Restaurant Review:
Junoon

Shangri-La Hotel,
Sheikh Zayed Road,  Dubai

With Ramadan just around the corner, we are throwing back to last year’s Iftar tasting session that we indulged in at Chef Vikas Khanna’s renowned restaurant, Junoon. When you're invited to a reputed Michelin starred restaurant such as this one for Iftar, you had better diet prior to the event because you sure are in for a feast! We were treated to a resplendent 5 course Iftar menu at Michelin starred chef Vikas Khanna's classy restaurant. The first course, pre-appetizers you can call them were the perfect way to start the meal; we got a platter of delicious dates along with a refreshing Compressed Watermelon chaat and glasses each of both buttermilk and Sharbat (RoohAfza and Milk)! The Rose milk was good but the buttermilk could have been thicker in our opinion.

Appetizers

Here we were served a trio of platters; one with assorted vegetable pakodas and pear chutney, the extremely flavorful and crispy Eggplant chaat with the right dips and spices and the sweet potato bonda which was as tasty as it was cute. Our favorite from this selection was definitely the Eggplant chaat!

It was then time for the third course which consisted of the Rajma ki shammi (Kidney beans in tikka/kebab form), I am very fond of Rajma and prefer it in the traditional form as opposed to this way but it was the novelty that attracted! We did quite love the Murgh Tikka Mirza Hasnu and the Goat Seekh kebab; as big fans of North Indian kebabs and mutton as well, both items satisfied our palates and were excellently cooked with perfect accompaniments in the form of a broccoli puree with the former and daal and pomegranate chutney with the latter.

  

Main Courses

Oh boy, there was so much to devour and we managed to get through all of it - it's good that there was a good mix of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes so there's definitely something for everyone. The vegetarians can feast on the Gobi sukhi sabzee and Black daal while the rest can indulge in the Home style fish curry (a must have), Murgh Korma (tasty but quite basic), Haleem (loved this since childhood and the Haleem at Junoon didn't disappoint) and chicken biryani. You also get a variety of Indian breads (Naan & roti, whole-wheat options included for the healthy ones) or basmati rice.



  













Desserts

There's always room for dessert and Junoon had us totally spoilt for choice by presenting three great looking desserts; a selection of Kulfis - The more traditional Cardamom, the unique Pink Guava and the Curry Leaf Kulfi. We enjoyed the former two but the Curry Leaf option was a big Nay for us, that is perhaps an acquired taste. The other dessert was the Mango sago pudding with meringue (we the people from the Asian subcontinent can't resist mango) and this one was fruity, tasty but would appeal more to those who enjoy fruit based desserts. The dessert that excited me the most, both for how spellbinding it sounded and how photogenic it appeared, was the Falooda with an edible chocolate pot filled with Rose Rabdi on an almond sorbet block. So, this was appetizing but not what I expected, I liked the chocolate pot but the Rose Rabdi wasn't exactly Rabdi and had more of Rose milk texture and taste, completely unlike the traditional Rabdi. In addition I feel like the almond sorbet should have been replaced by our beloved Kulfi for a more enhanced flavor. Regardless, the desserts were the perfect way to round off the meal. Decor, service and ambiance are top notch. The only thing you have to worry about is how much time you'd need to spend at the gym in order to burn them Michelin starred calories!