Delhi’s indigenous restaurant chains make me quite proud. Big Chill, Mamagoto, Ritu Dalmia’s Diva chain, Amici and of course the Smokehouse lot all consistently deliver quality food and distinct themes in very presentable settings. All of these have an outpost at Khan and I’ve recommended each of these places to friends and acquaintances numerous times. Smokehouse Deli, in particular, is a perfect fit for Khan Market and the crowds have been flocking in from the day they opened their pretty, painted doors.
Smokehouse Deli has spectacular interiors, Kriti Monga’s much feted hand painted murals are endlessly charming. There are a lot of artist/designer types floating around in this city smoking weed and talking about projects they’re never going to start or forget to complete. All of them need to learn from this very talented young woman who’s doing phenomenal work.
Coming back to Smokehouse Deli, I love the quintessentially Delhi but very current motifs along with couplets and quirky symbols (including the Kamla sign on the ladies room door). A very, very stylish effort that never takes itself too seriously or tries too hard.
The menu at Smokehouse Deli is full up with goodness but my favorites come from their all day breakfast menu. The Skillet Fried Chorizo and House Sausage are as the description would lead us to believe, a no holds barred meat and eggs fest. While nobody really needs more than that, there’s the Smoked Salmon and Philly Omelet which will blow your mind with its pillowy eggs holding in an unfairly lavish quantity of cream cheese and chunks of salty salmon. If you can’t eat breakfast food at all times of the day like I can then you can try their thin crust pizzas which are perfectly portioned for 2 people, I really like the whimsical “Inverted Hawaiian” (Ham, Chicken and Pineapple) and the very indulgent Pepperoni and Bacon. Amongst the pastas, my vote goes to the Boss Style Aglio Olio Pepperoncino Spaghetti with red onions, field mushrooms and your choice of meat. My friends swear by the John Dory with Smoked Shimla Chilli.
A meal at Smokehouse Deli is nicely rounded out. I appreciate the well put together bread basket (which they’ve sweetly replenished for me when I was starving and couldn’t wait for my order to be brought in) and the fact that a cup of coffee comes with a couple of cookies. Small touches like that can really class a place up and it’s heartening to see more and more restaurants in Delhi extending these tiny courtesies towards their patrons.
Smokehouse Deli also has an extensive cocktail menu and while I feel that the bartender is too heavy handed with the sugar syrup, if you can reign him in the Red Wine Sangria and the Smoked Melon Martini are worth trying.
I have it on good authority that Rahul Gandhi has eaten here. I can’t promise RaGa will be there when you visit but you’ll easily find a couple of characters from Delhi’s pantheon of page 3 personalities. The tweezed and manicured mobs tend to swarm here in the evenings so I prefer to go during the day.
The staff is okay but can be slow and snarky.