You are not a true blue foodie if you haven’t tried the traditional Hyderabadi cuisine. Hyderabad is synonymous for its delicious biryanis but there is so much more to this cuisine of the Nizams.
After the immensely popular Zaiqa-E-Ramzan, Food Krafters & Services (FKS) has come up with its flagship restaurant, Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad on Road # 3, Banjarahills that promises to offer true flavors of Hyderabad. Was happy to have been invited for a review of this newly launched restaurant where Chef Pradeep Khosla – a well-known Chef & Food Critic and the CEO of Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad took us through the entire range of delicacies on offer.
We started off with Marag – a quintessential lamb soup which was quite rich, creamy and flavorful. The addition of saffron, pistachio, cashew nuts and malai made it absolutely rich and sumptuous.
Next up were a whole range of appetizers of which Lukhmi was the first of the lot. Lukhmi – a local variation of samosa is stuffed with minced meat and this worked as the perfect snacker. Shikampuri kebab that followed next was absolutely delectable. The tender mince of mutton just melts in the mouth and was totally drool worthy just that I would’ve loved it to have a little more stuffing of the hung curd and onions at the center.
The cream, cheese and spice marinated Murgh Malai Kebab was good in its own league, while the Chicken 65 that followed next was something like I’ve never had before. Unlike the corn flour & artificially color flaunted variation that you’d get everywhere, this one was a simple take with simple marination. I loved how Zaqia interpreted this here!
If biryani is the staple of a hyderabadi, then Haleem is like the cousin who visits once a year. The thick, frothy and luscious Haleem is although enjoyed during the season of Ramzan, iam glad Zaiqa has incorporated it in their menu and is now made available throughout the year. The Haleem served here was less oily, medium spicy and laced with rich herbs making it absolutely delicious.
Dum ka Murgh and the Asaf Jahi Gosht Korma that followed were good in their own different league that paired well with Anda Ka Naan. Special mention about the Asaf Jahi Gosht – a traditional Nizami dish of Lamb & Potatoes that makes its debut in a commercial space. Then there was Nizami Handi, Lagan ka Murgh, Keema Matar that complimented the other breads on offer. The simple yet filling dish of dal tadka tempered with cumins and chillies reminds you of the long forgotton authentic way of making a tadka.
Next up were Kacchi Yakhni Biryani, Chicken Dum Biryani and Subz Biryani of which I tried only the Kacchi Yakhni Biryani. Cooked in the typical dum style, this hyderabadi delicacy was as good as I could’ve wished for. The meat to rice ratio was balanced enough and it’s definitely one of the better biryanis I’ve had.
Qubani ka Meetha, Double Ka Meetha, Badam Ka Kund & Gajar Ka Rishta were the desserts on offer. Although each of them were good in their own league, Badam Ka Kund & Gajar Ka Rishta was my personal favorite.
Zaiqa E Hyderabad also wins the brownie points with its minimalistic ambiance that captures the essence of Hyderabad beautifully. The vintage car replica and the lampshades, the huge Charminar graffiti, an entire wall showcasing the Nizami Heritage all add on to the décor that communicate the contemporary and traditional heartbeat of the city.
With Chef Pradeep khosla and his team at the helm of Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad, it’s a perfect to savor the best of Hyderabad’s culinary treats.
Thumbs up for this one.
Disclaimer: I was invited by the management of Zaiqa-E-Hyderabad to review the new outlet. The opinions expressed are honest and unbiased.