MYKONOS: a good Greek restaurant in New Delhi

Battling the summer heat and a long powercut in Shahpurjat, 3 of us had lunch the other day at Mykonos, a cute, refreshingly simple and natural Greek restaurant.  Sonam had eaten there once before, but Asha and I were first timers.

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The restaurant is run by a Greek lady called Anastasia, who hails from Thessalonika, and is the probably the happiest person you will meet on any given day.  She is chatty, friendly, explains the menu, cheerfully apologises for her English (the day I can speak Greek, Anastasia, then we can revisit the question) and greeted us all like long lost friends, with kisses and bearhugs.

The A/C wasn’t working for most of lunch, due to the massive powercut, so the door was propped open, and we gazed at the trees outside, and we all made a promise that we’ll be back in the winter, to eat out on the tiny balcony with a tree top vista.

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The decor is white and blue and has a refreshing seaside feel to it, which was oh-so-welcome on a hot Delhi day.

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On Anastasia’s advice, we opted for a mezze platter, and several small dishes, so we could see what we liked, and it was the correct decision.  Cool mezze were just what we needed :

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The tzakiki and humous were too delicious, and as for the pita bread…fabulous.

I enjoyed the vine leaves (below) but was less keen on the sauce which I felt overpowered them.  Next time, I’ll have just dolmades:

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The Greek salad was lovely:

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The feta has a completely delicious, different taste from locally sourced feta as do the tomatoes, which had a rich taste.

As a vegetarian, this kind of food is perfect and what I crave.

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I didn’t have the coffee, but Asha assured me it was good and strong.  Nor did I have the dessert, which my companions told me was excellent.

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We paid own bill and I did not mention that I write reviews.

Personally recommended.

And a return visit is planned.

Emerging from the by now deliciously cool European feel A/C restaurant to this view was a bit of a culture shock…but what a view.

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Revisiting The Potbelly in Delhi

Almost a year to the day from my first visit –  a totally unplanned coincidence, by the way –  I revisited The Potbelly in Shahpurjat with Sonam and Ahilya, a young friend visiting from Singapore.

And what a pleasure it was to have lunch there again.

No dip in standards, equally great food, still a lovely location – as in thank goodness nothing has come up to spoil avery special airy view over the treetops – so yes, well worth a revisit.

We spent hours there, and lingered long after we had finished our delicious food, but there was no hint that we should hurry along.    A lovely, relaxed place.

Just as we did last year, we started with a pakora basket –  too, too good :

 

Sonam had chicken “ishtew”, and pronounced it excellent.

Ahilya had a pudina iced tea which she also declared delicious :

 

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I had Posta dana machhli (fish with poppy seeds) and it was very good, and the helping was nicely generous :

Just like the previous visit, I didn’t tell them I blog or write reviews and we paid our own bill.

 

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 Personally recommended.

 

Where to eat in Delhi’s Shahpurjat? Les Parisiennes, perhaps?

Nearly every time I go to Shahpurjat, which is usually to see my friend the designer Sonam Dubal, we end up at the charming cafe-boutique “Les Parisiennes”.

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A delightful space, elegantly and quirkily furnished, selling a mix of vintage and retro must-haves (think dresses, jewellery, accessories), and serving typical light French bistro style fare (think quiche, salad, gateaux – that kind of fare).

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I ask you what’s not to love?

I have been there with friends who went in for just for lunch and came out with a butter dish. Or stopped by for an afternoon cool drink and emerged with a glass cake stand they never knew they absolutely had to have.

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There is always retro style music playing, all vaguely Edith Piaf-y. The bathrooms are delightfully spotless.  The menu is written, bistro-style, on a blackboard.

I repeat, what’s not to love.

On a recent visit 2 days ago, on a broilingly hot Delhi summer afternoon, it was blissfully cool inside, and as I say every time I go there, “I could live here in Les Parisiennes”  – for it is a village house that had been beautifully transformed, but still feels like a welcoming home.

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I was very politely asked not to take photos on my last visit, so I didn’t, but on former visits I wasn’t stopped, so here is a quick look at a charming place that should be on everyone’s Shahpurjat To Do List.

 

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5-B, Dada Jungi House,

Shahpur Jat,

Delhi 110049

+91 88 26 51 89 43

+91 11 26 49 67 54

 

??? Personally recommended

I rate Les Parisiennes 10/10 for atmosphere.  8/10 for quality/portions/affordability of their food.  Have never shopped there, but friends have and love their crockery and glasses especially.

Open daily 10am-7pm

Sanskar Studio, in Delhi’s Shahpurjat

For the many loyal devotees and fans of Sonam Dubal’s couture, there is brilliant news afoot.

