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Restaurants that Love Wine


f course I had heard of the new restaurant

Magique, the name itself is intriguing and
enchanting, stirring faint memories of elaborate
circus acts in the Cirque du Soleil. The brainchild
of food impresario Marut Sikka, Magique opened its doors
just over two years ago in August 2007 and people have been
raving about its ambience and its food ever since. Its location
as part of the capitals relatively unexplored Garden of the Five
Senses is somewhat off the beaten track and falls in the nomans land between Delhi and Gurgaon. But as the glowing
reports continued to roll in, I decided to conquer my inertia
and take my wife out to celebrate her birthday.
It turned out to be one of our more memorable birthday
celebrations. Traversing the havoc created by the Metro
construction was like passing through hell before arriving
at the gates of heaven. Once we alighted from the car, we
were instantly charmed by the muted outdoor lighting, the
sound of water rushing through hidden channels and the
elegant architecture which lured us in. The only jarring note
was the ongoing IPL match in another corner of the garden.
For the life of me, I cannot imagine why people would want
to go to a fine dining restaurant to watch fast food cricket!
Fortunately, it did not intrude too much and the manager
ushered us to a quieter area. One of the selling points of
Magique is definitely the al fresco dining experience it affords
which cannot be said to be true of many restaurants in the
The cuisine at Magique is nouvelle and international,
with an eclectic selection of European, Asian, Japanese and

Magique restaurant, New Delhi, at night

local flavours, and enough variety to please every palate.

Being a Piscean, my choice of the Batter Prawns in Thai
Basil followed by an excellent grilled Rawas in Dill Sauce was
inevitable. My Taurean wife, being more in harmony with
the earth than water, found her Mushroom Stuffed Chicken
in Sage and Gorgonzola Sauce to be equally delicious.
Magique has a nice wine list with wines from all the major
producers including Australia, New Zealand, France, Italy
and Argentina. We settled on the Vina Tarapacas La Isla
Sauvignon Blanc from Chile which proved to be a delightfully
crisp and flavourful accompaniment to our meal.
Later in the year I had the chance to go back. Since it
was August and quite humid, after the initial mingling over
the first wine, we got a chance to sit down to dinner in the
air-conditioned indoor restaurant which was very tastefully
decorated and had comfortable saloon-type seating. The set
menu consisted of Prawn with Tomato, Wasabi and Jalapeno
Sauce, Crab Ravioli in Black Truffle Sauce followed by a
choice of Corn-fed Chicken or Lamb Chops. The courses
were paired with Italian wines from the Ceretto vineyards
which were being showcased by Federico, an affable and
engaging member of the family. Particularly memorable was
the Moscato dAsti 2007, a unique dessert wine with a great
balance between sweetness and acidity which proved to be
very pleasing to the guests.
Garden Village, Gate No. 3, Garden of 5 Senses, Westend Marg, Said ul
Ajaib, New Delhi 110030. Tel: +91 11 46008333 / 29536767

Sommelier INDIA 67