India has the most extensive, varied and exciting cuisines in the world. North, South, East, West and every place in between, the ingredients, taste and methods of cooking are different. There was a time, not so long ago, when you had to actually go to the original place to enjoy their unique dishes.
Not so anymore. Now you can enjoy any regional food in your own city. Today we have fine dining restaurants that offer speciality meals in a formal, refined setting where décor, ambience, high-quality victuals and dedicated service are paramount.
Come join us on a culinary journey to discover what we have dished up for you.
Indian Accent, New Delhi (TripAdvisor Rating: 4.5/5)
Indian Accent is situated in the posh, green Lodhi Road area of New Delhi. The restaurant exudes ‘incredible lightness of being’ vibes. There is glass everywhere, including a large portion of the roof, providing an airy, outdoor feeling. That impression is further strengthened by water all around, upon which the restaurant seems to float.
The menu is a wonderfully rich, varied and gastronomically rewarding. The food is a superb blend and synthesis of Indian flavours heightened by classy international wines. Many of the dishes are homely, traditional and sometimes humble but given an inspired twist. However, if you want to get the best of Indian Accent, then choose the Chef Tasting Menu. This has vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. The ingredients are fresh, local, seasonal and organic (when available). The bar also fashions some energising cocktails.
Run by Old World Hospitality and curated by multi-award winner Chef Manish Mehrotra, Indian Accent is more than Indian; it is a truly global dining experience. Indian Accent has been India’s Best Restaurant on TripAdvisor’s Travellers Choice forum for 3 years running. It is also ranked among the World’s Best 50 Restaurants.
Chingari, Pune (TripAdvisor Rating: 5/5)
Chingari is an open-air, roof-top restaurant with a rustic feel to it. It has a lovely latticework screen and roof. When evening comes around and night falls, it turns into fantasy land. The fairy lights and lanterns twinkling among the surrounding trees and shrubbery and reflecting off the pool heighten that experience. The ambience is romantic with subdued lighting within the restaurant and complemented by coloured candle vases on the tables. Nothing loud here!
The furniture comprises of locally crafted, simple wooden tables and chairs. The earthy touch is on display with the tableware and beaten copper water goblets. The open-air kitchen, grill and tandoor, visible to the diners, ensure the aroma of baking rotis and marinated meats waft over to them adding to their gastronomic thrill.
The food dished out at Chingari is North Indian – mainly of the Lucknow, Awadhi and Mughlai variety. The menu is extensive with a wide selection of curries, tikkas and kebabs. The top two favourites and renowned dishes in the non-vegetarian section are the Raan-e-Chingari and the Galouti kebabs. Chingari also puts out some delectable seafood platters, notably Fish Amritsari. The vegetarian menu is also very good with the Dal Makhani and Chingari being the signature items.
The striking feature of Chingari dishes and cooking style is that the spices and masalas do not subdue the flavours of the vegetables. Rather they complement and draw out their essence.
Chingari has been rated 15 among The Best Restaurants in Asia.
Chingari is the epitome of a ‘cool place’ to hang out for bright young things. It is located on the roof of the Sheraton Grand.
Villa Maya, Trivandrum (TripAdvisor Rating: 4.5/5)
The Villa Maya is a wonderfully arresting 18th century Dutch Heritage Villa. Within its elegant precincts is the awesome restaurant! You can either choose to be seated in the mansion or in the open-air courtyard. The outdoor seating comprises of a lovely water garden, private curtained niches replicas of traditional Kerala entrance porticoes. The latter is truly romantic, especially in the evenings and nights.
The food at the Villa Maya matches its ambience in every way. The food presentation is attractive and innovative. The menu is extensive and a diverse and interesting amalgamation of Indian and Continental cuisine.
It should be highlighted that guests should explore Kerala, specifically the Trivandrum side of the menu to get the very best of its kitchen. From the exotic and rich ‘tender coconut soup’ starter to the aromatic, spicy Kerala Special and Fish Tikkas your taste buds will be charmed into deliriousness. The seafood selections are also superb. An alert for potential diners – the starters are tasty, sumptuous and large, which may distract you from the main course. So save some space in your tummy for what is to follow.
