I had heard so much about Samarkand, on Infantry Road, that I was beginning to fear the expectation would outstrip the reality. But I am glad to say that was not the case. Hidden towards the back of a huge building, Samarkan’s location could be a classic case of blink-and-miss, if not for wide-eyed vigilance. At first glance, the restaurant seemed to be a poky place, and my spirits started to dip. But I quickly realised the initial feeling was probably because the subdued lighting inside was in complete contrast to the bright daylight outside. The restaurant is quite spacious, and done up in a quaint Northwest frontier sytle with faux torches and ambience.
The menu, (pix above) in the form of tabloid newspaper sheets, has interesting tid-bits of information about the name, the region and the cuisine. I was a little amused with the long, coloured breadsticks served at the table as soon as we were seated, but the food was lip-smackingly delicious. We tried tandoori salad, an Afghani fish starter, lamb biriyani, Dal Afghani, rotis and saffron rice. And I must say, every dish was lovely. I loved both the rice dishes – the biriyani was full of the gentle aromas of the spices and the tender lamb; the saffron rice was so delicately flavoured that it could be eaten without any accompaniment. The rotis were soft and fluffy and the dal, flavourful. I quite enjoyed the experience – do check it out.