Jamun, Again (Delhi, January 2023)

We ate at Jamun in Lodhi Colony with good friends on our last family trip in January 2020. We enjoyed most of that meal fine but didn’t think it was anywhere we needed to get back to in a hurry. But we did go there again on this family trip as another set of good friends picked it as ideally situated between them and us, both of us being located at different ends of the vast Delhi NCR (National Capital Region). This time we were there for lunch, and on a Sunday. This meant that the traffic was not nightmarish getting there, and that the restaurant was not very full when we arrived (we were eating on American time). How was the meal? Read on.

For more details on the restaurant and the kind of thing it does (broadly speaking, dishes from different parts of the country, in mostly traditional avatars), see my previous report. In terms of approach, the restaurant has not changed. The menu, however, is not identical to what we’d seen in 2020. What was then the “Winter Specials” menu is now in a section called “Under the Jamun Tree”, and the dishes on it and elsewhere on the menu are not identical either. What did we order from it?

The boys being along this time, we predictably got a few tandoori dishes to start. They scarfed the first order of tandoori jhinga (prawns) down so quickly that we had to get another. The bite I got was very good. The tandoori pomfret was also very good, as were the lamb seekh kababs. We also ordered something called Jamun Chicken 17—their take on Chicken 65. Why 17, I’m not sure: a nod to the year they opened? This was fine. Some naan was deployed with these items.

For the mains we shared the following: Jamun-e-Josh mutton curry, chicken Chettinad, and panchmel dal. I’m not sure if the Jamun-e-Josh is meant to be a take on rogan josh; at any rate, I’m not sure if it jumped out as a particularly Kashmiri prep but as a mutton curry it was quite good. The chicken Chettinad was better still and we liked the dal (a mix of five different lentils) too. We got some appams and Malabar parathas to eat with these dishes.

To end, just a couple of sweet things. One order of the Jamun kulfi. I didn’t get to taste this as the younger boy demolished it very quickly and so I cannot tell you if the name is a nod to black plums (jamun) or to some flavour special to the restaurant. I can tell you that the gulab jamuns were very good, as most gulab jamuns in Delhi are.

For a look at the restaurant and what we ate, click on a pic below to launch a larger slideshow. Scroll down for thoughts on service and to see how much it all cost and what’s coming next.

Ah yes, drinks. They have an extensive cocktails and spirits menu but we kept things non-alcoholic. The missus and the older boy got mocktails, the Jaisalmer Jaun and the Pineapple Express, respectively—and they liked them fine. The younger boy and our friends got Masala Thums Ups and those got the thumbs up as well. And I very much liked my chaach (or spiced buttermilk).

Service was very good—present when needed and not overbearing. Price? Just about Rs. 12,500 with additional tip. That’s about $150. It was enough food for six adults, so about $25/head. That’s without alcohol, of course. Not a cheap meal in Delhi but also not egregiously priced. And though we did like this meal better, on the whole, than the Jan 2020 version, it’s also still not a place that I would recommend as a must-do for the first-time or even occasional Delhi visitor.

Alright, there are still some Delhi reports, and quite a few Goa reports to come from our India trip in January. Those will show up next week. Tomorrow, I will close out the Southern California reports from December. And then the reports from Seoul—where I currently am for another three days—will begin to show up. If you can’t wait for those, you can follow this food thread on Twitter (and maybe even this street scenes thread), and also look on Instagram where I’ve been posting videos.



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