Step inside and you realize the entire place wear an aura of semi-casual dining. There is nothing too commercial about the place. All the seating furniture has been smartly chosen for easy maneuvering and during on our early morning visits, we chanced upon the care-takers laboring hard over each chair and table, shining them with pure sweat rather than the customary dusting. The staff is never hurried, perhaps very used to the daily footfalls. Some might seem passive but they know their stuff, never missing to update you about the seating capacity status or the waiting time. Don't expect a queue but yes, there are days when you might need to stand for some minutes in the veranda-like area. But, this too is good.
The holding area houses a chaat-wala who seems self-enterprising, taking his sweet time to fry & perfect ever tikki. That typical fragrance of fried potatoes is rich this spot is covered by a huge tree. The tree also houses a cat! This meow is not averse to human interaction. Just consider this - three times during the day, she forages into the waiting space, eating tikki and papdee leftovers without stressing about curious humans like us. You will find the cat being stroked and patted by some guests too. Not ready to take a step back, the black & white patterned cat actually meows at you if you are holding your plate of chaat, reminding you that you owe her something grand as a part of the leftover clean-up job!!
The best part of the Menu is the combinations. Most of these are smartly prepared, ensuring that the traditional and modern eating options are decently bundled. These bundled combos define the real Kadimi aura. The servings are big and they are not averse to adding something extra if you take a moment to mention some specific detail. For instance, I like my extra parantha without the extra greasing while Moha wants the snacks not to be served at one go. There are nearly 12 combos to choose from and you can literally trust all of them to not disappoint you. The gravies are never stale. That typical familiarity with Indian gravies is restricted here. I guess freshness makes the same dishes taste a lot better. A couple can easily consume three combos put together.
When seated, you look at the backsplash tiles that have been horizontally spread. The color combinations of this dynamic area dictate the visual appeal. The best thing is people aren't going crazy with their hectic schedules and there is a sense of time to the place. We are yet to try to first floor dining and have heard good reviews about the terrace dining options. When you exit, you have a small paanwala, a florist with limited options, and Gurudwara right across the street will always have some folks moving around. Despite all of this, the city buzz of not-waiting-for-a-breath is under control. Nothing around Kadimi looks pretentious. There is no hippocrisy of typical Indian food carrying phirangi nomenclature.
For small gatherings, a small meal before the movies, or for dining when you are too tired, Kadimi is a damn good option. I always tip just for the sake of letting the staff know that I appreciate their unhurried approach. Just one thing - the meow has been missing across the last two visit. Anyone who can help me decode her on-ground schedule...please reply here.
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