“Oh no I have just under an hour
and a half to squeeze in a lunch before the next meeting begins” seems to have
become the phrase that every corporate executive utters. But then, going to a
restaurant, ordering food, waiting for the food to arrive, enjoying it and
making it back to the office or meeting venue is always a dicey situation. This
is why these Coporate lunch deals are awesome! They are total value for money,
quite extensive and filling as well. 
There I was at Dario’s, my newest
favouritest [yes, I cooked up that word] restaurant.  It is an all veg Italian restaurant that is
just about 6 months old and has me hooked. The food is simply amazing, and they
have managed to maintain the standards as well.
Sometime back they introduced a
special menu for 3pm to 7pm slot. There are people who waltz in expecting
something to eat, but then the kitchen is just taking a break before they gear
up for dinner service. So, these guys have launched a special menu consisting
of simple sandwiches and pizzas for this zone during the day.
And now they are back with this
new offer. When I met Suresh Cumar, he mentioned that the corporate lunch deal
has just been rolled out and the response has been quite promising.  Nice!
I was shown to my table, and the
menu was offered. I half expected a simple menu, but then was quite surprised
to see how extensive it was. There were 3 drinks, 3 soups, 3 salads, 5 pizzas,
2 risottos, 6 different pasta dishes and 4 desserts. You could choose 1 from
each category and create your lunch meal. Wow, that is quite a lot to choose
from. And all this for just Rs390 plus taxes.
I opted for my favourite drink of
the season- Fresh lime soda [salt],
the Funghi Soup [ Cream of Mushroom
soup], Mista salad [mixed fresh
lettuce leaves, iceberg, lollo rosso & ricola with tomatoes, olives, cheese
and mustard dressing]. For the main course, I knew what I wanted even before I
saw the menu- Asparagus Risotto
[even though it is not listed in the menu, I was told it was available]. And
finally for dessert, once again I ordered without blinking an eye – Lemon Cheese cake. They also had the
Baked Yoghurt tart, rich chocolate mousse and Chocolate brownies with chocolate
I have eaten here at Dario’s
numerous times, once with family and they fell in love with the place, esp my
grandparents. Simple, no masala and flavourful delicious dishes is how my
gramma describes the place.
The Fresh Lime soda arrived
within minutes and while I was enjoying the cool drink, I noticed the place
slowly fill up, some in groups of 5 or more and others in 2s and 3s. It was
good to see the place got a good lunch crowd even on a weekday.

My soup arrived and it was thick, creamy and every spoonful had the lovely mushroom flavour in it. Then came the salad, now for those of you thought salads are boring and bleh, you should try them here. With shavings of Parmesan cheese on top, it was refreshing. During the course of the meal, chatted a bit with the Chef and Suresh about the menu and the recent workshop they had [for kids]. Suresh also mentioned he had few other interesting plans up his sleeve and shall reveal them with due course of time.
Ta da, there was my Asparagus Risotto. I could see the chunks of asparagus through the risotto and generous sprinkle of cheese on top. I actually thought they had increased their portion size and felt this was too much for a single person. It was heavenly… wiped my bowl clean, well, not literally. Must mention that my gramma is keen on replicating this risotto at home [God save me] Cooled off my heels for a bit preparing for the Lemon Cheese cake and ended the meal with a smile on my face and a happy tummy.

So next time you are around
Alwarpet or Poes garden and wondering what to do for lunch, drive down to
Dario’s and enjoy their corporate lunch meal. You won’t regret it~!!  
Dario’s Address:
#11, Kasturi Rangan Road,
2nd Street,
Chennai- 600018
Ph:             044-4919 3333      

URL: http://www.darios.in [you can not only read about the restaurant, but also see the detailed menu]

Landmark: Next to Aswene Hospital [1st right after the Russian Cultural Centre]
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