What does a foodie do on hearing that ‘apna’ Virat ?, nee Captain Kohli, has ventured into the food business, woh bhi in apna ‘Gaon’?? Rush to have a dekko at the said joint and experience the flavours of course!
So we landed at the newly opened Dhansoo Café outlet at Ambience Mall with our cricket crazy boys in tow for a lunch date. The café is a place well lit and vibrant with indoor plants adding to the positive vibe and the fresh energy of the place. We got settled in and got busy scanning the menu as our boys were happily gazing away at the massive screen playing a –no surprises there- a cricket match. The menu offers a wide and interesting variety with a buff as well as pork dishes along with poultry, seafood and vegetarian options. Without wasting any time we ordered appetizers and drinks which were all non-alcoholic as we had the kids in tow, responsible mommies you see!…pssst… truth be told, they were still awaiting their bar license ;).
The drinks arrived and along with the first set of appetizers. The Berry Blush had a nice kick of mixed berries and was very refreshing, Beat the Heat was a perfect answer to a tiring afternoon with lots of fresh pineapple flavour but Humble Touch was the star of the afternoon with the cooling kiwi, cucumber, and mint flavours beautifully balanced by the heat of jalapenos.
In the appetizers, we had called for the Pulled Chicken Burrito which was good with a wholesome filling of soft and juicy chicken and was accompanied by fresh and light sour cream and salsa which was a bit of a let-down as it was too mild and on the sweeter side.
Tandoori Jhinga was a delight with fat and juicy prawns cooked to perfection served with a decent green chutney and onion rings.
We also called for the Dhansoo Corn Seekh at the chef’s recommendation and it did not disappoint. The melt-in-the-mouth, subtly flavored seekhs served with Varqi paranthas are a definite crowd-pleaser.
The Mutton Pepper Fry was a lot in quantity for an appetizer and came with Malabar Parantha which nearly made for a full meal. It was cooked superbly but alas, lacked in salt which had us feeling a bit disappointed. We shared our concern with the Chef and he very humbly accepted the feedback and offered to get us another dish but we wanted to move on to our next plate of food.
This was the Mushroom Chimichurri and what an absolutely delightful dish it was. The mushrooms had a tempura-like thin, crispy coating on them and were tossed in a flavourful sauce! The kids totally loved these.
The last dish on the appetizer order for us was the good ol’ Paneer Tikka. Big cubes of soft cottage cheese, marinated in the yummy mix and grilled till a nice char on the paneer was achieved. I personally loved it.
Before we moved on to the main course, we were served with really enticing Palate Cleansers in cute little bottles served on ice. It was refreshing but deceivingly similar to the kiwi-cumber drink we had had earlier. Since we had loved that so much, we didn’t mind this!
Moving on to the main course, we were kind of getting full so decided to order just two dishes – the Nalli Nihari and the Himalayan Monks Bowl (Veg).
Since one of our lunch party members had a gluten intolerance, we requested for the Nalli Nihari to be served with Bajra Roti instead of the said lacchha parantha and we were happily accommodated. The Nalli Nihari was a complete delight that just melted in our mouths and was perfectly flavoured and seasoned. The bajra rotis were soft and smeared in ghee. This combination was just irresistible and it all disappeared in minutes.
The Himalayan Monks Bowl was a super huge serving with an assortment of chickpeas, spinach, corn, tofu, red rice, steamed vegetables and red curry. This was a gluten-free meal and surprisingly the kids really enjoyed it.
Even though we were all kind of full to the brim by now but as they say… there’s a separate stomach for desserts in our body.
We ordered the Mava Jalebi Churros which was a fusion dessert with a huge ‘jalebi’-shaped churro served with a big dollop of saffron-flavoured rabri on top. Needless to say, we all dug in with gusto and it was nowhere to be seen in a matter of a few winks.
The next in line was the Cinnamon Tiramisu. The name kind of says it all. This was a beautiful coffee flavoured, silken cream served with a cinnamon-flavoured soft biscuit in place of the usual ladyfingers. An unusual combination for sure, not for every palate I would say!
Last, but not the least for sure was the Trio Platter. This was an assortment of three ice-cream flavours.
- Boondi Laddoo – This was luckily not overly sweet as we were anticipating, unlike the original sweet, but definitely boondi laddoo flavoured.
- Guava – It was delicious and creamy with a dash of red chilli sprinkled on top, a lovely reminder of the days of yore when we used to climb guava trees and eat the freshly plucked fruits with chilli and salt sprinkled on them.
- Chikmagalur Coffee – This one just transported us to a serene place in South India drinking filter coffee, was just a tad bit powdery in texture though!
This just about wrapped up our lunch with a final addition of bachpan wali ‘Swad’ candy and ‘Imli’ candy served in the end!
Besides the good food and drinks, the service at Dhansoo Café was prompt and the staff strictly followed Covid-safety protocols. A definite next-time on our list to try the other yummies on the menu
Address: Shop No: T-304 A, Third Floor, Ambience Mall, NH-8, Ambience Island, Gurugram
Feature Image: Dhansoo Cafe
This review is by Mukti Agarwal & Ambika Rikhye
Mukti is currently pursuing her passion for content creation, storytelling and writing. She dabbles with cooking experiments and populates her YouTube channels – ‘Pitaaraa Pooja Mukti ka’ and ‘Muktis oho se aha tak’. Mukti is a proud mom to a teenager, a qualified yoga trainer, a reiki practitioner, and in her spare time enjoys reading and photography.
Ambika is a doting mom to a pre-teen. She loves gardening, storytelling, baking sourdough, and writing. She is also a published author of the book Mirage. Though a private person, she enjoys sharing with the community.