Friday, January 25, 2008
Choko la (meaning let's drink chocolate together) is Delhi's very own chocolate boutique at Khan Market.
As she sits down one pleasant evening by the window seat, Skeety is attended by a lady with the most pleasant smile across her face.
Skeety takes eons to decide on her food and drink (as always). The lady patiently keeps an eye on Skeety to see when she is ready to place the order. A while later, she gives up on Skeety, comes to her rescue, asks her preferences, and recommends a Sao Tome (single origin hot chocolate made from cocoa beans of that region). Skeety surrenders, and to accompany the drink, she orders a Chocolate Mousse.
Eight minutes pass by. Enter, Sao Thome alongwith a piece of the chocolate in the unmolten state. Sao Tome is made with dark chocolate and contains 70 percent cocoa content. It is characterised by its firm body and distinct taste. Skeety enjoyed each sip so much, that she ended up eating her drink!
Having finished the drink and the mousse, Skeety speaks to the Manager who believes in making customers relish the 'real' chocolates rather than the regular Cad bar or the Fererro Rocher for that matter. Thus, he encourages all to try their Liqueur Truffles and Tanzania hot chocolate (with 73 percent cocoa content).
Skeety then moves on to meet the man behind the scenes, the chef Nikhil Baveja. After a small chat session, she asks him what would he call the specialty of the house. Ice-creams comes the reply.
According to Nikhil, they are as good as home-made ones and are freshly churned. Skeety shall wait till summers to see (read taste) it for herself.
Till then, let's Choko la!
P.S.:The staff at the Khan Market branch do a better job than the ones at Basant Lok. The Basant Lok branch is their first one and is more sought after. Choko la at Khan Market is a new-kid-on-the-block and is doing quite well. Atleast for now.
Update: Nikhil no longer works at Choko la.
Wednesday, January 02, 2008
The humble potato is Delhi's delight during the winter months. And aloo chaat, is the best form in which the potato can be consumed in this part of the world, at this time of the year.
As the temperature drops to the season's lowest, I sit down and close my eyes. I see a photo slide of the various foods that I'd love to gorge on this winter (as any other). Aloo chaat, shakarkandi, jalebis from Chandni Chowk, mom-made halwa, kaanji (the blood red spicy drink made from bleeding carrots), and what not flash before my eyes.
I happened to visit the Ham House (known to people as Hamilton House), aloo chaat wala twice in the past two weeks and thought of talking (read writing) about him here. As the name suggests, the chaat wala sits (in a corner) outside the Hamilton House, Inner Circle, Connaught Place.
I've been having the alu chaat made by him ever since I've been visiting Connaught Place.
A visit to Connaught Place is rather incomplete without a nibble at this spicy snack, priced slightly high at Rs.20 for a plate.
Vijay is the man who carries forward the legacy of his father and elder brother of selling the famed chaat. And it has been 35 years since Delhiites have had the pleasure of gorging on it.
Vijay also does a fruit chaat for you, if you want. During winters he also does the sweet potato or shakarkandi to please your tatse buds. But nothing beats the humble potato: diced, fried, spiced up (mild spicy to fiery hot) and served hot. Ahaaa! Yummm!
And yeah he faced the axe from the Supreme Court when the street food vendors and stalls were asked to be removed. Later, everything fell in place (only for old players like these) and now he sells chaat to you legally. :)