True Blue represents the improving food scene in East Delhi, says Rahul Verma
South Delhi is bursting at the seams with lounge bars, but East Delhi...has been strangely shy about anything as adult as a bar licence When I was a small child, a family friend once got me from Moscow a set of Matryoshkha - those Russian dolls within dolls. I remember how it put me in a quandary. I wanted something from Russia, but was hoping for a soldier or a tank. And I didn't quite know what to do with the dolls. I was reminded of this some days ago when I heard that a lounge bar had opened up across the river. All my life, I have been hoping to see a surge in the food scene on the East Bank. But I wasn't quite sure how I felt when this swanky new place opened up at the Atlanta Market Plaza in Indraprastha Extension.
It's called True Blue, and has aptly been done up with blue neon lights. Banners had been put up before True Blue opened up, and flyers were sent across. I was intrigued to see that they had a bar license, and a long food menu. It promised free home delivery and I wondered if that included delivery of liquor as well (imagine, calling up with your order: one plate shami kababs and two small rums, please. Pack kar dena).But then I decided I had to visit this place. Anything so enterprising on this side of town (where eating out usually means a Chinese van) needed to be boosted. South Delhi is bursting at the seams with lounge bars, but East Delhi, even though it has Noida's sector 18 on one side, has been strangely shy about anything as adult as a bar licence. So last week, I went up to True Blue. Actually, I was quite impressed by it. The place is really brimming with life. It's a three-storey affair, with a reception at the ground floor. The first floor has the restaurant, the second floor a bar and a lounge, and the third floor is for private parties. The decor is interesting - all adding to the impression of a hip young place. I liked it. This must be one of the cheapest bar-cum-restaurants in town. Beer is for Rs.60. A full tandoor chicken comes for Rs.160. You can have your rahra gosht (Rs.125) or bhuna ghosht (Rs.130). Aloo Kashmiri is for Rs.75 and malai kofta for Rs.90. There were lots of young people hanging around. The bar was full of men, but the restaurant was what is referred to as a family place. There was quite a crowd there, too, considering I went there on a weekend. I don't think I am ambivalent about the place any more - I want it to do well. But if anybody is interested in what I did with the Russian dolls, I might as well tell you the story. I buried them somewhere - and forgot the site. I dug everywhere the next day, but just couldn't find them.