Food review: Surprised by taste

Spread over the top two levels of a building, Molecule enjoys significant views of Gurgaon’s earthly delights (read various food and beverage options). The space is vast, and while the molecule is everywhere, there’s a curious juxtaposition of a martial theme opposing it. Steampunk-style guns hang over one wall, while a Dr Doom-esque mask adorns another. Models of World War II fighter planes hang out sporadically, while war trivia itself punctuates every page of the menu.

Speaking of menus, this one here is a marriage of Indian street food with various cooking techniques, not the least of which is scientific. The restaurant will also be brewing its own beer very soon and will have a slew of molecular mixology.

The menu combines Indian street food with different cooking techniques

We’ll start with the Molecular Puchka Shots, Air Bread and the re-deconstructed Tokri Chaat. The puchkas or gol gappas as we like to call them come with five test tubes of different flavors of paani ranging from teekha to lychee and placed precariously in a cup while the saunth and chutney come in giant syringes all surrounded by a nitrous oxide cloud come out of the cup. It’s DIY at its best. Accompanying is the Air Bread, feathery and textured almost like a cloud, bursting with chicken marinated in Indian pickle and muddled with cheesy goodness; it’s dotted with green chili caviar for a final kick, which is sadly lacking given the reserved taste of the small scoop.

Our favorite dish is the Baby Mutton Seekh Kebab Puffs, beautifully crafted little packets, encasing tender chunks of meat; we could eat this every day. The chaat, meanwhile, is gathered at the table, presided over the altar by a chef armed with nitrogen coolers, foam and other paraphernalia, in what is now de rigueur for these types of establishments. It consists of quick-frozen winter berries, in addition to the usual chaat accessories, including a lot of yogurt in different textures; the chaat is nevertheless the same taste of the street.

Then there’s the decidedly iconoclastic Chicken Shawarma Burger. A succulent chicken thigh coated with zatar and sumac and topped with pickles and crisp lettuce. It comes breaded between toasted sandwiches with parsley mayonnaise, a raw kachumber and tsaziki and a side of fries and onion rings. We fight to the last crumb.

Dessert is Gulab Jamun Carpaccio Cheesecake, a dish that is as decadent as it sounds. Rounded strips of gulab jamun come layered over a biscuit base, dripping with chocolate rabri and sprinkled with pistachio, together making for a dessert only for the serious sweet tooth. What we are happy.

Meal for two: Rs 2,000 (including taxes, excluding alcohol)

Address: SCO 53, 4th Floor, Sector 29, Gurgaon. Contact person: 0124-33105241

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