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9 July, 2015 00:00 00 AM
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Restaurants and Iftar Delicacies in Dhaka

Restaurants and Iftar Delicacies 
in Dhaka

Shaba Binte Amin

Like in every other year, in this Ramzan, all the restaurants in Dhaka are ready to welcome you with their large array of Iftar items and Sehri packages, all comprised of luscious food items from both local and foreign cuisines. Going out and having new and exotic food for Iftar and Sehri is the newest trend in this city and the restaurants are all geared up to best serve their guests. People are enjoying the fine dining experience and for some, the best part is the outing or the relief from preparing meals after a tiring day.  
People are looking beyond the delicious Old Dhaka cuisines to try something new and the key factor responsible for this change is the revolution that has taken place in the restaurant scene of Dhaka over the recent years. Everywhere in this mega city, you will find restaurants featuring foreign and exotic cuisines as well as boasting their own specialties. On the other hand, the traditional Bengali and Mughal cuisines aren’t neglected rather those delicacies are highlighted and celebrated on a bigger level. Mexican, Indian, Turkish, Chinese, Korean- delicacies from almost every well known cuisines are available with authentic flavors.
The restaurants have managed to ensure the most effective use of the internet and latest technologies to provide easy access to information such as operation hours and digital menu cards etc. Food lovers can easily pick the place they want to visit considering their choice of cuisine and the invaluable customer reviews. The online delivery services like Foodpanda and Hungrynaki have pulled off a miracle. Thanks to them, someone living in Dhanmondi can get food from a restaurant in Uttara without facing all the traffic and hassle right in time on their table. Iftar or Sehri, you can order from any restaurant that’s open and get your food with just a simple online purchase or a phone call. All these newly introduced facilities have made ‘eating out’ a more sensible and attractive choice.   
The interior décor is another major factor that lures the customers to these restaurants not only to eat but enjoy a casual or family hours in a nice environment that matches their sophisticated taste as well. These restaurants are decorated based upon a unique theme with a classy touch to stay distinguished and make a mark. You will find restaurants with interior decors focusing on light, dark or any certain colors or using on themes based on different places and times, eco-friendliness or even bizarre choices such as automobile based themes.
All these places are in the market with all kinds of special and alluring packages and deals offering fine dining experience with all the bells and whistles. It does not need telling that the people are embracing this new phenomena and the business is booming. In a nutshell, the restaurant scenario of Dhaka is flourishing and is headed in the right direction, rapidly.
There are a whole lot of choices and sometimes it gets confusing to have a pick. All these items and packages, also, there’s the issue of an ideal venue and don’t get me started on the cost. One must be aware of the dos and don’ts at this time. The Iftar reviews on the following restaurants should help you pick a suitable option and avoid any unfortunate occurrence ensuring a refreshing Iftar experience. This week Y&I looks into some of the Iftar menus and venues available in Dhaka during this Ramzan.  

•    D loiter 85 (Banani): Iftar from the ‘D loiter 85’ at Banani is a very smart choice. Their Iftar menu offers a wide variety covering from dates, fruits to French fries, chicken lolly pops, chicken brochette with fresh grilled vegetables, coleslaw, fried rice, chicken wing. The chicken brochette is one of the crowd pleasers. The chicken is really well cooked. The spices are spread evenly in the meat during the marinating process. The texture is moist and brings out a tender vibe. It goes great with freshly grilled veggies. Another dish that stands out is the chicken lolly pop. It is really juicy and tastes awesome. The meat is cooked to perfection. There’s something for everyone to enjoy. Fancy interior design. The environment is great. Good customer service. Nice place to have a lovely Iftar with friends.

•    Meat Lovers (Bashundhara): If you want package meals and cost efficiency, go to Meat Lovers at Bashundhara. Their set meals have great items and varieties. One of the packages is comprised of a glass of fresh juice, chicken suslik, burger (chicken/ beef), beef kabab, chicken satay, firni named as sweet cup. The chicken burger is one of their best sellers. The chicken patty is cooked really well. The texture is warm, moist and very soothing. The herbs and spices create a great combination. But the biggest hit is the firni. It offers the perfect amount of sweetness. The consistency, crushed rice and the amount of raisins- everything is up to the highest mark. You are bound to complement on the brilliantly done interior décor and the efficient furniture arrangement. They can handle a big crowd easily due to top notch service. The environment is both casual and family friendly. Great place to have a refreshing Iftar after a long tiring day.

•    Veni Vidi Vici (Uttara): Veni Vidi Vici at Uttara is a great choice if you’re looking for a place with buffet Iftar along with nice dinner arrangements. The highlights of their impressive Iftar buffet menu are pudding, vegetable soup, cream of mushroom, breads, multiple types of salads, multiple types of pizza, vegetable rice and various types of pasta such as penne, spaghetti, and lasagna and then comes grilled chicken, beef steak, chicken lever, chicken suslik, lamb, fish fry and others. Finally, the dessert- cheesecake, lemon cake, red velvet marble cake, and fresh juice. Before the buffet, you’ll be served with a few common regular Iftar items to get you started for the grand meal. The best items were the pasta variants specially, the penne and lasagna, 2 types of pizzas, fish fry, vegetable rice, chicken lever and finally, the beef steak- a must have. The best dessert item is the pudding. It is really soft and the texture was perfectly moist. It has the perfect sweetness, an absolute delight. Their service is known to be quite quick and helpful. The interior is tastefully done. It’s a great place to throw Iftar parties. For family gatherings, it is an ideal spot. The environment is quite casual and you can sit back and relax after a heavy Iftar.  

