The culinary space in Varanasi is changing with many cafes and restaurants opening within a short span of time. The cuisines on offer are varied and each place provides a different experience altogether. This has been missing from the city for some time with the old franchises dominating the market. With the culinary boom, Varanasi has been witness to restaurants up to the mark with the metropolitans across.
Wife on Leave is one such addition to the city which offers a cafe styled multi-cuisine experience which you would love. The concept is likable and comes out with the name itself. Located centrally on the main road, the restaurant location is hard to miss. This white building invites the customers with the bold “WOL” written and a lot of parking space, which is a luxury in the city. Once you enter inside, you will be happy with the ample natural light seeping through and providing the setting a soothing feel. The fanatic wall art is hard to miss with quirky quotes, providing the interior a colorful feel. The setting of the furniture does provide the customers a lot of privacy and space yet you feel connected across.
Coming to the food – we loved every bit of what came out of the kitchen. Be it the presentation, the quality or the quantity. Pleasantly surprised! Prior to trying the place, I had read the reviews and was little skeptical in terms of the quantity but believe me, it is at par with the other places across. There were little tweaks of surprises in the taste of food and preparation which makes it shine above the average joe. Special mention for Chalo nachos, lemon iced tea, and vegetable biryani. Though my first visit, based on frequent visits of my peers, these are consistently great. But having said so, they do need to work on the pan-Asian cuisine offered. The Thai curry could have been much better as the preparation is tough to execute but has to be perfect for the tastebud to like it. Also, the nargisi kofta was on the sweeter side, but again, comes down to the preference. All in all, highly recommended.
Food tasted – Chalo nacho, Achari paneer tikka, Lemon iced tea, Ice Kaffe (Freak shake), Cold coffee, Vegetable pizza, Veg Thai curry, Vegetable biryani, Nargisi kofta and Lachha paratha.
Location – 5/5 (WOL is located centrally in Varanasi with ample of parking space. You can not miss the place with its beautiful white building right on the main road.)
Ambiance – 5/5 (White is the theme of the place – there are some quirky additions like quotes and wall art. There is ample light source and gives the restaurant a light feel. At par with some of the cafe I have been in metropolitan cities.)
Staff – 3.5/5 (The staff support is the key to make the customer’s meal make or break – for me, I would love to see more professional servers who greet you with a smile on their face. The customer should feel comfortable and attended to, without any breach of personal space. The only thing worth improving!)
Food – 5/5 (With delicious options to choose from, there is no complaint about the taste, quantity, and quality of the food coming out of their kitchen. Personally want to mention the beetroot chutney hidden below the paneer tikkas and of course the freak shake!)
Value for Money – 5/5 (Perfect price for perfect food. Comparing it to the prices across India, worth it. Might look more for Varanasi, but the culinary scene is changing and people will agree to the prices.)
What’s good? The food, hands down – especially Beetroot chutney!
What’s bad? The servers should be given a little bit of training to come at par with the national level restaurants!