When it comes to wine, one comes across gimmicks aplenty. The winemakers seduce you with their impressive packaging, flashing vintages, and quirky labels (think, Frank B, a label with a personal message that comes after 'I am only drinking with you because…').
Wine is typically perceived as being a sophisticated drink but that's set to change as Delhi/NCR gets its first taste of wine on tap at Iredus, located in the corporate epicentre of Gurgaon. This rather informal approach to wine suits the location in question. With beer freeflowing across microbreweries and bars in Gurgaon, it's time wine got its due here as well.
As you walk in, you come across what looks like a remodeled industrial space. Metal, in the form of shelves and installations share space with more metal in the form of shiny wine dispensers and chilling cabinets. All this juxtaposed on a canvas of minimal furnishing with bare tabletops and walls.
The evening began with a fruity and very French Fernand Engel reserve, one of Iredus' 24 handpicked wines on tap. Some worthy mentions are: a rare Chateau Lafite Rothschild; Ricossa Barolo from Italy; a family-owned label, Torres Coronas, from Spain; and a South African L'avenir Pinotage, among others. Patrons buy a cash card and swipe it on the dispenser with their wine of choice. Servings are in 30, 60, and 125ml. Tipplers can also choose from eight other spirits on tap-from Jim Beam bourbon, Pinky Vodka to Hendricks gin. The food works well in this context as it is a mix of Indian favourites and global finger food. For starters, the tandoori salmon retained its sweetness and also carried hints of its mustard marination. The chicken malai tikka is a staple in Delhi bars and is well done. The hot-hot chicken wings needed some more time on grill.
Next came the mains, and while the quirky chicken cheese burger pizza would fit in at a diner, here it seemed like an odd inclusion. The flavours though were spot on. Two Rajasthani favourites, junglee chicken and an ominously red laal maans, were authentic in flavour and mercifully restrained in terms of spice. Best enjoyed with garlic naan.
End the meal with the delicate orange and ginger crust cheesecake. The hot orange mocha too is a great option should you want to skip dessert and get a shot of caffeine instead. The food at Iredus is worth your money but that said, the high point of this restaurant still remains the fresh new concept of wine on tap.
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