What do you expect when you go to a restaurant? Yummy, lip licking food, I guess that’s the first priority. And along with good food if you get nice and courteous service with smiling faces, eye catching décor and good ambiance, how that sounds folks….
That’s what we got when we recently visited Light Camera Action – Air Bar at Rajouri Garden, New Delhi. We came here for good food and got much more than that. The name of the restaurant sounded quite Bollywoody and it turned out to be a replica of an old styled filmy studio with displays of old Radiogram, Coke chiiler boxes, studio lights etc.
The best part about LCA is the sitting arrangement. It’s not a big hall that they have, but still they have very well utilised the space. The indoor sitting area is spacious and not congested with too many tables. The sitting area on the terrace (Air Bar) is also quite big and you feel like you are in an outdoor studio setting. The sitting area on the balcony is also quite tastefully done – not too crammed.
As soon as you make yourself comfy on your table, the first attraction is the cutlery holder on table, with “churi kaata or chamach” printed on them, and the dancing glass. The Bollywood theme is evident all over the place, tripod tables, cinema lights, selfie wall on the stairs, sharabi dancing glasses etc. etc.. The staff t-shirts with “aata majhi satakli” on the back added interesting touches to this place.
The menu had Bollywood based dialogues used as names of dishes with proper explanations. “Pran jaye par paneer na jaye”.. Nacho sare jee faad ke… makes one smile and feel relaxed.
Fusion molecular gastronomy is another feature at LCA. Molecular gastronomy is a lot of hard work and needs a lot of perfection before you can get the right combination for a perfect taste. And chef Mr Aman Puri seems to have perfected it, and the result is great taste, fun and uniqueness of the restaurant
Coming to the foody part now, the first welcome dish was a sphere shaped wobbly bomb on a spoon. Listed as Mathura styled Kesar Pista Lassi sphere, this is served to guests as a complimentary dish. It was flavored with the right amounts of kesar (saffron) and pista (pistachio). As soon as I took the entire sphere in my mouth it exploded and filled my senses with the exotic flavours. The dash of flavors of kesar and crunchy finely chopped pistas made me feel divine. The other complimentary dish was the flavoured popcorn reminding me of old time cinema theaters where we used to buy and munch on popcorns during and after interval.
Well it was not the INTERRVAL here at LCA – this was just the beginning of a 70mm blockbuster thriller. Next came, Chammak Challo, a leafy salad of orange segments, onions and lettuce with zesty dressings of orange juice and other ingredients. I’m not really a salad person but enjoyed this one a lot…
Mr. Varun Puri was there with me for this food journey and he explained the story behind Rajnikant’s Early Morning Tea – the soup item from South India, a piping hot and spicy Rasam. It was served like the street chai, in a crate carrying a aluminum kettle and cutting chai glasses. He happily explained and prepared the Chai right there on the table from curry leaves as a substitute to tea leaves and coconut dextrose as a substitute to milk powder. The tangy taste of this rasam was just great.
Next came the surprise of the day for me. Mr Aman came out of his kitchen and started making the famous “Chandani Chock to China Nitrogen Chaat”. It was really worth watching and filming! The flavoured curd was first frozen at -176 degrees using liquid nitrogen. The frozen curd crumbs meet frozen dhoklas, fried spinach leaves, papri, boiled potatoes- all of which are poured over with Dhokla water. Then came a generous squeeze of curd, mint-coriander chutney and tamarind sauce. Garnished with typical sev and pomegranate, the mighty chaat was all mine to dig in. The dish was full of delightful surprises, with so many components, every spoonful of it tasted different. Chaat was chilled and crisp till our last bite on plate.
Next we tried their Vada pav, which were miniature bite-sized pavs served along with mint chutney and chillies in a wooden basket. Titled Bhiku mhatre vada pav, they reminded me of the streets of Mumbai. Another dish which took us to the streets of Mumbai was the Eishtyleish Sev Poori.
Next we were served Pyaar Tune Quesadilla – Mexican Quesadilla fusion created with Kohlapuri flavor served with salsa and aioli. The Quesadilla were sweet, tangy and spicy. Vegetarian Murgh Tikka followed and they were soya tikkas cooked in the tandoor perfectly and served with the traditional mint chutney.
The presentation of Jhakaas Maska Pav bhaji was superb. The bhaaji was served in a clay pot and the pav were cut into cubes and had to be eaten with a skewer dipping them in the bhaaji.
The 3 Idiots Naanza was a naan with pizza like toppings. The one we had had bell pepper, olives and jalapeno topping and was loaded with cheese. It tasted just like a thin crust pizza- quite wholesome and well baked. Listed as Dil Chahta Hai. It was an unusual combination that tasted really good. However, the dough was slightly chewy.
Dessert Section is again with some funky and funny names. We picked “Bole Toh”. It was a mix of Rabri and Oreo with some chocolate syrup. The soft creamy Rabri made out of skimmed milk was full of kesar flavor and I wished it had never ended.
We had Summer cooler from the drinks section and found it to be a perfect blend of cranberry, green apple and orange juice….
This recent addition to the Culinary scene of West Delhi was just too good. And, hence this longish blog. The place is already so popular that even on a Monday afternoon, the place was packed. Overall we also had a great experience at LCA and we are dying to go back there to enjoy the food and the filmy drama.
Here are my ratings for Light Camera Action –Air Bar,
Décor : 4.5/5 Hospitality : 5/5 Food : 5/5 Budget : 4.5/5 Location : 4.5/5
Location : J2/6B, 3rd Floor, BK Dutt Market, Rajouri Garden (walking distance from Rajouri Garden Metro Station)
Note: Images of the dishes are of sample tasting sizes served to us.Review done on invitation from the establishment and views expressed are entirely ours and without any bias.
Video Link :