Indian Express: No Monkey Business

May 17, 2011
L'Angoor

24-11-2010

L’Angoor, the new North American diner on MG Road, Gurgaon, is only worth a casual night out

It was our curiosity over the name that prompted us to book a table for two at L’Angoor — the new fine-dining restaurant in Gurgaon, serving North American cuisine. Surrounded by the glass towers of Global Business Park, MG Road, the 40-cover restaurant is packed to the brim when we get there on a Saturday night, so much so that we are glad we made our booking in advance.

Inside, natural oak parquet floors, dim ambient lighting, old school music and the subtle ecru decor build up a mood of anticipation. The restaurant houses more than 130 brands of wines in their cellar on the first floor. Through the open kitchen we could see head chef Hitesh Gupta and his team of five bustling around frantically.

As we pore over the menu, waiters hover nearby, nervously efficient and eager to please. We are rather slow to order, since our attention is held by their custom-made cutlery, featuring two langurs holding grapes — a comical take on the Hindi pronunciation of the restaurant’s name. When we finally get down to business, we begin the meal with the L’angoor chicken with mustard, infused in cabernet sauvignon wine (Rs 380), whose portion size was a pleasant surprised. The chicken was cut to bite-sized pieces and the tenor of the wine complimented the pungency of mustard to perfection. For the main course, we ordered the grilled Mediterranean red snapper, served on a bed of pepper salsa (Rs 580) and the Jamaican spiced jerk chicken with cilantro flavoured rice (Rs 520). The fish was cooked well, and retained its original flavour, but was unfortunately paired with a very sad assortment of oily paprika slices. It left us a little confused — the flavours were halfway between a Punjabi spiced chicken and a gourmet North American main course. While the chicken was too spicy to be eaten alone, combining it with the rice resulted in a clash of flavours. Clearly not the best main course we could have settled for.

To salvage the mood we needed a miraculously savoury dessert. The chef’s dessert special, we were informed, was made in limited quantities and did not feature on the menu. Thankfully, there was still one chocolate zabaglione (Rs 500) left and we heartily welcomed the whipped mousse with chunky dark chocolate, topped with miniature blueberries (Rs 500). The contrasting textures of the creamy mousse and the hard dark chocolate made for a luscious mix, quite making up for the earlier disappointment.

Final verdict? L’Angoor is perfect for a casual night out with friends, but not if you are looking for a gourmet experience.

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