This unique Kolkata restaurant nestled inside a rail museum, is a must-visit

A look around the museum, a stroll along the railway tracks, spending some time on the lush lawns, a quick ride on the toy train, and a hearty meal, will make your day worthwhile.
Banjara murgh tikka
Banjara murgh tikkaAnindya Saha

Ever wondered how it would feel to get up on a luxe train within the city and enjoy a wholesome, delicious meal, overlooking rail bogies and tracks? We have a place in mind, only that the train would be stationary! We are talking about a hidden gem in our city — the Imperial Kitchen, housed inside the Howrah Rail Museum, only a few minutes away from Howrah railway station. One can easily plan a day out with friends and family, and if there are kids, it will surely surprise them. A look around the museum, a stroll along the railway tracks, spending some time on the lush lawns, a quick ride on the toy train, and a hearty meal, will make your day worthwhile.

Facade
Facade

Owned by Saurabh Rai, Imperial Kitchen is set up in a refurbished rail bogie, and has both indoor and outdoor seating, boasting a classic, old-school, multi-cuisine menu. The wooden interiors have windows with white curtains through which you can peep into nature while enjoying the food. As we were discussing and planning our next trip on a train, we ordered a mojito, Hawaiian bliss, and Watermelon splash, which relieved us of the heat in no time.

Interiors
Interiors

We were super hungry by then, and we relished the Drums of heaven that arrived at our table. The fiery dish provided a contrasting flavour to the sweet mocktails. As we relished the combination, their signature Banjara murgh tikka arrived. The creamy chicken kebab had a melt-in-the-mouth texture with a cheesy outer texture that was tandoor-grilled to perfection. Dipped in green chutney, and topped with some spiced onions, this preparation is any kebab lover’s dream. The crispy Kolkata fish finger, up next, was a classic choice, and we quite enjoyed it.

Daal Mughalsarai
Daal Mughalsarai

It was time for the main course, and we decided to stick to an Indian menu. We got Masala kulcha, butter naan, Daal Mughalsarai, and Kosha mangsho. The pillowy soft kulcha with a generous stuffing of masala, paired with Daal Mughalsarai tasted so good. The daal was undoubtedly the best that we have had in recent days. Cooked with spices on a low flame for long hours, the dish imparted all the flavours that you may look for in a good kali daal. The mutton, too, was balanced, with a spicy, flavourful gravy and fall-off-the-bones meat.

Roast chicken gravy
Roast chicken gravy

We moved on to order a Continental platter of grilled fish in lemon butter sauce. The flaky fish fillet topped with a creamy lemon butter sauce was a refreshing choice after the heavy on-the-palate Indian gravies. Served with a portion of the creamiest mashed potatoes and sautéed veggies, we wiped off the plate clean in no time.

Price for two: INR 600 onwards

Pictures by Anindya Saha

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