•    George’s Cafe (Uttara): George’s Café located at Uttara is popular choice among the young and fast food lovers. They have great choices for Iftar menu along with set menus. The biggest hits over there are- quarter mint chicken, chicken suslik, beef mini burger (Saucy Delight), BBQ Wrap (Half), Buffalo Wings (2 Pieces), Red Velvet Cupcake, Chocolate Coated Dates (2 Pieces), Arnold Palmer, Green Papaya Salad and Potato Salad. It is more than enough for 2 persons. All the items taste exceedingly good. The highlights are the beef mini burger (Saucy Delight) and the Buffalo wings. The burger patty is cooked with care making sure that the spices and the herbs are integrated into the meat evenly. The Buffalo wings are crispy, big in size and tastes great. The red velvet cupcakes are one of the best in town. The chocolate coated dates are something you don’t come across every day. George’s Café is not very big in size but it can hold a decent crowd, sit them easily and provide good service thanks to its clever management system. The interior is sophisticated and modern. Service is prompt and more than satisfactory. It’s the perfect place to have casual meals and have a relaxing hangout. It is one of the best places to have good quality Iftar.

•    Cilantro (Dhanmondi): One of the best restaurants in Dhanmondi, Cilantro is an excellent place to have Iftar any day. Cilantro is one of the hottest places in the city and they arguably offers  the best platter in the city. It is worth every penny and totally covers cost efficiency. For drinks, you can choose either a pitcher of Lemonade or Iced Lemon Tea. Both are excellent refreshers. The consistency of the fluid is excellent. For starter, you can have dates, jilapi, chola and beguni. All these are traditional items and they managed to execute the dishes perfectly and harness the homely traditional essence of these dishes. It is actually a great change with all the foreign and exotic cuisines and fast food dominated culture around. After that, the main course features Peruvian Chicken, Grilled Sirloin Steak, Grilled Chicken Skewers, Batter Fried Fish Fillet, Sautéed Vegetables, Herb Rice, Spanish Rice. All these items come with the authentic flavors. The biggest highlight is the Peruvian Chicken. This dish is hard to get exactly right but their execution is almost flawless. The steak is also impressive. The meat comes with the perfect medium rare cook and the pink color paired with the intoxicating smell is simply mind blowing. Finally, the dessert items include Creme Caramel and Shahi Tukra. Both items are culinary excellence but the Shahi Tukra is the bigger attraction, they said. The bread is dipped into the milk in a timely manner. The consistency of the milk is achieved with much precision and the aroma that comes out is simply mouth watering. Cilantro boasts a very classy interior. It is a tight ship and is run very efficiently. The service is quick and excellent. You’ll find the environment very nice and casual. It is the perfect place for Iftar in Dhanmondi.  

•    Richmond Hotel & Suites (Uttara): One of the best restaurants to have delicious Iftar in Uttara is the Richmond Hotel & Suites. Their Iftar buffet menu is something to brag about. Lots of traditional and uncommon items covering multiple cuisines. What one will love about their menu is the abundance of traditional Iftar items we get to see in our homemade Iftar menus. They have dates, pyaju, jilapi, veggie pakora, halim, mutton chop, chicken chop, aloo chop, egg chop, chicken lolli pop and khichuri. The menu also features rice, fried rice, polao, chicken curry, chili chicken, chicken corn soup, veggie soup, mutton curry, chili beef, chow mein etc. The top dessert item is the pudding. It is really soft and smooth. It will melt in your mouth right away. The best thing about Iftar buffet is that you can get done with both Iftar and dinner at once. The Richmond boasts a great roof top ambience. You can see half of Uttara from there. It is the premium spot in Uttara and Iftar in such environment after a tiring day is worth every penny.

•    Choi Jhal (Bashundhara): Choi Jhal is a well known restaurant in Bashundhara for its specialty, the Choi Jhal is also known as Choi or Chui integrated meat dishes. They are offering their signature dishes for Iftar for the serious and spicy food lover segment. Choi Jhal is a unique spice exclusively from the Khulna region famous for its pungent and spicy flavor. Any meat, particularly beef and mutton,  taste incredible with the touch of Choi. Both dishes are out of this world and the perfect finishing comes with the ‘Gurer Firni’. With the perfectly crushed rice powder and the delicate balance of sweetness, the Firni is absolute goodness. The place has a simple and informal look to ease the guests into a casual and relaxed state. A must try restaurant indeed.
•    Mezban Bari (Bashundhara): People looking to have a taste of the infamous Mezban Gosh, the rich tradition and delicacy of Chittagong can turn to Mezban Bari. They have executed the beef dish and achieved a near perfect result offering juicy and tender meat with a mind blowing aroma. Another treat was Akni, a Kacchi Biriyani like dish with buffalo meat. Good food, great environment.

•    Chewy Junior (Gulshan 1):  Chewy Junior is the newest premium bakery and fast food shop offering the best of sweetness and richness. Their iconic Cuva cakes, a combination of lava cakes and cup cakes are the in short, innovative, smart and sweet delight. Praline Deluxe, Strawberry Ruby and Oreo World are their best sellers. Praline features the beautiful blend of rich cheesy white cream and cocoa on top of a lava cake. Strawberry Ruby is a treat for the eyes with rich cheese cream and a red jewel on top. The lava cake with cream and an Oreo on top is the biggest earner of the house. Chewy Junior is an international chain shop introducing us to the finest baking experience and it’s worth a visit. The premium shop offers the premium service. Great venue to have an Iftar get together with friends and family.    

This is the overview of what you might face if you’re intending to eat outside. There are a great many choices available. You’ll hardly go wrong. Eat healthy, stay healthy. 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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