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I admit that after my last meal at the Maurya Sheraton I was a little nervous about another expensive meal there. I’m glad I gave it a chance, though, because Dum Pukht is a very good restaurant.

Interestingly, after chatting with my server, I learned that Dum Pukht averages only 150 covers per night, while Bukhara does 600. So much for the good taste of the glitterati!

There were a couple problems with the meal. My gewurtztraminer was served *far* too cold. And why would such a high-end hotel allow two of its venues to serve, as standard sides, the exact same salad and pappadum?

But the service was excellent–pleasant, informed and detailed. And while the lighting and fixtures may be a touch dated, it’s very comfortable.

I started with a plate of Habibia kebabs that would easily have worked as an entree. These were perfectly tender and served with a delicious heap of onions sauteed with a judicious splash of vinegar.

dum2.jpg I enjoyed this paired with some sweet papaya chutney.

My ‘second dinner’ was Mahi Qualiya, soft fish meatballs (that doesn’t sound poetic enough) in a thin but flavorful sauce. (It didn’t come with the promised lemon-soaked ginger strips.)

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I ate this with one of the best breads I think I may have ever had, a flaky Warqi Paratha (warq is gold- or silver-leaf, this wasn’t so graced). The bread is crisp on the outside, elastic in the middle and on a tasty gradient in between. I want to learn how to make this bread!

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For dessert, I had Shahi Tukra, a bit of toast soaked in sugar syrup and served in a pool of sweet milk reduction. I haven’t eaten this before, I don’t think, and have to admit I didn’t care for the texture, just personal preference.

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Not including tip, my meal here cost $129/Rupees 5140.

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