Travelling is excellent for a dull heart. Spending quality time with nature not only helps physically, but has a great impact on the mind as well.
This, I understood well, after I stepped in the gateway of Aravali Tent Resort.
The rough unkempt path to the entrance isolated at lunchtime is both charming and alarming at the same time. Locals know the resort as ‘That Tenthouse place’. And thank goodness, I knew the alias because searching for ‘Caramel Restaurant’ was proving to be unsuccessful.
The resort and the restaurant are located in Samor Bagh and designed to prove away from the city’s din. Ground hugging trees and greenery lenify the confusion and make easy acquaintance with the eyes.
The entrance directly faces the restaurant, the door to which is through the reception of the Hotel. The main dining hall is lined with soothing paintings and flowers embellish the dining tables.
The diners are left all by themselves at frequent intervals and the settled dust is unnerving, but the calm environment placates.
The menu was limitative, providing traditional Indian food, the list of which was also not exhaustive. Without tarrying further I ordered my lunch.
Lemon Coriander Soup
The first look of the soup was troubling. The gravy wasn’t clear and it seemed to be garnished by coriander, instead of being prepared with it. The first sip though wasn’t as mighty let down as would be expected.
Traces of lemon were found but yes, coriander was lacking, majorly. The soup was a tad too sweet than it’s supposed to be but, as skeptical as I was, it was appetizing to a great extent.
My complaints of comparison to the ideal soup kept aside, the one I’d been served wasn’t disappointing. If you love this soup, then you’d be annoyed, though. Hence, the soup was easily passable.
Crispy Baby Corn
The first look of this starter was unsettling. I took it to be the Paneer Makhani of the main course because the baby corn came with gravy! The first bite was a new development again, because the baby corn weren’t crispy.
Capsicum, onion, cabbage leaves supplemented the soft corn. To my surprise, they tasted better than average. Neutral garlic (thank God!) made up my day. The two complains: The dish wasn’t made by the book and was sweet as the soup! Caramel had started to live up to its name!
Smoked Tomato Paneer Makhani
I apologize for the redundant ‘first look’ but this dish’s first look was also misleading. There was no gravy with this cottage cheese setup. It was misleading because the paneer makhani tasted incredible. The kitchen couldn’t provide us Tandoori of Naan, but butter Paranthas were sufficient.
The lack of gravy was missed but buttermilk replaced the fluid. The smoked tomato weren’t distinguishable, almost absent. Still the dish was delectable, yet again, not by the book.
The affair with food, as the tagline suggests was natural. All three of the dishes were not picturesque but strongly gripping. A second ‘but’ waits for its turn! But, if reviewed according to the prices, they weren’t to the mark.
There is also a fact worth noting. Everything they presented was a tad too sweet! As if they wanted to live the name of the restaurant.
The bill almost reached the Rs. 500 ribbon, at Rs. 486. The Baby Corn and Paneer Makhani were offensively expensive at Rs. 170 each. The buttermilk and paranthas were saviours and the soup stood at Rs. 60. Only if the rates were a little lower, the food would have been feasible as well.
If you have no clinch for money, the place is worth visiting after sunset. I can imagine the pleasure!
Later, I was given a tour of the beautiful tent rooms. I think I fell in love with the concept. The small cozy rooms, all attached with highly sanitized bathrooms, were a heart stealing. But apart from the tents and the vigorously cool atmosphere, they can’t help with any other attractions.
Also, worth mentioning is the fact that they don’t accept card payments and today, while lunching I experienced a power cut, of which there was no alternative provided. Rest all assured, the food, which is the focus of the review, is tasty.
There is a website and a Facebook page for the Aravali Tent Resort that can be visited for more information. The serving staff is well behaved and the managers are eager to receive criticism.
If you have, please share experiences in comments below. Also, if you want a restaurant to be reviewed, please suggest so in the comments.
Have a happy weekend!