I love authentic desi food and miss it dearly in Qatar. Now you would say there are so many Indian/Pakistani restaurants, but most of them are altered in taste (spice-o-meter) to fit in with the masses – result: desiness lost!
Nonetheless, there are a few that remain my favourite but not as authentic. The only place so far that has come close to being original is Zaoq located at Salwa Road which is bubbling with people and never disappoints with their food. The restaurant sign says it’s Pakistani but has a lot of Indian/mughlai touches. I would say it’s a mix between the two countries.
It’s rather rare to come across Indian boutiques in Doha where authentic Mughlai cuisine is served. And, it goes without a doubt that, Grill at The Village Restaurant tops this limited list! Visiting them a few times in the past as well, this was a weekend dining place decided to treat a friend.
This stand alone edifice is impeccable and divided internally in three segments: Grill – specializes in cuisines from Persia, Lebanon & India. Medi – serves Mediterranean seafood-based Italian, Greek, Lebanese, Moroccan cuisine. Deli – here, you can enjoy fresh and simple in-house baked delicacies; more like a meet and greet place. The Grill is where we indulged into our Indian palate. Located on the first floor, what immediately attracts you is their dim lit bar that serves excellent mocktails and beverages. Private seating is what you opt for if you’re looking at a romantic getaway. For a contemporary and cozy evening, we chose their warm and vibrant ambience open dining area. Though full but easily allowing you privacy at the table.
‘You’re addicted to this place’ – a friend told me recently. Well, my answer was why not? This place deserves nothing less than an addiction. Their trophies speak for the fan following when recently they won 2 Qatar Choice Awardsas the favourite new comer and favourite cafe in just about 6 months from their opening.
Now you would wonder what’s so special about this Café – it doesn’t sell Latte nor Americano!!! It brings the authenticity of the Indian streets to the gourmet food world of Doha which is so rare to find or even to deliver outside Hindustan (the patriotic Indian in me is in full spirits just now). Zaffran Café started in full throttle end of 2013 and my initial visits were great with generous hospitality. To make sure this was consistent, I visited at different intervals and I was a fan forever.