I Expose A Michelin Star Chef In Lahore Who Runs “AMU”​ Secretly

5 min

Amu Yellowfin Tuna
Amu Yellowfin Tuna

I tried out the much hyped, “doesn’t want to found” place in Lahore – Amu. After hearing a lot about its location, interior, and especially its extremely high price tag, I decided I HAD to go and see what it was that everyone was so crazy about. And once I went, I found out every reason why people loved this place!

Amu Lahore is a low-key restaurant owned by the renowned Michelin Star chef, Chef Shahnawaz. As they say, he was a great chef in New York, who eventually moved to Lahore and opened up this eatery that has been driving people crazy ever since.

Although this restaurant is better known for its brunch, I ended up going for dinner instead.

The reason why I keep mentioning it as a low-key and “doesn’t want to be found” place is mostly because of its location, and the fact that there is no hype created whatsoever related to the restaurant. A very selective crowd goes there to dine in, as I have observed. This is perhaps since Amu does not create ads, it isn’t present on any social media, and it’s a very secretive little restaurant that serves you the most authentic European-American kind of cuisine.

One thing you need to know is Amu is ONLY open on weekends, and you HAVE to make a reservation before you go or else you won’t be accommodated!

I’m sure when someone walks in here for the first time, they would never expect it to be as amazing as it is. Amu is an old-school Bungalow in the posh area of Gulberg, Lahore. People get a hard time finding it first, since its also not on google maps. I’ll help you out with that though – its right next to Sadiq Furnitures and Islamic School in Gulberg 2, Lahore.

As mentioned, Amu is a home-based sort of a restaurant. You park in the garage of the home, enter through an adorable doorway, and walk into stacked apples on different shelves. (this was a new concept for me!)

You walk over a staircase, as the interior looks very old school. Its nothing too shiny or modern at all. It’s literally a place that probably sounds like your grandmother’s house, however, very well maintained. Dimly lit, very simple, and come to think of it, I absolutely loved the whole concept of the place once they seated us down. It gives you such a homey feeling!

The menu and our experience with the food:

Amu Menu
Amu Menu

We were presented with the menus, as Chef Shahnawaz himself came to us and greeted us. Here at Amu, you don’t get to choose from a wide range of options. You are to have a 4-course meal, and for each course, you can choose from two different options. However, only for the main course, we had 3 options to choose from. So keep this in mind definitely when you come to Amu! They change their menus weekly, and you have very limited options to order from.

Chef Shahnawaz ordered the server to serve us our drinks, and very politely explained to us each and everything on the menu so we could decide what we wanted. He also told us how everything was organic, and our food was made with the finest vegetables, spices and herbs ever. We were quite impressed and got onto ordering for ourselves!

Amu Tomato Soup
Amu Tomato Soup

We made sure to order the alternate dishes each so we would be able to try everything on the menu. We started off with the starters. Of the two mentioned in the menu, the “Roasted Plum Tomato Soup” was the better option in my opinion. One thing I’d like to mention here is that I am definitely not a big fan of soups. However, this Tomato soup just blew me away. The chef wasn’t kidding when he said they used “organic fruits and vegetables”, because I could easily taste it in the food! The tomato soup was SO rich in taste! Definitely the best soup I’ve ever had.

Amu Yellowfin Tuna
Amu Yellowfin Tuna

Coming up, in the next course, we had Yellowfin Tuna and Baked Brie. It’s true that you’re going to try out some different things here. Both these dishes although in the same course were poles apart in taste! One Tuna, and the other fruits. Both were in small portions, but I enjoyed them nevertheless.

Amu New York Strip Tenderloin

Finally, we received our main courses. I am a beef lover, and have tried the New York Tenderloin beef at many places – but by far, Amu’s Strip Tenderloin dish was the best. It was cooked Medium-Well, but the beef was so soft it literally melted in my mouth! It was served with sautéed veggies, which were great in taste, and unlike any other vegetables, I’ve ever had. The beef strips were placed on top of mashed potatoes.

Amu Dark Chocolate Mousse

And lastly, came the dessert. Again, I was delightfully pleased with the dessert. I loved their Dark Chocolate Mousse! One odd thing was being served with mint ice cream along with the mousse.

I am not a big fan of mint ice cream. The combination of the dessert might be great for lots of people because of mint and chocolate – but its a clear no from my side. The mousse was rich and chocolatey, but the mint chocolate was slightly off for my taste.

Here’s some other things off the menu:

Amu Baked Brie

The price range:

I had heard quite a lot about Amu’s price range being EXTREMELY high…but honestly how bad do you think it could have been? Fujiyama in Avari costed us about Rs. 5,000 per head. However, here at Amu, we paid around Rs. 6500 per head!

I was partially shocked, because the food was amazing, but I personally feel like dinner was way too expensive for the amount we got.

Here’s why you should DEFINITELY go to AMU:

  • If you want to have a great time with your friends or family, catch up in a quiet but nice environment, then Amu is definitely your go to. You’ll feel like you have great privacy, the place hardly seats 20-25 people at a time (a rough estimate) so there’s no noise at all. Definitely recommended for a romantic dinner out with your loved one as well!
  • You should try out Amu if you have patience and you’re trying to know what a 7-course meal is like. If I am not wrong, only Scafa in Lahore offers a full 7-course meal experience. Amu is quite close to it. 
  • If you want to experience amazing foreign cuisines.

Here’s why you should avoid going to the restaurant:

  • You should definitely NOT go here if you have children who are noisy, or even friends who love to laugh out loud. Its a very sophisticated place. While I myself do not enjoy being told off in public places, I’d say making too much noise at Amu is just messing with their ambience and decorum which is not appreciated. 
  • Again, you shouldn’t go to Amu if you’re not willing to spend a hefty amount on food.
  • Moreover, the food here served is strictly NOT desi!!! So do not dine in here if you’re in a mood for having traditional Pakistani food. 

My Verdict:

Amu was an absolutely amazing place, to begin with. Everything, from the service, food, ambiance, was remarkable and unmatchable. The only thing that slightly set me off was the unexpectedly high price, but I suppose with such great food comes a really high price!

There are several other places in Lahore that offer you some great lunch, but I guess Amu has its own speciality that has carved a way into people’s hearts! I definitely can’t wait to try out their brunch soon as well now.