By Rupali Lamba

Yum Yum Cha is a cute, colourful cubby hole at Select City Walk that serves up ‘little bundles of {Pan-Asian} joy, and huge bowls of happiness. The menu has been crafted with love and precision; which has become the signature of mastermind Varun Tuli, who has been changing the way Delhi dines and parties through Yum Yum Tree, and impeccable bespoke catering services respectively.

We were seated as soon as a table was available, and started our meal with the Seafood Salad. A cool tower of creamy tuna, sprinkled with fish roe, on a bed of chilled cubed cucumber. This was well appreciated by my fellow diner, who has managed a Japanese restaurant before. He was all praises for the freshness of the fish, and everything else on the plate.

This set the tone for the sushi platter {served in batches of 12; you can pick any three from their menu}. I don’t have to tell you how good Yum Yum sushi can be when it’s good. The new collection has been created from careful observation of what is well received by our city’s diners and what is not. The famous Ebi Tempura has been bettered, and the Salmon roll has been pimped up and rechristened. We also tried the Prawn Curry Dimsum, which started with a hit of aromatic turmeric and yellow curry, and ended with soft, salty flavoursome prawns. The Prawn Cheung Fun was THE BEST I have ever eaten {sorry, existing favourite}.

We then tried one of the stone bowl, seafood and basil meals, which was just how I like my food. Crunchy Veggies, well-cooked meat, fried-ish sticky and crusty rice, herbs such as basil – warm. My next visit will feature an iced tea {which is served in milk bottle style glass bottles}, the Cheung Fun, and this aforementioned stone bowl magic.

After all this goodness, we were served their signature Pork Ramen, which was presented in a most interesting fashion – on paper over a flame on a tray with fresh ramen, bowls, tongs and a ladle. The presentation was delightful, and enabled us to pick the bits we wanted and leave the ones we didn’t – which is new for ramen. It also had all the things that ramen should, however, it lacked the slow cooked fatty-ness that makes ramen the potion that it is; that cures homesickness, hangovers, heartaches and winter {I think my expectations of ramen are possibly too high}. I cannot complain about the individual elements in it though; the pork itself was cooked and sliced to perfection.

Our dinner ended with Matcha Ice Cream, which was encased in a gooey but not wet Matcha Jelly. It was dense, cooling, and very very reminiscent of standalone Japanese dessert cafes. There are also other ‘to die for’ flavours, such as coconut and jaggery, and you get to pick two {glee}.

The only downside of this display {besides the wait, which is a simple case of high demand, low supply} is the cramped space and tiny tables. If you order more than two dishes at once, you spend more time balancing and protecting them from yourselves and passersby, which distracts from the amazing food. One could argue that the spirit is ‘hawker style’, but the offering is much more sophisticated than that. Blame it on the mall!

Alas, the food is worth multiple visits and also the wait – if only until they start home delivery or expand spatially {fingers crossed}.

Notes in Our Little Black Book |

Yum Yum Cha is a tiny {we say this in reference to space} Pan Asian paradise tucked away in Select Citywalk, offering up a delectable range of Sushi, Ramen, and best off all, Matcha ice cream. We recommend multiple visits, even if you feel a bit crammed.

Where: 2nd Floor, Select Citywalk

Price for two: INR 1500 for two


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