TripAdvisor has rated Villa Maya 3rd Best in India and at the 18th spot in Asia. One of the reasons for that high rating is the helpful, friendly and food, knowledgeable staff.
K3, New Delhi (TripAdvisor Rating: 4.5/5)
The K3 is located within the JW Marriot Hotel, New Delhi. The place is a study in polished grace. The walls are interspersed with numerous niches holding attractive Oriental-like jars, urns, lamps and other objet d’art. The furniture and furnishings are eye-catching browns and silvery-beige. The entire ambience is warm, welcoming and stylish modern-chic without being daunting to guests.
K3 does not fit into the usual, staid, traditional fine dining mould. Rather, it is more the buffet-style. The kitchens are live and visible to diners with the one large island kitchen dispensing mouth-watering delights. There are also live kiosks scattered around the seating areas. It is most famous for its buffets – Breakfast, lunch, dinner and Sunday Brunch, which are eye-popping, extravagant spreads.
K3 is a tri-cuisine adventure! The name of the place is an abbreviation for ‘three kitchens’ that refer to the North Indian, Tuscan (central Italian) and Cantonese cuisines. This multi-cuisine, international smörgåsbord will give your taste buds and stomach a treat that you never had before. To complete the ravishingly delicious meal you can then indulge in some of the best melt-in-your-mouth desserts in town. The selection consists of Indian, Italian and German sweet treats.
Do keep in mind that advance reservations are required.
The Black Sheep Bistro, Panaji, Goa (TripAdvisor Rating: 4.5/5)
The owners and operators of The Black Sheep Bistro, describe themselves and their establishment as ‘proudly Goan’. Its handsome lemon yellow façade framed by scalloped arches and pillars leading up to a warm reddish-brown wooden door is a sight to cherish. You enter a real Portuguese era hacienda.
From the entrance lounge to the dining areas the colours, décor and atmosphere are definitely Goan/Mediterranean. This is further enhanced by discreet lighting and cosy spaces, giving the place a warm and intimate feel. You can choose to be seated at high tables and bar stools or sink back into the sumptuous comfort of cushioned sofa-like chairs.
The menu card will impress and may overwhelm you. So seek the guidance of the staff. The food seems both familiar and unexplored. You won’t go wrong with the seafood, though. It is truly Goan! Try out the quesadillas starters and braised pork and poutine. Whatever you have, it will be beautifully presented.
The other wondrous pleasures to be had at The Black Sheep are the creative cocktails and select wines. The Managing Partner, Prahlad Sukhtankar is a sommelier, so expect the best. All courses are paired with wines, a la the Continent.
You will be pampered by discreet, knowledgeable serving staff and enveloped by thematic music while you indulge in fantastic food and fine wine. It is all so chilled and relaxed.
The Black Sheep Bistro was rated No: 6 by TripAdvisor and No: 21 among India’s top 50 restaurants by Condé Nast.
Tamra, New Delhi (TripAdvisor Rating: 4.5/5)
Airy, bright and cheery is the first and lasting impression when you enter the Tamra in Hotel Eros, Central New Delhi. The large glass windows; high ceilings; strategic lighting; the light colours of the ceiling, walls and furnishings and the use of ropes to divide tables and dining areas accentuate the bright and pleasant ambience.
Tamra means copper and has been used in ancient Indian cooking. The collection of shiny, polished copper pots, pans and buckets suspended over the dining tables underscores that fact. The copper motif continues on to the crockery.
Tamra is an all-day, multi-cuisine (five) eatery. They have brought in chefs from India, European, Hong Kong, Thailand and Japan to run and oversee the interactive live kitchens. In essence, you get five restaurants in one place and on your platter. That is really exciting!
The bar is one long oasis of alcoholic pleasures and the buffet line-up is just as intoxicating to the senses.
The food and beverages are off the charts. Taken in conjunction with its warm and comfortable ambience you will be encouraged to return again, and again.