haji Ali in Mumbai, Mango souffle with fresh alphonso mangoes with a thin crisp filo tart, which when broken into, gives you that utmost feeling of satifaction. Covered with silver warq, I simply do not have words to describe this dessert. It's seasonal, so I think you will only get it for another 15 days or so. It's heaven on a plate. Do not miss it at any cost.

Coming to the part that a Sunday Brunch is incomplete without- the cocktails. The bartender who made most of my drinks was Shubham, and what a incredible job he did! I'll now get down to business and tell you how the cocktails were. A vodka based drink, Murabba Mule comes in a copper mug. The drink is not dominantly sweet and that's because of the ginger flavour from the homemade ginger beer. City of Nizams, one of Ek bar's most popular cocktails, was a gin based drink with turmeric and tonic water. It has some orange juice too, and a hemisphere cube of ice which has mace in it (the spice mace that comes from a nutmeg). How this tastes cannot be describe, you need to try the drink to know why it's a crowd favourite. Absolutely unbelievable how an Indian-inspired drink can taste so great! Phool Bagaan Fizz is a gin based drink which has the gin infused with mogra flower. Yes, you read that right. Having this drink feels like you're drinking mogra flower (in a good way). And if this wasn't enough to surprise you, this drink also has sparkling water and egg white. Imagine this, and then imagine the drink tasting superb! Plum Up is a vodka based drink with plums, lime and egg white. It has that sour tinge and a lovely sweet flavour from the plums, and the lemon encompasses the flavour so well. Tried the Queen Victoria, a vodka based drink with ginger, lemon and slight taste of honey. It's one of those drinks that will be loved by everyone. Ek Bar has the most astounding cocktails in Delhi. Period. These are available in the ala carte as well, at 500++ per cocktail, and it's worth every single penny. 

Go and have their Sunday Brunch the first chance you get- it's an experience you will cherish and keep going back for. The service is very prompt, the bartenders are so so talented in their field. Chef Sujan, Chef Pujan and the rest of the team really knows their shit (could not have described it any other way). They literally do create magic for you. And let's not even get into how cost effective this Sunday Brunch is. I won't say I'm all praises for this place, because that doesn't do justice to how brilliant the fare is. Just go and experience it for yourself to understand what I'm saying. Can't wait to go back already!!

Ek Bar will also be open for lunch all days of the week from September! So you can then head here for an ala carte meal both for dinner and lunch.

Price: Rs.1750++
Brunch Timings: 12 Noon to 4PM
Address: D-17, First Floor, Defence Colony, New Delhi-110024 (Next to the Defence Colony petrol pump)
Contact: 011-4168811

Disclaimer: The review was done on an invitation from the restaurant. All views expressed are unbiased in nature but readers are advised to exercise their own discretion.

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