Paradise, a legend since 1953- have managed to call themselves World’s Favourite Biriyani and my experience here totally justified it. This was my first visit to Paradise (overall) and my experience here was phenomenal.
To start of with a small background- Paradise chose Bangalore to set their first Out-of-Hyderabad restaurant, which was in Indiranagar. In the past one and half years they have managed to set up five fully fledged restaurants in this city, JP Nagar outlet being the 5th one.
LOCATION: JP Nagar, 24th Main road near Mayura circle. It is very difficult to miss this place as the building is so colourful and vibrant. They have valet parking facility, hence making it more accessible.
AMBIANCE: Bright and sparkling. The place is clean and looks very neat. The tables are spaced aptly, doesn’t make the interiors claustrophobic. Walls are adorned by the pictures of celebrities who have visited Paradise. There is seating in ground and upper floors. Nothing fancy in here, but I liked the simple theme that’s followed throughout. Dine-in and takeaway sections are different, a good way to check on crowd during peak times. Now, lets get to the point- FOOODD!
SOUPS: Since I was seated with my vegetarian friends, we ordered veg hot and sour soup.
It arrived in no time and was pipping hot. Slightly thick, so much that it needs to be consumed immediately. It packed a nice tangy punch, has mushroom and other veggies which are embedded perfectly.
STARTERS: Four options in each section (veg and non-veg) which feels like it is limited. But wait, there is a separate menu which caters to Kebabs. So overall, there are a lot of varieties to choose from. We were served samples of both vegetarian and non-vegetarian starters. It is worth mentioning that the chefs at Paradise have done a great job at offering Chinese starters in-spite of having its USP in Hyderabadi cuisine.
- Paneer 65 – These are basically Paneer pakoras tossed in chilly flavoured curd sauce which is induced deep inside as the Paneer is cut in small pieces.
- Chilli Paneer – Wok tossed cubes of Paneer, coated with chilli sauce, has a tangy feeling to it. Expected this dish to be more spicy.
- Veg Manchurian – Loved the taste of this particular item. Fried dumplings with veggie fillings and tossed in Manchurian sauce. It is picture friendly with so much of rich garnishing over it.
- Salt and Pepper Potatoes – They look like hybrid version of French fries, but have one bite and you realise why it is named salt and pepper! Mild hints of these two spices adds up to give you a tingling sensation on every bite.
- Veg Kebab Platter – A huge platter consisting of three different varieties of Kebabs- Paneer Harayali Tikka, Subz aur Moonghphalli Seeekh and Paneer tikka. Here, Moonghphalli sounded new and had a Chicken-sheekh-kebab like look to it. Each piece is covered by chucks of peanuts making it crunchy. It is dry from within so mint chutney is recommended.
- Chicken 65- It looks a lot similar to its Paneer counterpart, but for some reason I felt Chicken was able to retain more of batter/outer layer, making it more tastier.
- Chilli Chicken- Again, it looks like Chilli Paneer. I loved the way the starters are replicated making the same flavour accessible to both vegetarian and non vegetarian folks.
- Apollo Fish- Crispy fried fish tossed in a yoghurt sauce with green chillies and curry leaves. This was the first unique preparation amongst the starters that I got to taste. It has a yellowish appearance with chilli garnishes. Basa fish fillets used is proper (not hard nor soft) so it doesn’t get messy while eating.
- Chilli Prawns- Wok tossed deep fried tiger prawns, coated with tangy chilli sauce. Loved the batter laden prawns making it succulent on every bite. Sea food lovers should definitely order this and Apollo fish.
- Non Veg Kebab platter- One word to describe this is- colourful. It is a non vegetarian’s delight, the sight of it can make your mouth water .. We had red Mutton Seekh, Chicken Seekh, Tandoori Jhinga and Kalmi Kebab and other assorted Kebabs. My favourite amongst all these was Mutton Seekh followed by Tandoori Jhinga. Kalmi kebab was a standard affair in my opinion.
BIRYANI: I got to taste chicken biriyani and special Biryani from their menu. Was so full that I couldn’t dig into the veg biryani, though the feedback received from my fellow foodies was that it was devoid of any colour (usually associated with Biryani), but tasted good. I will make sure to try it during my next visit.
- Special Biryani is a unique and rare combination of lamb + chicken Biriyani served with traditional raita and salan. The quantity (and also the price) is massive! One portion can easily fill 3-4 tummies.
- Chicken Biriyani for me comes under the category of casual food. Taste here is way better than many Biryani outlets. The long basmati rice cooked in layers with saffron makes it a delectable delight.
DESSERTS: For some obvious reasons (taste of course), I felt desserts to be their USP after Biriyani. Lot of options to choose from and I am sure none of them will disappoint. Double ka meetha and Gajar ka halwa are heavy on stomach!! Fried and soaked bread slices in double ka meetha has lot of saffron and cardamom hints and is so soft that it literally melts in the mouth. Qubani ka meetha is a Hyderabad speciality. Qubani in urdu means ‘Apricot’. It is prepared from Apricot puree, basically a thick compote. It was garnished with ice cream making it more rich and added a bit of vanilla flavour. Finally we got our hands at Gulab Jamun, the Jamuns were slightly hard with a very (extremely) smooth texture. (I like it this way!!). Falooda here has some nice touches making it unique, some might not like the overpowering essence of rose syrup, but for people who are okay with it, this is a must have. It was a perfect end to our gastronomical journey
SERVICE: Impeccable to the highest extent. We were a big crowd and the staff did a good job of keeping the overall process smooth. Dishes kept coming at regular intervals and there was no goof up in the order in which it was bought. Paradise scores a full mark in customer satisfaction and this in itself is a good sign of a restaurant.