Tuesday, 31 March 2015

A Night Out at Taj Ummed (The Gateway Hotel)

I love food. Simple. Whether it's cooking or eating, I enjoy trying new cuisines and items. So naturally if I have to celebrate something, I'd go out to dine. Recently, I quit my old job for a better new job and that of course called for a celebration. As my entire family is foodie, we love exploring new eateries. As my budget for the party was good, we decided to go to some fancy place.

After some research, we decided to go for The Gateway Hotel (Taj Ummed) as it's one of the best hotels in Ahmedabad and we had never been there. Now Taj Ummed has two restaurants: GAD, which is a 24-hour multi-cuisine coffee shop, and Narmada, a restaurant exclusively offering Indian cuisines with wonderful live classical music. Initially I was confused as to which restaurant to choose because I was sure that the music in Narmada would be awesome but I didn't want to just eat Indian. I wanted to try something new. Hence I went for a voting system (I know it's too much but we simply love doing these things when it comes to food) and GAD won hands down because it offers multi-cuisine buffet dinner.

As soon as I entered the hotel lobby, I was greeted by a wonderful Christmas tree. And of course, the ambiance was simply breathtaking. You can see it for yourself what I mean by breathtaking decor and ambiance.

A beautiful fountain right in the center of the lobby

Awesome flower arrangement in the lobby

I loved this Christmas tree in the lobby. It made me wish I was a kid and could grab one of the gifts under the tree

The same way, GAD was tastefully decorated with classic furniture and beautiful flower arrangements. In short, the restaurant was quite spacious and beautifully laid out to offer relaxing atmosphere.

I loved this classic wooden setting to give a coffee shop look to the restaurant

These wooden frames looked quite charming

The high ceiling gave a spacious look to the entire restaurant

As usual, the buffet included soup, starter, salads, main course and dessert. There were few things that I liked about the buffet and few things that I didn't.

Let's start with the things that I liked.

Quality: I simply loved the quality of the food. When you take a bite, you can actually realize how fresh and super-quality the ingredients are. There's nothing second-grade about the food.

Presentation: The salads and desserts were presented in such a way that you couldn't resist trying it out.

I liked the way the buffet was laid out, specially the flower arrangement in the middle of the buffet table

Service: The hostess serving our table was very helpful. She even served us second helping of salads and main course when we requested. Believe me when I say this was going over and above her call of duty. I've seen in many fancy restaurants that waiters refuse to serve buffet items on your table quoting restaurant policies but there was no such issue over here.

Taste: I loved most of the items laid out in the buffet. I had tried Hummus in few places and I wasn't a huge fan of it but when I tried it over here, I converted into a Hummus fan. I loved the softness and moistness of their tandoori rotis. And their desserts! They were simply out of this world, specially Badaam Halwa.

Prices: The buffet dinner price was Rs. 683 (including taxes) per person, which I think is quite reasonable. Raddison Blu offers horrible food at around Rs. 750 per person for buffet dinner. So I am quite happy with Taj Ummed's prices.

Now about the things that I didn't like.

Spread: Compared to their prices, the spread was quite limited. There was only one starter, one Italian pasta dish, couple of Oriental dishes and Punjabi dishes. At other similar restaurants, you would you'd have found live counter, mocktails and a better variety of dishes, which wasn't the case over here.

Taste: Although overall I loved the taste of the food, there were certain dishes, such as Vegetable Kolhapuri and Palak Paneer that I didn't like. Instead of being spicy, Kolhapuri was tangy with overpowering taste of tomatoes, while Palak Paneer didn't have any salt at all. Of course I know that big hotels offer food that's little bit bland due to their international clientele but having dishes that do not have any salt at all is bad.

Conclusion: If you are thinking to go for a fancy dining experience or thinking to impress your date, Taj Ummed is a good option. If you don't like limited spread options, don't go again, but it's at least worth a visit once.


  1. Never been to Ahmedabad but Taj Ummed does look like a great option. Congrats on your new job :)