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I often wonder how underrated team outings and the weekend hangouts are!! Nevertheless, needless to say I also think that it deserves my attention enough to have at least one post dedicated to what constitutes ‘mindless weekend hangouts’, in a pro-youth urban dictionary terminology, what one would call ‘chilling’. So yeah, two years of being stationed at Gurgaon and a slightly fatter wallet than during freshmen years, I have countless memories of Cyber Hub, Turquoise Cottage, HKV (for a non-Delhi wallah, that would be Hauz Khas Village), Connaught Place paan-wallah, Ambience Mall eateries, Big Chill, Sector 29 Gurgaon, Galleria, Def Col and many more!! The prudent readers might have guessed by now, what this blog post is going to be about. Rarely do I get the chance to be a food critic, but on my blog, I take this post as an opportunity to be one, and hopefully, this one serves as a next weekend getaway planner for ol’ye folks. ๐Ÿ™‚

@The Pasta Bowl Company

Foodies indulging in@The Wine Company

Of the most memorable outings, the ones I have been to in Cyber Hub stand out. Its not just because of the wonderful company I seem to enjoy (lets make people happy for a change! :P) , but the distinct cuisine and experience that each restaurant has to offer. Each restaurant is fixated in my mind as a memory with a different group of people, a whole different experience, and of course the sumptuous delights each one has to offer. While a place like Nandos may be famous for the hot/feisty treat for chicken lovers, aka the ‘Peri-Peri chicken’, the more rustic ‘The Wine Company’, known for its lavish buffet and a good spread, is every foodaholic’s delight.

The pri(c)zed Red-Velvet Cake!

The Olive Bistro is more urbane and has some meaty Continental delights to offer, but the cutting edge decor, comprising of saucers and pans, with hanging chandeliers adds to the classy look, nothing short of ‘fine-dining’, right out of a Charlotte Brontรซ‘s classic. Oh! Calcutta offers mouth-watering fish curry in mustard sauce, have it with rice, and you are set for the day! California Pizza Kitchen houses freshly made, exclusive pizzas, right out of the oven. Never mind the fact that I ended up paying 350 bucks for a slice of Red Velvet cake that lacked the necessary moisture, and a bill amount of Rs.673/- for 2 slices! :O Almost got robbed. Clearly not a place for desserts.

‘Imperfecto’ on the first floor, is rather imperfect. Right from the mane-quin of a girl upside-down staring at you, each time you take a slice of bread down your throat, to the prices and the quantity. Word of caution : exorbitantly priced for a meager quantity. The best of the lot and a place I wouldn’t mind going to a second time would most definitely be ‘The Soda-Bottle Opener wala’. Right from the dimly-lit bar to the casual seating, not to miss out on the artificial train track with a moving train hovering over the top of your head, the place has a vibrant, cafe-like feel to it. The mouth-drooling delights like Keema Pav, and Irani specialities like the Berry Pulao, are every bit worth your penny.

D’trio @Soda-bottle Opener wala
Gulp it down@Downtown

The more outdoorsy, beer-guzzling, Friday night lovers, can find respite in places like Downtown and Striker. For the party animals, live-band music fans, Striker or Club Rhino or an Escape would do the trick, while those who’d rather enjoy a pint of beer with a palette full of lip-smacking starters, over a light conversation, head towards Downtown or the Hard Rock Cafe!

The loud music, generally marketed as Sufi, but nothing short of Bollywood beats, with a Sufi touch (read Kailash Kher and Atif Aslam numbers on the list, for anyone who forgot what Sufi sounds like.) What an ‘escape’! An exciting place to hang out for dance lovers, all you need is a group and dancing shoes on!

For those who enjoy hogging over long conversations, the best pick would be BBQ nation on an empty stomach! Aaaah… Sheer delight. I recount memories of not only team dinners with U.S. counterparts on clients, visiting office, and relishing food fresh out of the barbecue but also team birthdays, and farewells being celebrated with equal fervour. 

  

 Team Dinner@BBQ Nation
Lazard Team-the then ‘beginners’@Underdoggs

All in all, Gurgaon has a plethora of options to choose from when it comes to food. Whether it be global cuisines – Continental, Mexican, Mediterranean or Italian, or the more local food from the streets of Bombay or Calcutta, it could champion the ‘one size fits all’ campaign, catering to options that satiates every foodaholics appetite ‘and’ platter by far!;) From the numerous eating options in Ambience Mall – Chillies, Sahib Sindh Sultan, Asia Seven, Fresco, Underdoggs Pub & Bar to name a few, to the queue of restaurants  in Cyber Hub, to the fancy food options available in Gallaria Market and Sector 29.

The escapades with the friends I made at my first Company, Deloitte are also worth a mention. The fun times we had in the markets of CP, introducing each one to the carefully picked paan wallah’s icy-cold paan, inserting which in the mouth at one go, a great feat in itself! ๐Ÿ˜€

Deloitte Joinees from June 2012 batch chilling @Khan Market, New Delhi

I could go on about the innumerable experiences relished at the various eating places throughout NCR, in the course of 7 years of my stay there. However, for now, I restrict it to the select few memories that left an indelible mark on my mind, and now graciously shared here. Until then, stay tuned for the next post and hope that you would have made your pick by now for your next weekend getaway!! Well, for now, Happy Friday, and a great weekend ahead. ๐Ÿ™‚