The banyan tree seemed bigger than I remembered it. Although I’m sure it’s more to do with my imagination than any pandemic-fuelled growth spurt. The little blue door, however, was still the same. My trip here last year seemed like a lifetime ago. Today, the staff was armed with QR codes, protective gear, and pre- packaged cutlery. The warmth, however, was still intact.
The tangy summer drink with jamun, preserved in-house over the last year, and beetroot was a welcome beginning on a hot day. Chef Dhruv Oberoi’s menu borrows heavily from evolving flavours, each dish featuring an au naturel, homebound ingredient, progressing from the acetic amla to the flavourful kundru.
Next in line was the marinated beetroot and plum, placed on a flaky, crusty pastry, and topped with copious amounts of nigella seeds. A serving of goat cheese with duck breast was an unlikely favourite. Be sure to try the stuffed artichoke and baked potato tossed in sage butter, or the braised pork belly cooked in an authentic Himachali curry for entrée. The lemon cheesecake on a graham cracker and almond crust is to die for, and don’t forget to pick up the ‘lockdown-inspired basket’. The dalgona cream, baked cookies, tiramisu, doughnut, and popcorn and coffee shot will satisfy all your midnight cravings.
Pro Tip: Try the tortellini with spinach and pumpkin. The garlic-infused sauce lends it a unique flavour.
Where: Olive Bar and Kitchen, Mehrauli
Address: 6-8, Kalka Das Marg, Mehrauli, New Delhi
Timings: 1pm-3:30pm and 7:30pm-12am; closed on Tuesday