Latitude, Mosaic Hotel, Sector 18, NOIDA
NOIDA is improving folks. I’m not sure why, but the quality and variety of food available in the city is definitely heading north. Latitude, one of the older restaurants in the city and probably one of it’s better ones, is back in a brand new avatar. I last visited Latitude a few years back, when it was multi-cuisine and was one of the few places in the city that served pork chops among other dishes that weren’t easily found in NOIDA. Dropping in a couple of weeks back, I found the restaurant had re-invented itself into a mostly north Indian one, with a change in decor possibly heralding a change in focus and cuisine.
The Pudina Paneer Tikka at Latitude was predictably soft, well flavored and suitably redolent of mint, generations upon generations of cooks having perfected it, slaving over hot tandoors; quite similar to their Murgh ki Chaamp, yet another name for the perennial favorite, Tandoori Chicken, which too has had the advantage of constant practice and subsequent perfection at most places one would care to order it at.
Where Latitude stumbled was in the details. Their Tawa Murgh Kaali Mirch, was neither spicy as described in the menu nor did the chicken appear to be cooked on a tawa, as claimed in the menu, missing the characteristic scorch marks that is natural with tawa cooking. Ignoring the description and name, this was a nice dish, with tender chicken in a creamy, well seasoned gravy with a hint of black pepper. Kundan Kaliya, a fairly iconic dish suffered a little too, with the kitchen appearing to have veered away from the classic recipe and recommended shapes for the meat. Ignore the details, and we have quite a delicious dish with tender pieces of mutton in creamy, meaty gravy.
I can’t leave this article without mentioning one dish – Wadiyan ka Pulao. I hate wadis with a vengeance. Can’t stand the look, feel, aroma, taste or texture and have rabidly avoided this ingredient for the last 25 odd years, fishing it out of dals, sabzis and any other dish it had to temerity to appear in. On hearing this, Chef Diwas Wadhera promised me I would like his rendition… and I did! Subtle, soft yet sufficient firm wadis that complimented the rice perfectly. I loved his version to bits and will probably order it again, for the first time in my life, when I return to Latitude. Thank you Diwas!
Latitude appears to have a talented team backing it’s efforts though it mustn’t fall into the trap of making it’s menu too ambitious. It remains one of the better restaurants in NOIDA and I suggest you visit Latitude every time you feel like a classic, full fledged, north Indian meal. Just don’t pay too much heed to the menu descriptions.