Fatso what will you eat
Like the way most devoted comrade-in-arms and colleagues conduct themselves, a few of them introduced me to a running joke on a social networking site. What do you ask a girl to eat on a date when you are broke? The answer -- Moti, kya khayegi? Keep the crudeness and foolhardiness aside (wonder how many men can actually utter those words and face the consequences) and you are left with the essential message -- 'when you are broke'! In times when folks are joking about taking a petrol loan to commute and bank balances have a tendency to give size-zero lingerie models a complex, value for money is a serious issue.
The place is value for money
Mandarin Express, a month or so old restaurant in Saket might not able to guarantee you an 'I do' in the near future but if you are a cash-strapped lover, a date lunch here won't make you ask that terrible question and crash land your love ride even before it has taken off.
I ended up at the place yesterday for lunch (alone though so I didn't have to ask anybody the above mentioned question). To start with, Mandarin Express is not the only one in the vicinity which caters to the young crowd in Anupam complex in Saket, (you have Zook, Pizza Hut, McDonalds including one which serves Chinese a few meters away). It's your regular Chinese food restaurant we all have adapted ourselves too but the catch here is -- it's worth your moolah.
The restaurant manger could have been your chubby doting aunt who loves to feed you whenever you drop in. The place is soothing with the mandatory red lamps 'Chinese' restaurants have gotten used to. Order a beer and sit by one of the window seats and watch the world go by as you wait for your starters.
The Crispy Konjee lamb here is crunchy and tangy and the Golden fried prawns juicy and succulent. And you can wash them down with a pint of Tuborg. The Black pepper chicken was also something I relished. Choose the right chicken breast or thighs, corn starch and a teaspoon of Sake (though I doubt they used it here) and you can't go wrong with this dish.
Eat with steamed rice or noodles. Vegetable options range from braised Seasonal vegetables in ginger garlic sauce to Stir-fried Eggplant with Schezwan Sauce. If you are a pork fan, chances are you'll find them only on the menu and not in the kitchen so stick to the chicken or lamb. Mandarin Express is your budget restaurant with the ambience and service thrown in as bonus. But mind you, the restaurant is in old hands but it's still young. Will the honeymoon last? Let's wait and watch.
At: PVR Anupam Complex, Saket
Timings: 11am to 1pm
Meal for two: Rs 500 + taxes