Sonam has recently opened Sanskar Studio in Shahpurjat, a cosy welcoming space where you can view his designs, as well as shop for clothing and accessories from a Calcutta based NGO, “Sasha”, an organisation very dear to Sonam’s heart.

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Up a tiny staircase, onto a little veranda, through the iconic red door, and you have arrived.

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The studio has only just opened, and so by the time you visit (and visit you should, you must) Sanskar Studio may well have evolved a little more, since it is being created slowly and lovingly, with new designs and products being added all the time.

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(Oh, by the way, this outfit, above, has my name on it.  Be warned…seriously, isn’t it gorgeous?)

Sanskar Studio is elegant, airy, welcoming and showcases the best of Sonam Dubal’s designs.

What’s not to love?

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Edward’s in Delhi’s HKV

Despite being a tad underwhelmed by Edward’s when I went there for lunch in March, I re-visited it last week for lunch with the same friend as last time, Asha Framji, as well as with our friend Sonam Dubal, whose first visit it was.

Sonam loved it, and I certainly liked it better a second time round, partly because the service was so much better, and way more efficient than the last time.

No major (read obvious) changes in 2 months, with the same cute décor, though it was certainly busier – oh, wait, yes, one noticeable thing – they have seriously nice take-away bags.  As in very smart and eye catching.

Sonam had the Caesar salad which he said was very good :

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Asha and I shared the brie salad and the pasta, and both were generous portions and very good.

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I am veg, so didn’t eat the ham (somehow missed it on the menu, as I would then have chosen differently) and neither did Asha, as she said it was a tad on the salty side, but the rest of the salad was excellent:

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I had the ginger ale, which was delicious and I loved the quirky glass.

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So, better meal and therefore a better “feel” than my earlier visit.

But I still think it’s pricey…

 

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Where to shop and eat in Delhi’s Shahpurjat

The urban village of Shahpurjat is changing fast.  Not quite as at-the-speed-of-light fast the way Hauz Khas Village is changing, but suffice it to say that every time I go for chai and chat with my friend Sonam Dubal in the village, it seems as though yet another boutique or yet another café has opened.

This week, three of us went for a walk through the village and discovered “The Wishing Chair”.

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It is utterly charming.  A cute gift shop and a café.  Actually it’s more than just cute, since it has both whimsical and funky things as well as serious statement pieces for sale.

A great place for gifts, especially unusual decorative pieces for the home.

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Lunch was perfectly nice.

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Tasty salad

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Clever mixed brown & white bread sandwiches

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Cute business card (with a map –  how sensible)

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Personally recommended.

Looking for That Jacket in Delhi ?

If you are in the market for a fabulously cut, one-of-a-kind jacket then you need look no further than the clothes of the talented, charming designer Sonam Dubal.

Sonam is now a friend, but he wasn’t the first time I saw his clothing, and promptly fell in love with his elegant pan-Asian designs.

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Sonam Dubal’s clothing is what I like to call Indo-fusion, with a strong Tibetan influence, so expect beautiful high collars and sweeping skirts, fabulous capes and dramatic long coats. And as for the linings of his clothes…they are almost works of art in their own right, fabulous jewel-coloured silks revealing a sudden flash of colour.

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His clientèle is as eclectic as the designer himself, and he has a strong, devoted following amongst both Indians and expats in India, and an equally strong customer base overseas.

Check out his website, to get an idea of his vision and designs:

www.sonamdubal.com

In Delhi, his work can be found in Ogaan, in Santushti and in Hauz Khas Village.

 

Sonam’s website lists the boutiques across the country and overseas, where his designs are available.

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Personally, strongly recommended.

ELMA’S in HAUZ KHAS VILLAGE, NEW DELHI

Hauz Khas village is changing at the speed of light, with new restaurants and shops opening seemingly every week.  I had heard about Elma’s Bakery & tea House in Hauz Khas for quite a  while, so last Friday Sonam and I went there for lunch.

The place is charming, with a real chintzy, English feel to it.  A lovely collection of tea-pots is dotted on shelves around the small restaurant, and there is even a tea-pot-covered piano in one corner.

They have lovely china –  pretty flowery cups and plates, in different designs, adding to the English tea-shop feel.

We both had smoked salmon sandwiches, which were delicious.  Lovely brown bread, generous amount of salmon, but Rs 350 for 4 tiny sandwiches ?

We both had tea.  Of course.

I was more adventurous than Sonam and tried echinacea and lemongrass (for serenity, I think it was ).

Nice, but Rs 100 per pot = non-serenity-making.

Sonam had pudding and declared it delicious.

So.

Verdict ?

Charming, nice relaxed service.  But I think Rs 1500 for sandwiches and tea for 2, and one small pud is expensive.

I didn’t tell them that I review/blog and we paid our own bill.