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On our most recent trip to India we really jumped in head first to the beauty and diversity of the cuisine. We’ve learned to negotiate some of the spice, to really indulge in the vegetarian cuisine and savor the abundant flavors. Bukhara was one of our most exotic experiences yet, but set in a very approachable environment.
This restaurant has been open for decades and it is housed in the lovely ITC Grand Mayura which is in the diplomatic section of Delhi. The hotel is an elaborate palace and the restaurant is themed in the Tandoor style. We soon discovered that this is kind of what Tex-Mex is in the U.S. India’s border with Afghanistan in the Northwest has led to a cross over of foods and spices which are very distinctive to that part of the world.
Bukhara is actually a quite affordable restaurant considering its locale and pedigree. It has been visited by celebrities and statesmen alike and even though it was full we were able to get a reservation. It is best to call ahead to see if this is possible.
The meals are eaten with hands and so there is no cutlery around unless you specifically ask for it. The traditional dishes are more like dipping sauces of various types of spiciness and lovely Naan bread is provided to help consume it. We found our waiters very attentive in spite of the crowd and found that the portions are really made for sharing. The slow cooked lentils were hands down the best we’ve every had, do get them!
What is unique about the environment is that is has a traditional decor to it but also a completely open kitchen behind a glass wall. It is impressive to see the chefs at work and to see how busy they are. Sometimes a themed or even popular restaurant can border on cheesy but not Bukhara. It delivers an exceptional foodie experience that is uniquely Tandoor and up to the standards of fine international cuisine. We definitely recommend it if you are visiting Delhi.