Papaya is the latest offering in Delhi by Massive Restaurants Pvt. Ltd. This chain of restaurants is spearheaded by Zorawar Kalra who became a household name after becoming a judge on MasterChef India Season 5. He is also commonly referred as Prince of Indian Cuisine who has aspirations of setting new benchmarks for Indian cuisine globally.
Papaya is a modern Asian bistro with first of its branch already a big hit in Mumbai. The restaurant at Select Citywalk, Saket, New Delhi is the second one. It is extremely easy to reach this bistro considering this mall is one of the most happening places of Delhi.
I will give its location a 5/5 rating.
True to the name of its parent brand Papaya – the modern Asian bistro in Saket, New Delhi is ‘massive’ in size. Its interiors have been done to give it a circular appearance. There is an elongated exclusive balcony which also has a seating area. From the balcony, one can have a panoramic view of front area of all the three closely packed malls namely Select Citywalk, DLF Place, MGF Metropolitan.
The inner portion of the restaurant has three level of seating areas. The outermost have couches which are separated by a pseudo-partition for each table. Next to this level is the high rise area where there is plush chair & table combo. The innermost core area of the circularly designed restaurant flaunts an elaborate bar near which bar chairs are placed.
Noteworthy is the open kitchen at Papaya, however, there is zero trace of oil, smoke, or smell that comes on to the dine-in areas.
I will give its ambiance a 5/5 rating.
Each table has a dedicated wait staff which on your arrival would ask about your food preferences and any sort of food allergies. The food comes o to the table at a medium to fast pace. The wait staff are well trained and have good knowledge of all dishes. They are friendly and dedicated to serving the guests in the best possible manner. However, a minor thing, if I could point out, was that the person serving us had an accent problem because of which it was difficult to understand what he was saying to us. At restaurants like Papaya, New Delhi, it is especially important for the guests to understand what they are eating so as to appreciate the food even better.
I will give its Service a 5/5 rating.
In terms of food, Papaya restaurant in New Delhi seems to be a fashion show of a noted fashion designer who is out to flaunt his specialty works in some top fashion weeks like AIFW or LFW. Each of the dishes that come in seems to enthrall you on the first sight itself. There is extensive use of beautiful sea shells for serving food & use of molecular gastronomy like a magic wand for enhancing the beauty of food.
The flavors of Asian dishes clearly speak for themselves and the cuisine they represent. A unique palate cleanser foam is all it takes to be gulped for a fresh, neutral palate after you are satiated with seafood & Sushis.
As we were a bunch of friends visiting te place for food tasting we ordered dishes across the menu for a true Papaya experience. The dishes we tasted were:
Prawn Har Gao Dimsums a Chinese kind of dim sums were really good with a very subtle flavor of diced prawns in there. The upper layer was thin and almost transparent.
Tuna Tataki Pizza is a tuna pizza with a thin layer of Tuna placed all over the thin pizza base and then the spices added. Honestly, it was one of the first fish and that too Tuna pizza that I have ever had. I liked the pizza more so because it was not really smelling fishy yet tasted as tuna. The thin pizza crust added the much-needed crunch.
I loved Asia Margarita Pizza Pizza as a contrast to my other friends simply because it had lots of Parmesan cheese on top of it and gosh I love Cheese! The base was really thin and the filling had mushrooms. But yes the star of this dish was Parmigiano!
Hoison Hot Duck Slider: This slider was unique as it had small chunks of roasted duck in it. Even a small portion tends to be filling in such kind of sliders. Decorated with edible flowers and accompanied with onion rings and salad it is a dish that is a must have for duck lovers!
Non-vegetarian Sushi Tree: The Sushi tree at Papaya was an eye candy, not only this each bite is filled with moments of ecstasy for people who love seafood especially Sushi. The best part of it was that wasabi wasn’t that hard hitting. Personally, I liked the Black rice Sushis. It had fried fish eggs for adding the crunchiness and diced prawns inside.
For the mains we had:
Lamb Rendang Curry with Paratha: This was the only Indian style dish that we had during the three-course meal at Papaya, New Delhi. But oh boy what a dish this was! A long leg piece which had a perfectly tenderized meat so much so that we could take the meat on to our plates using a fork. The Rendang curry which is basically Indonesian but the flavors were very very similar to Indian meat curry. The spices had well got into the meat as well.
Singapore Chilli Crab with Sweet & Salty subtly flavored Bun: The entire crab perfectly fried and then the Singapore style chili sauce which went on to the top of crab finally immersing it was spicy yet tangy. The bun pleasantly reminded me of sheermal in terms of taste.
Talking about desserts my wish of having a Masterchef kind of dessert platter with a variety of thoughtful additions got quenched at Papaya, New Delhi. Vanilla Panacotta was served with a pastry on one side, beetroot sorbet dome, crumb for adding crunchiness and an instant ice cream made on the spot using dry ice. The pannacotta was not overly sweet which I loved about it. It was creamy and bet I can finish one all by my own! There was another dessert which had dark chocolate brownies with cream, berries, chocolate chunks and Japanese green tea called Macha.
The cocktails we tried were Bito-No-Ne-Chado which was a vodka-based beetroot cocktail served with sun-dried orange slices. I felt it be a bit higher on the sweetness quo though my friends like it.
The Kuro which was a tequila and coffee based cocktail was very nice. Overall the cocktails were good but could have been mixed better.
I will give its food a 5/5 rating.
While I will rate the cocktails here a 4.5/5.
With the price point that’s Rs. 2000 for two (as mentioned on Zomato) Papaya, Select Citywalk, Saket, New Delhi fares with a perfect 5/5 score. It has a mix of luxury ambiance, open kitchen & bar, and flavorsome pan-Asian food. If you are a Sushi lover you got to taste the Sushi Tree here. However, the Indian food too is equally Chumeshwari!
A must visit place in Delhi if you are a pan-Asian (including Indian) cuisine, lover. Most definitely the brand new bistro from the house of Massive Hospitality called ‘Papaya’ needs to be a lauded by a double tap of the spoon for the commendable world class food experience!