Longitudinally speaking, Dubai is situated on 25 degrees north and that is why this restaurant adopts it as its name. However, to locate the swanky restaurant in Business Bay will take you a good GPS.
My friend and I submitted to the gastronomic assault that started with some refreshing Jal Zeera (popular Indian summer drink made with cumin, mint and black salts with a descriptor from Wikipedia) and Dahi Bhalla (lentil dumplings in cold yoghurt and sweet tamarind chutney). Then came some Watermelon Chat with apple and paneer crumble. Also enticing us was the scrumptious spinach fritters or Palak (Pakodey) Chat. This was definitely the star!
Next up was Dahi Kebab (made with hung curd). They looked more like spring roles, as opposed to the traditional medallions, and were a little too 'bready'. Chef Ravinder then had some smooth mutton seekh kebabs and chicken malai kebabs sent our way. Those were demolished quickly. With it came Amritsari Fish Tikka. I would have preferred the marinade to be a bit spicier and not bordering on bland.
Main course featured Dal Palak (lentils with spinach), Kurkurey Bhindi (crispy okra), Paneer Makhni (cottage cheese in sweet buttery tomato gravy), Nalli Nihari (slow cooked lamb / mutton stew) and Kadai Prawns. Am afraid the Kurkurey Bhindi turned out to be Bhindi Pakodey (each okra was batter coated and not fried-till-crisp) and so, totally disappointing. The Kadai Prawns did not match up to the description in the menu. It was rather sweet as opposed to the missing under-cutting sense of heat. Maybe the sweetness of the red onions were up to foul play. What hit the mark was the Paneer Makhni and to some extent, Nalli Nihari. I discussed the type of mutton being used with the restaurant manager, who graciously promised to look into it. There was some piping hot chicken dumpukht biryani served in a seal-able bottle.
Before desserts, we took a small walk, just to rearrange everything. Full marks for crispy jalebis and rabdi! Heavenly! And the rabdi (condensed milk with pitachios and cardamom) was thick and smooth. This was followed by a cocktail glass filled with ice-cream, chocolate sauce and tiny gulab jamuns swimming in them.
On my #BurpAndBelch meter: 2.5
#5WordFoodReview: Go For Starters And Desserts
Dev J Haldar is the program director of South Asian radio station Suno1024, an academic and a food critic. Read more about his food adventures on https://burpandbelch.wordpress.com
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