Location – 28-A, Below Cafe Mocha, Def Col Market, New Delhi
Type – Fast Food. Self Service. Kaathi Rolls
The decor is very unconventional. Lights (inadequate & dim for the type of outlet) are made of old (waste) metal ‘Bhompu Type’ loud speakers, seats made with concrete slabs, partitioning done with waste tin barrels & containers, use of worn out glass, air con system matching stained to look old etc. It might appear funky in first look but appears cheap in prolonged subsequent looks.
The seating is inadequate with seating space for @ 20 people only. The design of plastic chairs looks cheap and is extremely uncomfortable. The concrete seating on the other side of the table is even worse. Remember, it’s a self service outlet with order placement on ground level and seating at basement. Customers who’ve already ordered their food, stand almost on your head with their order slips (along with the oversized food service intimation pagers) in their hand… waiting or rather almost forcing you (with their stares) to finish your food ASAP and vacate. In my opinion, RollMaal would have been a far better setup with standing tables only.
But let’s leave the ambience & looks aside. We primarily went to RollMaal for food only. We tried 4 types of Rolls…
● Chettinad Southy Chicken
● Multani Chicken Tikka
● Rollu Tawa Masala
● Bombay Style Chicken Franky
Almost all the outer wraps (outer paranthas) tasted similar. However these were described differently in menu. These were mostly made of thick layer of Atta. Somewhat under cooked to some extent. Some of our ordered rolls were with egg as per menu, but egg was least felt in visibility and taste.
Fillings consist of very less real meat or chicken and consist mostly of onion tomato masala. There was an overdose of selective spices depending on the type of roll, which virtually over-powered all other ingredient of the filling. Also mutton in the rolls was chewy and we discarded it. Not to forget… portion / roll size are small, if not tiny.
Their signature drink “Rollu’s ReMix” was recommended by the staff but it turned out to be a simple “Goli Wala Lemon” mixed with some local “Shikanji Masala” served in a small cheap type paper tumbler. The drink was warm. No separate ice was served, despite twice asked for.
We also ordered Keema pao, which had 2 pao buns served with it but Keema (warm, not hot) was not even enough for one pao. Keema was served in a thin plastic cup, similar to the size and quality of a small cup of commercially sold ice cream. It’s obvious that if this is their standard packing for Keema, then they’ll never be serving it piping hot as the chosen container is suitable only for warm and not hot contents.
They gave us @ 5ml of green chatani in a tiny plastic container (Excessive use of Plastic… shows they’re not considerate towards environment). Also being served complimentary was an alien stuff called “Choor Choor Papad” in a similar tiny 5ml plastic container. It was some sort of crushed Papad or khakhra and had a strange sweet salted taste. The quantity was not enough for a single tasting bite. How it could compliment a kathi roll… at least I couldn’t understand.
The quantity / size of accomplishments shown in pictures at websites is almost double of what is actually been served. Also there’s a large number of positive reviews for an outlet which is not even two month old. I don’t say these reviews are not genuine but I’m surprised with the contrast between what others have written and what I experienced. Luck, or should I say, bad luck.
The entire concept of designing your own rolls at RollMaal is unique, innovative, novel and very good but execution is imperfect. Had I got these rolls at a roadside Calcutta / Patna Roll Cart at prices (remember the taxes also) @ 60% to 70% cheaper than these, I had nothing to complain about. I never said and don’t say that RollMaal is BAD but I’m Not impressed either. Neither with taste & nor with the value for money. I would say, It’s the murder of my high expectations. RollMaal has nothing in it which can urge me to visit them, again.
P.S. – I was accompanied by my son, who’s a great fan of rolls and has had rolls at almost all the worthy outlets of Delhi. Incidentally, he shared the same views individually.
Also, immediately after visiting RollMaal and experiencing such large order for 2 persons, we still went to “Aap Ki Khatir” and had a Mutton Seekh Roll as dessert.
Written by Rajeev Gulati