Kolkata : Kwality, Park Street

P.S. – Unfortunately no photos. 😦 

When talking about legendary restaurants of Kolkata, it would be hard not to include Kwality. This place has been in business for decades.

I have had countless meals here in my childhood (90s), their famed chole-bhature was a much cherished dish which we all used to look forward on a weekly basis.

Now that the Kolkata restaurant scene has gone a sea-change and after my experience (after decades) it would be a travesty to still include Kwality among the legendary restaurants.

TD;LR – The legend has fallen and a very bad fall at that. Though in all fairness, I hope mine was an one-off case.

It was my better half’s bday and since we both hadn’t dined-in at Kwality for a long time, we thought of visiting here instead of the tried and tested neighboring Bar-B-Q. As it turned out, it was a very wrong decision. 😦

Lets get to the experience straight away –

Positives :

1. This place still has an old world charm to it. One can literally soak in nostalgia just by being here.

2. Service is still very good, the managers and waiters all very efficient and very friendly and polite. A true rarity in today’s time and this is the ONLY reason I am giving it 1 rating.

3. Prices are still VFM, where else will you get Dal Makhni (among others) for 170 bucks! Its a different matter (more below) that its mediocre at best.

Negatives :

1. Food quality has deteriorated so badly, this place doesn’t deserve to be in Park Street at all which has full of restaurants serving super delicious food.

2. The mezzanine section is quite cramped up.

What we ordered :

2 Tomato Soup, Rs 145 each – Excellent, this is the kind of soup which is available everywhere in Kolkata but no where in Bangalore (where I stay).

1 Dahi Kebab, Rs. 225 – This was usual kebab and served with Dahi dip. This is NOT Dahi Kebab by any stretch of imagination. Taste didn’t justify the price. Avoidable.

1 Dal Makhni, Rs. 170 – Insult to Dal Makhni. When a place like Kwality can mess up a basic dish like Dal Makhni, its a signal that it needs to do something about it and ASAP. Avoidable.

1 Aloo Do Pyaaza, Rs. 185 – Very good, but very oily. On the plate after serving, one can see oil in puddles. This was apparently their special which they had placed on a card. Can be ordered if this is the ONLY dish being served in Kolkata.

1 Paneer Amritsari, Rs. 230 – Another special, horrible. Too oily, some particular spice, I think Methi, was too overpowering. Avoidable.

1 Paneer Butter Masala (PBM), Rs. 220 – After a not so very good experience with the above dishes and also that the quantity was less among 6 of us, I thought of ordering PBM thinking it would be as heavenly as the one in Bar-B-Q. Another big mistake. It looked very white and the taste was like having Paneer in Milk Gravy. Horrible. Avoidable.

1 Veg Raita, Rs. 115 – With nothing to eat the bread with, I had to order Raita. Saving grace.

Mix of Bread – Kulcha, Kabuli Naan, etc. Decent but nothing great. Kabuli naan was too thin and unlike what a Kabuli Naan should be.

Total Tab – Rs. 2882. As mentioned earlier, this place is very VFM. But not worth it at all. Way better alternative is to spend a little extra and visit other places in the vicinity.

To Kwality Chef – You all should be ashamed of working in Kwality and serving such horrible food. Please visit Bar-B-Q, taste their food (I will gladly reimburse), learn from their chef and think of improving your food. You are doing a disservice to your own profession which is about providing happiness and satisfaction through food.

Should you visit? Absolutely and vehemently NO.

Real estate is not cheap in Park Street and Kwality is blocking space which can be better utilized by other places. Heck even Jai Hind Dhaba would be a super contender to open at Park Street instead of Kwality.

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