My sister and her husband are the biggest fans of Smokehouse Deli. They love the food, the ambiance and the fact that SHD always has some fun weekend offer on drinks 😉 Every chance they get, they run there for a couple of drinks and grub. I like the place myself, but haven’t exhausted the menu like they have! So this post is dedicated to them – they’ll be happy to know that Smokehouse Deli has launched a new menu. If my change-averse sister is reading this – relax … they still retain some of the old favorites.
The ambiance at SDH makes me feel like I’m in a Vintage Doll House. The white walls and beautiful hand drawings always make the place feel light, cheery and welcome. I’ve always fancied the place a little more during daytime, so I was thrilled that we were doing lunch. A motley crew (eleven of us plus two kids) were greeted by the most beautiful table set up, for an afternoon of sheer gluttony. The Bread Basket and amazing Four Cheese Platter kept us company, as we gave the menu a once over. Trying everything was clearly the way to go, but even food bloggers don’t have an Iron Gut! So we decided to split things family style and the Chef and his efficient team kept the courses coming.
There’s never been a Margarita, I haven’t liked – so the Orange and Pineapple one was right up my alley. Strong citrus notes, salted rim and a skewer of a pineapple to boot, this one was a perfect start to the meal. The Whiskey lovers leaned towards the Jimi’s Mojito and concluded that this was the only way that mojito’s needed to be made in the future. (They are a wacky bunch, but after a look at their faces… I might need to attest to their credibility). The cocktails went well with the deep fried beginnings to the day – Vegetable and Black Olive Croquetas and the Prawn Fritters with the Mustard Aioli. Deep fried snacks have a qualities that makes them bullet proof to criticism! So discounting their inherent goodness, I have to say that they were truly enjoyable. Especially the Prawn Fritters which had hints of Thai spices and tiny diced peppers peering through the batter.
The Cheesy Chicken Triangles were the pot-pie version of the humble samosa. The kids seemed to love it and I think it was because of the cheese and mild spices. They do give a robust BBQ sauce that you can dunk the parcels in, but I think it’s an overpowering combo. The Beef Sticks had no such complaints and the gorgeous BBQ sauce clung to the grilled meat. This went especially well with the bold Pomegranate and Thyme Martini. The sweet pomegranate was beautifully balanced with the fragrant, pungent thyme. A clear winner for me.
SHD has always done a brilliant job with their Salads, so I wasn’t too surprised that they nailed the Pear Salad. The Mango Chilli Emulsion dressing with the Flax seeds were a special touch and we all loved the combination. The Soups however, were the surprise package. The Minestrone stole a couple of hearts that afternoon. The Italian stew was packed with tomatoes, zucchini and root vegetables and the perfectly cooked barley just warmed the cockles of our heart! The High Street Chicken and Noodle Soup was so flavorful that I was convinced there was bacon in the broth. After double checking with the chef however, I had to concede defeat. Who knew the chicken could hold fort so well?!
We tried two interesting Sandwiches with an equally interesting Cocktail. The Kiwi, Cantaloupe Melon, Jasmine and Vodka cocktail was definitely a mouthful. A tad too sweet and pulpy for me – I would order this if I wanted to make a meal of my drink! The Red wine poached Pear and Arugula Sandwich is definitely for the adventurous eater. While I liked the slightly-sweet-cinnamon tasting soft pear segments with fresh mozzarella, many concluded that it felt too dessert like. The Popcorn Shrimps Sandwich with Chipotle Mayo was a KFC version of your Deli Sandwich, wholly satisfying without the fast food chain guilt.
For people who much prefer a Burger to a Sandwich, SHD has something new in this department as well. A pulled meat burger is always popular and SHD has done a Pulled Roast Chicken version of it. With Béarnaise sauce and a double cheddar melt, it is a complete whopper! The Southwest style Burger has a nice juicy beef patty topped with green beans, onions and chillies. And finally to establish supremacy in the Burger world, you have the Benedictor – a fat tenderloin patty, fried egg, hollandaise sauce and a slice of ham. Say yum!
What’s a pasta menu without some rich Ravioli? The Lamb parcels with mint in a Butter Sauce was just that – decadent. The Cappellini with Chilli, Garlic and Mixed Seafood is as sublime as it sounds and I pretty much devoured this by myself. To hell with being nice and sharing, especially when you have pink prawns, mussels and juicy calamari begging to be eaten. And finally, if you thought Risottos were boring, you haven’t tried the Oak smoked Bacon and Mint Risotto. If there ever was a loud party in your mouth – rest assured this started it!
The mains were beautifully plated and executed. Without a moment’s hesitation everyone lunged for the Pork, but after tasting the other meats we had to conclude that ordering any of these would keep the diner happy!
Coriander crusted Basa with a Tomato Veloute served with Saffron Coconut Rice. A goan-portugese twist if you must!
The Chicken Schnitzel with Caper Sauce was a delight to look at. The schnitzel was layered with mozzarella and crafted into roundels. Grilled Mediterranean vegetables drizzled with balsamic reduction and caper sauce completed the medley.
Grilled Steak with creamed Mushrooms and Pepper Sauce sounds innocent enough but had everyone raving about how perfectly cooked the beef was. And the baby potatoes kinda stole the show from the creamed mushrooms. Little spuds have some talent!
Yes, yes, I saved the best for last. This was the Slow Cooked Brazilian Pork Belly. A true ode to the power of caramelizing something! The square of pork was just divine and coupled with the grilled apples with Kimchi it had some additional attitude to throw.
What does a person do when confronted with so many good things? You just thank you stars and dive right in! Chocolate based desserts are the most popular, so I imagine the Bitter Chocolate and Hazelnut Feuilletine will do well. Some dark chocolate snobs at the table thought the chocolate was not bitter enough and in sharp contrast, the Warm Apple cake with the Vanilla Cardamom Sauce was definitely hitting the sweet notes too hard, but that’s again a matter of taste. Dessert in a mason jar made a comeback with the Baked Yoghurt with Orange Segments, bearing a strong resemblance to Mishti Doi. The classic Lemon Tart was supplemented with Toffee Sauce to balance the tartness, but again, no great invention here.
My favourite dessert of the evening (and possibly a version of it that I’ve missed since Herbs and Spices shut down) was the Oat and Caramel Tart. It honestly looks like they had a failure with a soufflé tart, but one bite of it and you don’t really care how this baby looks. The taste is all that matters – rich, buttery, crumbly tart base with an even richer caramel filling. The dollop of fresh cream is all that it needed to complete me it!
SHD never fails to impress – a perfect place for a large group of friends or family to enjoy a fantastic meal, in a casual setting. The service is attentive and friendly and echoes the easy vibe of the deli. This is one place that encourages you to bring the kids along as well. SHD offers a specially crafted menu with a fun interactive playbook/ menu that keeps most kids fully engaged during the meal. So for an easy, breezy, delicious day out – Smokehouse Deli is a no brainer!
1209, Opposite Staples,
100ft Road, Indiranagar, Bangalore 560038.
Ph: +91 80 2520 0899
Parking: Valet Available || Cost: Rs. 1800/++ for a meal for two with drinks