After a long while I had a pleasant, unperturbed and sumptuous buffet experience. Tamara absolutely changed my perspective towards this format of dining that has been much polluted in recent times by few loud joints who try to serve everything from Mutton Roganjosh to hookah! 🙂 Without any hint of doubt, Tamara is the next best place to have a buffet meal at reasonable rates in this part of the city after Barbeque Nation. This place gives an unparallel ambiance which is better and more comfortable than the best in the business.
The optimum fusion of urbane infrastructure with a tranquil meditative environment sets this elegant restaurant a class apart! Dining at this place is an experience! It surely uplifts the mood of the guests with its amazing food, attentive service and calm atmosphere. Overall, it redefines simplicity. The word ‘Tamara’ means spice. The valiant spices and herbs of diverse cuisines from around the globe come home to meet at Tamara; this is sort of a melting pot of natural color, taste and texture of cuisines which are poles apart.
LOCATION – – – – – The place is located at first floor of Pipal Tree Hotel which is located close to City Centre 2 mall. If you are coming from Saltlake sector-5 then you need to cross City Centre 2 mall and go ahead, on the left you will then find Pipal Tree (with huge glass windows) much before you reach the Chinar Park crossing. You can park your car right in front of the Hotel without any hassle.
AMBIANCE – – – – – Pipal Tree Hotel in itself is quite classy and luxurious. The boutique hotel delivers class, excellent food, a touch of tradition and great hospitality with a breath of fresh air. Tamara is its 72-seater global cuisine restaurant; it serves Indian, Oriental, Italian, Continental and Mediterranean cuisine. It is one of the top romantic restaurants in town (specially if you are in for dinner). When you are here for lunch you will have a lovely time watching the city traffic though the huge glass windows (or rather walls) while having your food in the swanky couches. The unique dramatic ceiling décor will surely catch your attention when you first walk into this place; the special shamiana style fabric is gathered in billows across the ceiling within which you will find illuminated brass bowls emerging like pleasant stars.
Stone table tops are quite fascinating though they are actually stone-finished sunmica pasted on wooden tables. Also to go with it, you get stonewares like heavy stone glasses for drinking water. The lovely pristine white crockery adds to the mood. The place has the buffet spread in a rather small section beautifully presented, that gets cluttered when loads of people try to take their food at the same time. The place is designed as a long alley which has got its pros and cons. The place is not very spacious due to this elongated structure but still the sitting area is not cramped up. The place has got loads of natural sunlight during the day for the huge glass walls on two sides that really sets a laid back mood which is best to enjoy a buffet lunch. The place has got a meditating Buddha statue, set of ‘diyas’, earthen pots with spices at the entrance that is beautifully presented and signifies the peaceful ambiance in there and exudes warmth and romanticism.
The waiters are dressed in traditional wear that goes so well with the ambiance and they hand you aromatic wet towels to get fresh (the moment you settle down).
FOOD – – – – – The state-of-the-art infrastructure, gorgeous ambiance and warm service somehow increase the appetite the moment you get seated at this place. The buffet spread at this place is literally huge and it is almost impractical for an individual to have all the dishes in good quantity. I gave my best shot and tried each and every dish at this place in small quantities 🙂 On that day, the fuchka was not there in the starters so that was kinda miss, but we didn’t miss it that much since the spread in itself was enormous.
I tried Veg Lemon Coriander Soup and Chicken Sweet Corn Soup to start with. The soups were rather bit too simple and soothing, but they could have been a bit tastier.
In the starters I tried Lasooni Paneer Tikka, Veg Croquette, Achari Tandoori Aloo, Bhatti ka Murgh, Masala Mutton Scotch Eggs, Murshidabadi Chingrir Piyaji, Pan Fried Hakka Chilli Fish. I would say the Masala Mutton Scotch Eggs looked very promising with half filling of minced mutton and another half of boiled egg, but they were pretty dry and tasted mediocre. The Murshidabadi Chingrir Piyaji (shrimp and minced onions fried in besan batter) was wonderful and I tried a couple of them, it tasted great. Lasooni Paneer Tikka and Bhatti ka Murgh (chicken tandoori) were nice and true to their names. Pan Fried Hakka Chilli Fish was again amazing to taste, the fish in there was fresh and well marinated. The Veg Croquette was nothing but Vegetable chop (Bengali street-food style) with mix of veggies and ground nuts in there, tastes pretty good.
