If there’s one cuisine that’s sure you get any Indian food lover in high spirits, it’s Punjabi. Vivanta’s Dhabedaar Fridays is an invitation to jump start your weekend with the vibrant flavours from Punjab, accompanied by free flowing spirits and peppy Bollywood tunes spun by the DJ.
The buffet for the Dhabedaar Fridays showcases the robust flavours of the rustic dishes popular in dhabas that dot the highways across Punjab. The buffet spread packs a serious punch; with eight appetisers, over twenty main courses, and more than half a dozen desserts. And oh, there’s also a live counter that dishes out Tawa fried Chicken, Burjees, Parathas, Jalebis and more.
A couple of weeks back, I was invited to a blogger’s table. In the recent past, many diners in the city have been experimenting with lesser known recipes from the villages of Punjab in an attempt to stand out from the ever growing crop of Punjabi restaurants. Dhabedaar buffet bucks this trend. The spread makes it quite obvious that the focus is on presenting food that everyone knows and loves. The dishes that impressed among the appetisers were Gosht Seekh Kebab, Aloo Kumbh ka Seekh, Bhatti ka Chooza, and Achari Tandoori Tangdi. A surprisingly delightful rendition of the winter favourite Sarson da Saag and Makki ki Roti and the robust and fiery Rara Gosht were the high points of the main course. The Rara is immensely enjoyable by itself, and perhaps even more so with a peg of whisky. The leafy Murgh Saagwala and the creamy Murgh Makhni were rich but mellow and provide a welcome change of gears after the spicy Rara. There’s also a whole host of homely, comfort food on the menu that is perfect to wrap up the night with after getting sloshed. Kadhi Pakoda, Rajma Masala, Chhole Masala, Aloo Mutter ka Sabzi are just a few of options available. Besides the usual western desserts, Viva had Apple and Pineapple Jalebi, Ghee Jalebi, Chocolate Peda, Besan ki Laddoo, Suzi Halwa, and Kheer on offer to satiate our sweet-tooth.
The Dhabedaar Fridays promotion will be held at Viva 7:30 PM onwards on every Friday. The food on offer has little that’ll surprise you, but this event is not about being clever or chic. Dhabedaar Fridays is all about celebrating the arrival of the weekend with rich and scrumptious food and free flowing liquor. Perhaps the only weak point is the liquor selection that offers the usual white spirits but only features King Fisher beer and Royal Challenge Whisky. I was told that a retooling of the liquor options is in the pipeline and better quality blended whiskies might be included in the package soon. At Rs 1850 (all-inclusive), Dhabedaar Friday is quite a good deal.