The Royal Afghan, at the ITC Windsor Manor has to be a memorable culinary discovery for me in Bangalore. If there is anything I would highly recommended, it would be this fine dining restaurant known all over, for its highly acclaimed cuisine of India’s North West Frontier. The cuisine as this restaurant has been inspired by traditional camaraderie at the North West Frontier, around the warm glow of a campfire. The lavish cuisine has been highly curated with its succulent tandoori fare, low on oil and high on authenticity. Fast forward to 2016, we have an impeccable and royal meal, that has stood the test of time!
Did you know – it has been about three decades, since 1986, that the menu was conceptualized at this restaurant and nothing has changed since? Food for thought 🙂
The Royal Afghan boasts of its award winning menu cooked in tandoori ovens (traditional clay ovens). It over shadows and gives a whole new meaning to the word BBQ! True to its word, this fine dining restaurant has a lot of history and royalty written all over it, from the rustic dining ambience, its wooden stools and tables. The meals are served in copper utensils. The bonus here is that it sits right next to the pool, the open air is a perfect setting, with the swaying palm trees in the well manicured lawn, this is very colonial and a breath of fresh air.
The large bib you get wrapped around in, just before dining is the best and wonderful surprise! (Green for Vegetarians) and (Red for Non- Vegetarians). Eat without worrying about getting your clothes stained (just brilliant).
It was a time warp to back when the Royals gathered to dine, mixed with the contemporary setting around me, again it was bang on trend at the same time. The menu is very lavish, so bring a large appetite with you. To get all your senses alive and to relish the entire experience of dining at the Royal Afghan, you eat with your hands. Cutlery is provided on request.
I had a glass of Chardonnay to start the afternoon. Then later progressed to a bottle of bubbly, to pair the lovely meal to follow. I have to admit it is fantastic being able to watch the chef in action and the passion that goes into each plating. I was told the seafood is freshly caught and delivered same day from a nearby seafood nursery.
Every Fine Dining restaurant begins with its Amuse Bouche, as they call it. Here, they serve roasted Papad or Papadum with freshly cut onions and salad on the side. The mint chutney added a bit of warmth. I was all set and could smell the menu that was to follow.
- Tandoori Jhinga,
- Murgh Malai Kabab,
- Fish Tikka
- Barrah Kabab
Tandoori Jhinga (Prawns) – delicately spiced and cooked over charcoal, the flavours just burst in my mouth. So fresh and perfectly cooked, the large prawns were succulent. I would highly recommend this dish.
Murgh Malai Kabab (Boneless Chicken) – Cooked with cheese, cream and some spices, it is grilled to perfection.
Fish Tikka – For a seafood lover, this dish gets top marks, the delicately spiced fish, is cooked in a clay oven, giving it a very smokey and rich flavour. Just melts away in a bite.
Barrah Kabab (Char-grilled lamb chops) – This is highly recommended for any meat lover. Now this is absolutely amazing. Can get a bit messy, but who cares, the large bit was there to protect my clothes <wink>
- Assorted Naan (Indian Bread consists of Tandoori Roti, Romali Roti, and Mint Naan)
- Grilled Lobster (Special of the day)
- Dal Buhkara,
- Sikandari Raan
- Murgh Makhani
- Seekh Kabab
Before the basket of assorted Naan was set on the table, Harsh, the F&B manger came out with the largest I had ever seen. Ladies & Gentlemen I present to you the “Naan Bhukara”
Now before I dig into the main course, the piece de resistance was the Lobster. To celebrate the true crustacean in all its glory, it was grilled to perfection.
It was white, firm meat that was sweet and oh so, succulent. This is a decadent dish and its all its glory, it was eye pleasing and left me to devour the entire meat! See for yourself.
Dal Bukhara (Lentil Gravy)– The highlight and highly recommended! Gorgeous, absolute gorgeous. Soul food, if I had to eat this dish on its own, I would. It is made of black lentils that have been cooked overnight and simmered on slow charcoal fire, it is served with a dollop of butter. It is a rich dish, one definitely made for the Royals.
Sikandari Raan (Leg of spring lamb roast) – A true King’s meal this! This tender Lamb is marinated with mild spices and left to cook over a tandoori for over 8 hours or so. Soul food for the soul. A melt-in-the-mouth dish!
Murgh Makhani (Shredded Chicken in Tomato & Cashew) – Again simply divine. I am losing words as my palate was just enjoying each dish. Look at the picture, let it do the talking! All my senses were awake and I had hit food coma by now!
Seekh Kabab (Tender lamb mince) – This is skewered and grilled over charcoal fire. Very juicy. Spices are just perfectly blended it.
- Gulab Jamun
- Sweet Pan
Kulfi – I really liked this dessert, not too sweet but had a very earthy flavour made of condensed milk and topped with dry fruits, the corn starch vermicelli and rose syrup, added the right texture, it was really rich and smooth. A different take on ice-cream. Served nice and chilled!
Gulab Jamun – I was really stuffed by this time, and hence couldn’t get to taste this dessert. But we all love a Gulab Jamum don’t we?
Sweet Paan – This is a palate cleanser and a breath freshener after a meal. It is considered as a digestive aid! Nicely wrapped. I loved the cherry on top!
To finish off my lovely meal, I had a shot of double Espresso! I was uber stuffed and just could not move off my seat. If anyone is planning on having a foodie trip to the North of India, I urge you to not give this one a miss as its in the heart of city! Head Chef Riaz, really hats off to you and your hospitality and your staff.
The Chef felt he received the best compliment via my facial expressions, each time I bit into his magnificent creations, I just couldn’t wipe the smile of my face and the sound effects of my palate bursting with flavours. Top marks as it is definitely a Food lovers delight!
Leave your comments below if you have tried any of the dishes above, and what is your all-time favourite at The Royal Afghan! I hope you enjoyed reading and my pictures (clicked on my Nikon D3200).
The Royal Afghan is opened only over the weekends for lunch, as the preparation time for each of the dishes is long and the serving is very lavish! Advanced booking a must.
Lunch: 12 Noon to 3:00 P.M. (Saturdays and Sundays).
Dinner: 7:00-11:30 P.M. (Daily)
About ITC Windsor, Bengaluru – is a luxury hotel in Bengaluru, merges an old world ambience with international service to create a hotel experience that goes beyond expectation. This has to be Bengaluru’s finest when it comes to fine dining experience. ITC Windsor presents an eclectic choice for Indian and international diners. Combined with its ambience of elegant luxury, warm hospitality and superlative accommodation options, ITC Windsor offers the finest in 5-star business hospitality in Bengaluru. Connect with ITC Windsor
© 2016, Skinnygirldiariez.com. All rights reserved. Do not copy and reproduce text or images without permission.
**Disclaimer: Even thou the invite was complimentary, all views expressed are my own.