There were 8 kinds of salads and I tried a few, like the Mediterranean Pasta Salad, Greek Salad, Crispy Noodle Salad, Homegrown Sprout Salad, Dahi Wada Chaat, Egg Mayonnaise Salad, Russian chicken Salad. Among these, I absolutely loved the Mediterranean Pasta Salad, Greek Salad, Egg Mayonnaise Salad and Russian chicken Salad. Infact I overate the Egg Mayo Salad, it had boiled egg whites drenched in mayo and minced veggies and tasted fresh and heavenly. But I didn’t like the noodle salad that much, it was very dry with no real taste.
The main course looked mouth-watering to be very true, so I actually tried most of them. Here I went for Spinach Ricotta Cannelloni, Aloo Shimla Mirch, Veg Diwani Handi, Amchuri Bhindi, Dal Maharani with Indian breads, Steamed rice, Burnt Garlic Noodles, Cottage Cheese Manchurian, Vegetables in Thai Green curry with Herbed rice, Mutton Kosha, Kerala Egg Roast, Bhopal Murgh Rezala, Char Siu Chilli Pork Sausages, Mixed Chilli Garlic Noodles and Grilled Fish in Lemon Butter Sauce. Now here in these dishes, there were several star dishes that can make you go weak at the knees 🙂 I simply loved the Thai Green curry with Herbed rice. I overate the Char Siu Chilli Pork Sausages, they were prepared to perfection in lovely aromatic sauces along with bell peppers and onion rings. Then there were Mutton Kosha and Kerala Egg Roast, both were amazing to say the least. The Mutton Kosha goes well with steamed rice in an unbeatable Bengali dining style! The mutton pieces were extremely well marinated and cooked; they were spicy, so tender and juicy. The Murgh Rezala, Spinach Ricotta Cannelloni and Aloo Shimla Mirch were all good, if not great. Both the noodles were extremely disappointing, they lacked the flavors and were tad too dry. While I write this review I repent not having more of that Grilled Fish in Lemon Butter Sauce, oh it was awesome, it was divine, the fresh well marinated fish and that lovely preparation was somewhat unbeatable! Overall the mains will leave with super satisfied and extremely filled.
The dessert counter was quite big with numerous mouth-watering options. I tried some of them like – White Forest Pastry, Hot Gulab Jamuns, Chocolate Tarts, 5 varieties of Ice Creams with numerous add-ons (in the Ice cream bar), Misti Doi and Rabri Shots, Shahi Tukra & Seasonal Fresh Fruit Truffle. I just loved the Chocolate Tarts for being so perfect and just hated the White Forest Pastry for being so tasteless. The Gulab Jamuns were super-soft and amazing, so was the Shahi Tukra but it was overtly sweet. The Misti Doi and Rabri Shot was the true gastronomical wonder, it had great Misti Doi with rabri mixed inside served in lucrative tequila shot glasses, and it was so good that I kept on having those though my stomach was fully stuffed 🙂 The Ice Cream bar was my last stop for the day.
I took my time in selecting the Ice Cream flavors and then the toppings. I went in for Chocolate and Mango flavors with toppings like crushed Oreo biscuits, chocolate wafers, chocolate sauce, dried fruit chips, crushed nuts, dried fruits, etc. The final outcome was just amazing! I finished that stuff in a jiffy 🙂
SERVICE – – – – – The service is again very prompt, attentive and courteous. They kept changing our soiled plates and we never had to ask them to get those cleaned. They kept on asking me about the food and asked for overall feedback of the place. The staffs and the in-charge were all very polite, graceful, well informed and warm. No negatives in terms of service.
CONCLUSION – – – – – Here are my granular ratings:
Food quality: 4.2/5
Food presentation: 3.8/5
Value for money: 4.1/5
The restaurant has got an enchanting aura of romance in its beautiful ambience and scrumptious food. It is a perfect blend of modern and traditional elements. Like the sacred and legendary Bodhi tree, this Pipal Tree does a top notch job of providing a warm, relaxed, lovely dining experience. This place gives you the enlightenment and soul satisfaction in this domain of buffet meals. The diversified items on the food menu is sure to entice you, this is kinda paradise for all the food lovers. Big thumbs up from my end 🙂