The Whitefield Arms is a British pub which is part of the The Waverly hotels located in VR mall. I recently visited here with a blogger friend of mine as part of an invite to try some of their existing menu and also a few dishes from their new menu which will be soon launched.
We were welcomed by a young hotel representative Zulfiquer Ali who then introduced us to the very experienced Executive Chef, Bharathan V. We were provided with some insights and informed that the place has its history associated with pre-independence during 18th century and the likes of Winston Churchill who supposedly was posted here. It is said that Whitefield was given away to the Anglo-Indian community as part of a settlement during the 18th century.
Ambiance is definitely something to look out for here, a positive. The entrance is through the Mall and takes you straight to the pub having a small seating capacity and a bar, of course. The other entry takes you to the vast outdoor seating which gives a breath of fresh air with its greenery and fresh air/breeze amidst the black and white decor. We dined here for lunch and enjoyed the sunny-cool day. I am sure this would look a lot more beautiful and cooler in late evenings and at night time.
A mix of dishes from existing and new menu is what we tasted that supposedly is curated with an Anglo-Indian twist to them. Here’s what I tasted and my take on it.
Mulligatawny soup – veg and chicken: The famous madras pepper broth that has a mellowed down subtle taste which is the anglicised twist. With added chicken chunks, this becomes the nonveg version. It was light yellow in colour, very creamy and a hearty one to try. The squeeze of lemon and addition of little rice did make a unique and nice combination.
Haymarket stack salad: Almost a good light meal in itself. Bell peppers, tomatoes, corn, greens, tortilla chips with a good drizzle of heavy dressing. Pretty good salad and a must try.
Mocktail: They custom made for me a fizzy drink per my liking which was nice.
Mushroom poppers (New): Mushrooms stuffed with cheese, herbs and chopped bell peppers, then battered and fried. They were really good to pop into the mouth and enjoy the taste and texture. They were presented with a salad and a tomato based dip although it wasn’t necessary. The tomato based dip was a little too sweet and tangy. This can be either eliminated or improved to balance the already tasty mushrooms.
Devil chicken fry (New): Whoa! This was really an evil dish! Quite hot and spicy and very well made, a must try. It had dominant flavors of South Indian cuisine rather than being Anglo-Indian. The mayonnaise spread on top can be avoided or be provided as a separate dip.
Chicken pantra (New): This was more or less deep fried chicken spring rolls with stuffing of minced chicken + garlic + peppers. A nice dish but can’t beat the previous ones so was above average.
TWA chips, cheese and gravy: French fries topped with cheese coated with dal makhni gravy. The fries were made well and cheese is always a good combo. The dal makhni flavor however was lost amidst the cheesy fries and had almost solidified; maybe because we spent time clicking pictures? Anyway, this is one of their best selling dishes so I am told and our experience might have turned out different.
Beef tenderloin burger: I rarely eat beef but I was glad I tried this one which had well flavored ground beef. One of the most moist and juiciest burgers I have had in the recent past. The buns were soft and fresh and the chips and salad alongside made it even better. Go for it.
Vilayathi veg with saffron rice (New): Lightly flavored saffron rice and a vegetable gravy consisting of zucchini, carrot, capsicum, broccoli etc. It was creamy and nice but I enjoyed most of the other dishes comparatively.
Railway mutton curry: Mutton curry cooked with potatoes and served with rice, prawn crisps and a little salad. This was nice and simple.
The best part of all the starters and main course was the accompanying salad. Each salad was different from one another and very tasty. I couldn’t stop myself from trying all of these as I just loved them.
Classic carrot cake for two: This looked beautiful. I have never seen a carrot cake look this good! It was very nice, not too sweet and the cream cheese layers balanced it out.
Chocolate sin for two: Yet another lovely looking dessert. A chocolate lover will be bowled over just by its looks. Chocolate fudge cake with a heavy drizzle of chocolate ganache garnished with a white chocolate cigar. This was nice too.
Saffron poached pear crumble sundae: What a beauty this was, just wow! I expected a dessert that would be presented with a full/halved poached pear in the form of a sundae as I am a fan of MasterChef series and I often see brilliant desserts made and presented this way. But this one was totally different and I was slightly disappointed not to have got one as per my expectations – but that’s not their fault. It had chopped poached pear with ice cream, some crumble at the base and high dose of cream at the top. This was good but I would suggest to reduce the quantity of cream however.
Overall, it was an indeed good experience here and I loved most of the dishes. The only thing I felt is that you do not see much of the english twist in the dishes served which I have no complaints about and actually quite happy. But it could confuse a few people if they are specifically looking for or have high expectations of the Anglo-Indian theme based food.
Service was friendly and courteous. There could be a slight delay in making your food as we did have to wait for a while during the initial course but later picked up speed. Every staff and the other chefs we interacted with were helpful and courteous.
Food – 4/5, Service – 4/5, Cost – 3.8/5.
I am a teetotaller and can’t comment on the alcohol or drinking experience at this pub.