Ayna - Hyderabadi Food Promotion, Hilton, Guindy

I loved my previous visit to Ayna. So when I recieved an invite to Blog about the Hyderabadi Food Festival which is on upto 10 November at Ayna, I had no second thoughts. The restaurant had wooed me, with amazing ambiance and fine attention to detail and how could I miss out on the spectacular Indian food.
On my previous visit I was awe struck with the number of mirrors in the restaurant. This time around I examined the finer things. The thing which stood out, was the petal formation by light translumination through the glasses in which we were served with water. A very unique touch.

Since Deepa, Kartick Ganapathi and myself were the first set of people to arrive, we started nimbiling on the variety of papads kept on the table while we waited for the rest. I started my work of mixing stuff. I found the combo of the papad and onions bathed in vinegar great. Do try this if you are waiting for company.

At this juncture we were served with the welcome drink named Serbet -e- Shahi. I was hoping it to be a Gulkand Mojito, but this was one better. The drink was a mixture of almonds, cashewnuts, dates and gulkand with a dose of crushed ice. The drink was superb, but if you decide to drink it slowly, it is better that you ask for the drink without the ice in it. Since the ice melts and dilutes the drink.

The first dish to be served to us was the Dahi - ki - Kebab. The dish was made of yoghurt, cashews chili and to bring a slight twist a dash of chaat masala. It was simply mezmerizing!! I just could not believe that I was blown away by a vegetarian dish. 

Next we were served with Lal Mirch ka Jingha. It was a de-shelled prawn, with a little bit of shell present in the tail portion. The prawn had a good marinade of garlic and red chili flakes and cooked to perfection.

Next we were served with Hyderabadi Murgh Tikki. The chicken was really tender and the assortment of spices and herbs imparted a nice taste to it.

Then came the blow away Sami Kebab. Soft mutton texture, just delicious. After that we had Hyderabadi Mirchi Pakoda and Ambara Paneer Tikka which were good.

Finally came the amazing Goluti Kebab which was served with a small parotta. It would have been better, if it was served with a bigger parotta. Nevertheless this is the best Goluti I have ever had.

We took a small breather after the starters. For main course we were served with Hyderabadi Kache Gosht Biryani and an assortment of rotis. The biryani though not very authentic, tasted good. Also the mutton pieces were a little raw. We were served with a variety of roti such as Lal Mirchi paratha which was a paratha with drizzle of red chili flakes. But the chili flakes imparted only the flavor and not the heat. The other variety of paratha which I liked was Bhkarkhani. This was a paratha was made of soft dough and a nice helping of pista on it. A very royal dish!! As sides we served with Ambara Murgh which was not great in my opinion. Also a Dalcha Gosht was served. This was your very familiar Dal Makani instead it had a overload of Mutton in it. It reminded me of the Thalsa which is served in my Dad's native village along with the Biryani. Did try some of the vegetarian gravies, but somehow felt they could not match the taste of the non-veg. Overall the main course felt a notch below after the delicious starters.

After the delicious course of main course, the chef taunted us with  large portions of deserts. We were so full that we asked him to serve us a sampler for the deserts. We were served with small portions Khubani ka Meetha and Shahi Tukra. The Khubani ka Meetha was stewed apricots served with cream. I felt that it was a little too sweet for my liking. I loved the taste of Shahi Tukra, it was crisp and yummy.

It would be an understatement to tell that the food was brilliant. The food here is fit for the royalty: the Kings and Queens and The Nizams. Hats off to the Chef Vijay for blowing us away with the assortment of great dishes. Also a word of mention about the chef, who was with us all through the meal, explaining to us the ingredients which go into making the dish and taking our valuable feedback on all the dishes. Overall the food felt a little toned down to suit the foreign cliental staying at the hotel.

My advice to you would be to go big guns on the starters and have little of the main course and end with the fabulous deserts of your choice. 

I had raved about the ambiance on previous visit, and this place still holds on to the same top quality ambiance. If you are on the lookout fine dining Indian restaurant, look no further. 

A meal for two would cost you around Rs 2500/- and upwards, but it is well worth the money you spend.

Food - 8.5/10
Ambiance - 9.5/10
Price - 8/10

Ayna is open only for dinner. So please do make reservations before you head over here.

Hitlon is located next to Olympia Tech Park in Guindy

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.


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