Kishor Cariappa

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Restaurant review: The Yellow Chilli

First we had Chili’s, now we have The Yellow Chilli. The food scene in Muscat is getting hotter.

Yes, Oman now has one of master chef Sanjeev Kapoor’s casual dining restaurant chain. Sanjeev Kapoor’s chain of restaurants’ is across GCC, so Oman foodies get to indulge in The Yellow Chilli.

Located at Al Mouj Muscat (The Wave Muscat), the restaurant was officially inaugurated last week. Within the next few months, the second Yellow Chilli restaurant in Oman is said to be opening at the Panorama Mall in Ghubrah.

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Some of the popular names in social media circles in Oman were invited for a food tasting session at the newly opened restaurant and I was part of it.

While Executive Chef Manoj Radi who has trained under Chef Sanjeev Kapoor in India unveiled the story behind the dishes served in the restaurant, Tirthankar Basu, Business Head of Mazaya Oman, the company behind The Yellow Chilli in Oman, briefed about the brand.

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Coming to what we were served in the restaurant.

The welcome drinks included Coconut and Shrimp Shorba, Tomato Basil Shorba and Jal Jeera. I particularly liked the Coconut and Shrimp Shorba. It was appetising and not too rich – that is the way I like it.

For starters, we were served Dahi Puri, Channa Jor Garam Tikki, Shabnam Ki Moti (mushroom cooked in tandoor), Khusk Jhinga (coconut and garlic flavoured fried prawns) and Papaya Peanut Kachumber (salad).

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For main course, they served us Shaam Savera (spinach koftas filled with creamed cottage cheese and served floating on a velvety tomato butter gravy), Raan Buzzkazi (tandoori roasted leg of lamb with garlic and pepper), Nalli Rogan Josh (lamb shanks in rich gravy), Mangalorean Fish Curry, Ralli Milli Suziyan (fresh veggies tossed with spices) with an assorted combo of breads.

Shaam Savera, said to be Sanjeev Kapoor’s signature dish, is something unique. It looked good and tasted awesome. I don’t eat red meat so I have no idea about the lamb dishes. The fish curry was subtle and was a perfect match to the rotis served. Before I forget, we had chicken biriyani as well.

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For desserts, we had Makhan Elaichi Mousse (butter and whipped cream with crunchy cardamom crackers) and Zauk-e-Shahi (mini gulab jamoons served with rabdi and sweetened bread).

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Typical to the brand name the items were impeccably and attractively served in classiest of tableware.

The restaurant promises to sustain ‘Indianness’ in the dishes served while giving it a slight twist to make it deliciously different.

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Our dinner, which extended up to three hours, was about good food, knowledgeable chef and efficient service. Will I return to the restaurant? Yes, definitely. I have no clue about the cost per dish, but my guess is for a family of four the bill could come in the range of OMR 30 to OMR 40.

The restaurant offers indoor seating for 95 people, with an additional outside space for 40 diners during cooler weather (December to March). For reservations, call 2454 1717.