It was a foggy winter afternoon when I visited California Boulevard at Rajouri garden. As I stepped into this restaurant nostalgia struck me. The walk of fame , a Harley Davidson occupying the position of pride, walls adorned with pictures of various Hollywood stars and a live screen that dishes out trivia on your favourite Hollywood movies and stars .This place spells Hollywood. The place is dimly lit which actually enhances the decor. It brought back memories of lazy evenings ,spent on walk of fame , joyously spotting stars of my favourite actors. In fact the restaurant’s named California Boulevard because the founder feels California reflects world cuisine and that’s a sentiment I echo as well.
I slid into the plush sofa with Meryl Streep watching over me and ordered my mocktail which was the Thai refresher, a drink with Kaffir lime leaves that stays true to its name.
For starters we had Dilli ki chaat which has been innovated. The crispy spinach leaves served as the perfect base for the curd and chutney combination. The som tam was fresh, chewy , and light. Their Caesar salad was one of the best I’ve had recently.
The Mezze mezze platter arrived on the table.To shake things up, the falafels were served on pita breads which were a work of art. The tabbouleh , which was a part of the platter was so delicious, that I could just eat that for main course , if given an option . Sushi Paneer , as intriguing as it sounds , had me bowled over completely by its appearance and flavour .It’s Chef Karen’s innovation and the real winner
.For the main course I tried the Ratatouille , which was cooked perfectly and will draw me back. The Spinach and ricotta cheese kofta was creamy, smooth and delicately flavoured.
The tempo of the meal continued with the desserts. The Tiramisu was a wonderful balance of flavours .Kulfi Gazak scores high on presentation and was appreciated by my friends. The NutellaTorte is chocolate and nutella paradise. It’s the perfect dessert for Chocoholics and a quick fix for trying days.My personal favourite however was Flambé bailey’s gulab jamun.The gulabjamun has an interesting gulkand filling, and the addition of baileys’helps balance sweetness. It was served with coffee cream which was light and went with the rich, bailey flavoured gulab jamuns.I loved this combination. The flambé did succeed in sizzling it up visually.
Every dish served in California Boulevard is not just a treasure trove of flavours but also a work of art. The credit to these magnificent visually appealing and flavourful food goes to Chef Karen. In her own words ,”As a kid the kitchen always fascinated me …it was a magical place where water, fire, air transformed the blessings of nature into mouth-watering dishes and desserts.” This childhood passion for the culinary art pushes Chef Karen Rawat to creating magic even today. I am looking forward to dining at their Gurgaon outlet soon after the fabulous experience at Rajouri Garden.