When I asked for the Kala Khatta Margarita, I saw SM’s right eyebrow rise up a notch. She wanted a taste, although she is quite non-alcoholic these days. I obliged the moment the drink hit the table. Ice-cold, this is one of those drinks which you want to have slowly, licking the salt rim, and memories of childhood and sucking on ice lollies floating in and out of your head. SM gave the drink a thumbs up, and I drank it slowly, savouring the cold ice against my parched throat.
At Gabbar’s what I love is the fun combination of good food with a bit of molecular gastronomy from time to time to keep things interesting. Once inside the place, quotes from villains and funny dialogues would stand out from time to time. Identifying your way through Sholay to Andaaz Apna Apna, the place is an ode to the vibrancy of Bollywood, and we were seated at the private room, which was the ‘kingpin’s den’.
And of course, the food is quite fun too. The Keema Pao is one such example, where the bread is in the centre, covered with mincemeat flavoured with a touch of garam masala and coriander, then batter-fried, and served with a fried chilli on top. Its served with an assortment of chutneys, although I don’t taste a lot of the mince in the food. The Balam Pichkari is a nice take on the Bengali favourite, phuchka, where spheres of mint-water is artfully placed on the semolina-based phuchka shell, with a generous portion of potato filling inside. Served with an assortment of waters, some sweet, some tangy, its a rather fun experiment to conduct.
The mini-kulchas were served with chholey on top of a cute mini-truck, and it was definitely one of the things I was looking forward to, and although the chholey was much drier than I liked, the soft kulchas sort of made up for it. I wasn’t too fond of the roomali roti pizza, the crust too thin to hold up to the cheese covering it.
Lime Margarita with Strawberry Iced Lolly
I asked for my second drink of the day, and yes, it was another margarita, one which I was craving for, ever since I had had it. The Lime Margarita was tart and the salty rim added to it. The strawberry iced lolly in the center was sweet and creamy – the perfect foil for the strong, tangy drink – I was going to order another one of those, but I got distracted by the Tandoori Momos.
One of my closest friends swear by Tandoori Momos, although I personally am not very convinced. These came sizzling to our table, with plenty of grilled tomatoes and onions, and I have to say, the spicy coating didn’t overwhelm the filling inside, and the mint chutney served with it was cold and creamy, cooling down the fiery sizzle and hiss effectively.
The Litchi and Kaffir Lime Mocktail was refreshing, the lime taking the front seat, while the litchi soft and subtly sweetening in the background. There was also a Watermelon and Basil Mojito, but I have never been too fond of watermelons, and after a slurp and two, safely transferred the drink to M, who was all too happy to finish it.
The Potli Kabab was a bag full of promises, the chicken encased into flour, covered with a fiery marinade, grilled and served. I was disappointed though – the outer casing was way too thick for me to truly like this dish, but the chicken inside was succulent.
Our desserts were rather fun. The Mango Cigars were crisp phyllo pastry containing a generous portion of mango cream which was light as air, with a squiggle of mango sauce on top. Served with ‘cigarettes’ of white chocolate, I was absolutely enraptured by this dessert, so much so, that I almost forgot to taste the house favourite.
The Hazaaron Khwahishen Aisi has been my favourite ever since I first encountered it. What looks like a rather cute flowerpot, complete with a plant is actually filled with chocolate mud pie, vanilla ice cream, Oreo soil, and a generous dose of chocolate sauce. Deftly pick out the mint sprig on top and use your dessert spoon to delve deep, and you would end up with a bit of everything – the warm mud pie, cold ice cream, and cookie crumble. The new menu additions to Gabbar’s look really promising, and deserves a comeback, a meal for two would cost around 1500-2000/-, and the place is open from 12.30 pm to 4 pm, and then 5 pm to 11.30 pm.
Disclaimer: Poorna Banerjee was invited to Gabbar’s by the management for tasting the new menu.