Di Ghent

IMG_0665It’s hardly ever that a restaurant gets everything right; Di Ghent on the other hand makes it look so easy. It might be located in the unassuming Cross Point Mall market, but it comes across as quaint, due to the décor, and cute, because of its size. Now, its (very) small size might be of concern for some but the host manages the place well as I saw her scurry about and get a table for seven ready within minutes. There’s also a sense of closeness between the customers, almost as if you can start a conversation with compete strangers sitting next to you; which we did thanks to my son moving on about the place. All this is somewhat familiar and authentic to European cafes and if I might say, very comforting and laid back as well.

My biggest issue when visiting a new restaurant is what to eat? Not that there isn’t food I want, rather the case being the opposite, that there’s so much I want to try but it’s just not possible.

Now, once you’ve been charmed by the host who by the way KNOWS about the food being served, the hard decision is choosing what to eat. Once again you can ask for a recommendation or if like me you decide to have a Claus Panini in a “cold” baguette, you’ll be politely informed that it would taste better as “hot” but obviously the choice is mine. Who am I to fiddle with what the chef/host recommends, so I go ahead with the hot version.

Di Ghent serves Belgian and Austrian food so expect a lot of waffles, pastas, chocolate themed dishes, breads and sandwiches of all sorts (I was quite impressed with the variety of breads available), and who can forget coffee and cake.

I started the meal with a Dark Chocolate Oreo Milkshake which after the longest of times (of having similar stuff elsewhere) had the perfect concentration; being neither too thin or thick with just the right amount of sweetness. Yum!

The Claus as mentioned above consisted of Parma Ham, Mozzarella, Rucola, and Mayonnaise. I was extremely pleased that when the baguette came it was not “hot” but rather on the warmer side which kept the crunch of the bread intact. I’ve lived in Germany for four years and travelled extensively in the surrounding regions and all I’ll say is that from the first bite till the last I was very much back in Europe.

Now although I didn’t get a chance to taste what the others had, I did however have some of the leftovers from my daughter’s Penne in White Sauce which was specially made for her without any veggies or visible seasoning as she likes things plain and simple. I’m happy to say that the white sauce was brilliant and made this most basic of pastas quite tasty. I also tried a bit of the hot chocolate that my daughter left, kids I tell ya!, and that too was delicious.

IMG_0666As for the sweet tooth, Desserts have to be shared. You can obviously have your own plate but off late I’ve realised that there’s a certain Indian-ness and fun is sharing sweets at the end of a wonderful meal no matter where you are. Just place the plate in the middle and everyone digs in. So, we opted for the Vrijdagmarkt (a Belgian hot chocolate fondue served with vanilla ice cream and a hint of liquor) which was quite close to a Lava cake with semi-oozing chocolate inside a “muffin” for the lack of the right word. So, not your conventional fondue where you dip food into chocolate. Nevertheless, it tasted divine. The surprise for me though was the Lemon Cake with its super sponginess and lemon that didn’t dominate the slice of cake, but also did justice to the name.

Finally, the bill came out to be for Rs 4200, which considering that it consisted of 5 mains, 5 drinks, and 2 desserts, isn’t bad at all.

Di Ghent is a wonderful place to while away some time and enjoy some good food as you do that. Many a times when a place becomes famous, the owners tend to start taking the fame and fortune for granted, but at Di Ghent there was a sense of pride in the work and the food not only because it is a business but also because it is something the owners obviously are passionate about and love to do.

I just can’t wait to go back and try something new.

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