Review: Xenia Lounge in Banjara Hills offers global cuisine and classic cocktails with a fun chess-themed decor
It’s rather difficult to find your way to Xenia Lounge — not just on the busy Road no 12, Banjara Hills, but also on the 5th floor of the Banjara Green building Hyderabad. When the lift reaches the top floor, the door opens to a small space with black and white chessboard walls, making you feel like you’re in a maze. Thanks to General Manager Raaj K, we were quickly ushered in to the lounge and the brightly lit space impresses us instantly.
The 80-seater outlet is themed around chessboard — right from the black and white walls and flooring to an illustration of a cat and a mouse playing chess with a full moon on the background. While one corner is dedicated to partygoers with a few high tables and a bar, the other is for the ones who would like to dine. What truly stands out are the huge cutouts of chess pieces — King, Queen, knight and bishop — behind the seating area. The chairs and tables also match the ‘black and white’ theme.
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Sangria for the soul
The menu at Xenia boasts Continental, Italian and German cuisines. The bar menu too is elaborate with classic and a few signature cocktails. We tried Xenia’s Signature Sangria (Jacobs Creek red wine) — the bright red drink with ‘secret’ additions by the bartender made for a great start, as we waited for the food to arrive.
First up was the Broccoli Bites — the soft broccoli with a hint of flavoured yoghurt makes this appetiser delicious. Those looking for small eats, can opt for Nachos and Vapour Fries from their bar snack menu.
Apart from the regular starters, the menu also has a healthy offering of sandwiches and main course options. Caprese Grilled Panini (stuffed with bell peppers, cheese, zucchini and carrots and served with fries) and Masala Fried Pomfret are some of our top recommends.
For mains, we try the Chicken Gramolica. The perfectly marinated chicken breast, stuffed with spinach, chopped veggies and cheese, with spicy black pepper sauce was surely the winner for the night. If you’re a seafood lover, don’t forget to ask for a Chef’s Special Lobster at Restaurant, which is served only on request.
As we finish off the refreshing mocktail, Bumble Bee (watermelon, mint, lemon and apple), Raaj tells us that ‘xenia’ stands for ‘good hospitality’ in Greek. With courteous staff, quirky interiors and delicious fare, Xenia Lounge does stay true to its name, we think, before we make our way out.
Price for two: Rs.1,500.
Pics: S Senbagapandiyan.