Est, Hilton

Slowly, but surely, eating out is becoming expensive. And cheap! Uh? Contradicting, right? What seems to be happening is that the per person eating out at common places are slowly going high. And for something similar, the 5 star prices are coming down. Now, a first look at the menu and this may not seem right. Prices look ridiculous for a casual eating out or meeting with friends, but over the past two years with a lot of business meetings in the coffee shop of hotels, the overall bill is a little startling.

And that is why when our friends came down from the US and a bunch of 10 of us had to meet, we met once in a comfort coffee shop and eat well. We paid about Rs. 6500, which is about 650 per head. And for the second time, we met at EST, Hilton. This time we paid about Rs. 6900! Thats why opening statement that is contradicting itself!

So we had lots of cake. The ones on the counter are priced lower than most coffee shops! We loved the mango cake and the pistachio cream cake among the four or five different ones we had. And then, surprisingly their orange juice was excellent. I mean, how much can you do to an orange,but whatever they did, it was nice. The price (and the reason the bill was high) was about Rs. 300, so normally it might be avoided.

And then croissants. And french fries. And pop corn, a very nicely flavoured cheese and jalepeno pop corn!!! Two of it, in fact. And sandwiches. More sandwiches. More fries. More pop corn, this time another flavour, I forgot what that was! Tasty though. My US friend finally caved in and said he wanted the Biriyani. We warned him. He couldn't care less. He ordered. We all had one spoon. He was left with three. He wasn't complaining. Biriyani wasn't fabulous, but was flavourful and the lamb was soft. When you're a bunch of ten, it is very difficult to remember all that was ordered!!!!

Everyone was happy with the bill. And the ambiance. With a nice comfy sofa all ten of us had comfy seating with a large coffee table in between. There are tables of 2,4,6 too for smaller groups, but only one that can accommodate 10. So, fancy hotels are attractive now, at least their coffee shops when they have a counter. But food from the menu is priced 5 star!!! The temporarily-US-return-friend was happy with the bill that he foot it himself and no one went dutch.

Happy Eating.