Chili vodka is my staple poison at the Delhi press club. I didn’t know if other places served this and I was too embarrassed to ask anytime fearing a dismissive glance from behind the counter. So when the menu card at Le Meridien said there is one such cocktail to be had, I promptly ordered two. They have named it Hot Affair, which is Green Chili infused vodka with Ambi Paani. How apt is that!
It is chili promotion time at the Meridien so not just the vodka pretty much everything has been spiced up to sizzle your taste buds and leave you panting for more. Even before the vodka got over, the good hosts got me Teen Mirch Ka Jhinga, marinated with Bird’s Eye chili, Byadagi chili, black pepper and char-grilled saffron and honey yoghurt. The prawn was succulent and the chili just right so that you don’t have to gulp down glasses of cold water to douse the fire coming out of your ears.
For the mains, I went straight for Laal Maas (Rajasthani hot lamb curry cooked with Jaisalmer chili) with Hari Mirch Parantha and Jalapeno and Goat Cheese Naan. I have Laal Maas and not much else every time I venture out to Rajasthan and I have to say this that most restaurants in Delhi somehow manage to goof up when they prepare the dish here. Meridien thankfully got it right. If you have a taste for dishes from down south I suggest you order the Chettinad Pepper Chicken, spiced up with chili from Tamil Nadu.
All these were burp-inducing enough to make me get up and take a long walk, but the Bong palate needs a dessert to wind up a good meal. So, Mango Chili Kulfi was ordered and had with no thoughts given to calorie control.
Science says the body burns more calories when the same food is eaten with chili. We say just go ahead and make the most of this special chili promotion!