Twist is the new kid on the Cyber Hub restaurant block, serving up ancient Chinese foods with a modern sensibility. Its interiors are a pastiche of styles wherein a lady shyly smiles out of a mural in one corner while another wall is patterned with blossoms; a single shade of grey is the dominant colour because, who needs 50. The music is pleasant and low, fading into the background as one addresses one’s chopsticks, condiments and or dining companions.
The “twist” at Twist is that the portions are individualised so that each diner can eat what they want as opposed to everyone having to eat American chopsuey because your kid cousin is a brat. And speaking of American chopsuey, there are no “chindian” mutations here, only stuff from straight across the border, the not so contentious one. So there’s a large selection of appetizers, dim sums and main dishes, accompanied by an equally long alcohol menu for the more Dionysian diners. Abstemious and frugal diners as you know us to be, we content ourselves with some excellent green tea, punctuating each course with a cup.
Never having learned as kids, we start by playing with fire, ordering a Dragon Roll and Tiger Prawns Beijing Style, with a Jade Fish to help cool things off, and a Chicken Satay because it’s chicken satay. The fish and prawn paddle in first, the former comprising moist and flaky basa filets served with an unusual (for the Chinese) coriander and thyme sauce which we can’t help compare to our desi hari chutney. The flavours come together swimmingly and we now know what to dip our fish tikkas in, in the future. The prawns come fiery red, and tossed with peppers, onions and garlic in chillies, with the prawns firm and cooked through. A caveat, dear reader: the Chinese here doesn’t burn a hole in your mouth or ambush you with bold flavours, instead it plays a far more subtle game with your palate. Comrade Mao would have approved. Perhaps that’s why the dragon roll feels distinctly toothless; served with a mango and hoisin glaze, the vegetable and glass noodle rolls come without a bite or any discernible elements except the glaze itself. Luckily, the Thai import of satay swoops in next with an exquisite balancing of spices in each skewer of the juicy chicken.
Next up we get a mixed basket of dimsum, which comprises the traditional Cantonese pairing of Prawn Hargao and Chicken Sui Mai along with the more contemporaneous Prawn and Chive with Chicken Bokchoy. Each crystal dumpling is textbook but it’s the Chicken Bokchoy which steals the show, served in its own little bowl within the basket and slathered with a piquant sauce. While happy to remain in dim sums for the duration of the meal, we have a job to do. Eschewing carbs once we learn we don’t have to wade through any gravy, we get Pepper Tenderloin and Kung Pao Pork. The buff is gamey and garlicky, while the pork is a tad underwhelming; the crushed peanuts on it are a nice touch, though. We end our meal with a decent crème brulee of unknown provenance which we put away post haste; we just spied some more tea in the kettle.
Meal for Two: Rs 2500 (including taxes, excluding alcohol)
Address: 17-18, Cyber Hub, Gurgaon Contact: 9871185638