Hot List 2009

Varq, New Delhi

1 Mansingh Road

Tel: 91-2302-6162

Named for the gold and silver leaf that traditionally adorn Indian festive dishes, Varq, in the Taj Mahal Hotel, gleams with a gilded coffered ceiling and an exquisitely painted wall of Mogul-inspired art. Celeb chef Hemant Oberoi, of Masala Klub fame, draws on India's regional cuisines: Calicut prawns with asparagus are inspired by Kerala, while coriander duck with roasted coconut curry takes its cue from Pondicherry. Vegetarian dishes are just as exciting; don't miss the Bhartha Three Ways—eggplant, pumpkin, and tomato mashed with herbs and spices and gorgeously served up in their skins. End with refreshing tamarind sorbet, which arrives in a vented casserole spewing diabolical fumes of dry ice, and a silver leaf–covered paan.
Tip: In addition to a tempting cocktail menu, there is a strong complement of virtuous Vedic tisanes ( entrées, $10–$39).

Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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