Breakfast à la Vadodara @ Shree Krishna, Akota, Vadodara

This is relatively new branch of the age old Shree Krishna Restaurant, Madanzampa that exists from 1956.

The restaurant remains largely occupied during mornings, especially on week-ends for its local breakfast dishes.

Our groups of 6 tried Sev Usal, Bhajia Usal, Chatako, Bataka Poha, Sev Khamani, Sabudana Khichdi and Jalebi.

Sev Usal and Bhajia Usal are cousine dishes with one topped with sev while the other is served with bhajia. Spicy as usual and capable to heat up your entire body.

See my review of Jai Maakali Sev-Usal on Zomato to know more about Sev-Usal, a dish unique to Vadodara, http://www.zoma.to/rRwmzm

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Chatako

Chatako, one of the most famous dish of the restaurant, is a dish of patra in spicy gravy. Although famous, I did’t appreciate it as much as I appreciate Sev-Usal or Bhajia-Usal.

Bataka Poha, Sev Khamani and Sabudana Khichdi requires no introduction. These dishes are more house-hold than they are street-food. None of them disappoint us.

Ambiance is canteen like and equally noisy. Service depends on readiness of food. Super quick for some dishes while you may have to wait for ages to get some. These are not unexpected given how these restaurant operates and the great value for money food it brings.

In all, a good place to spend a light morning with friends and family over local breakfast dishes.

Food: 4/5

Service: 3.5/5

Ambiance: 3.5/5

VFM: 4.5/5

Shree Krishna Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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#RoyalIndianExperience @ Shakahari, JW Marriott, Pune

Ever wondered how a royal dining would have been and what royals used to eat? I always did and it took me a trip to JW Marriott, Pune to understand that royal dining is less about royal food and more about a royal experience. As far as food it concerned, it is the authenticity that makes it royal.

A royal dining experience with authentic food is what makes Shakahari, a pure vegetarian restaurant at JW Marriott, Pune, distinct from others. Formerly known for its delicious Pan Asian veg. cuisine, Shakahari now showcases an entirely new theme of #RoyalIndianExperience, presenting a lavish menu based on authentic Indian cuisines inspired from regions of India with the royal monarchy.

Our trip to Pune started with light showers in Mumbai. While the atmosphere in Mumbai started becoming cooler, we received a warm welcome upon reaching JW Marriott, Pune. We were greeted with Kokum Sherbet to cool off after a tiring journey.

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After a quick introduction session with some of the key staff, we were ushered to the lunch table. The table was so meticulously arranged, we were reluctant to touch anything and make it unordered. Everything from the silverware, thali and cutlery, chutney and pickle container to the serviette and the ring had a royal touch.

Shakahari (PC: JW Marriott)
Shakahari (PC: JW Marriott)

We got started with a pour of Fratelli wines, a basket of papad/papdi, freshly cut salad, pickles and varieties of chutney like mint, peanut and plum which perfectly complemented the food.

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In starters, we had Dahi Wada, Palak Patta Chaat, Rajma Lasooni Salad, Palak Chawli Tikki, Beetroot Tikki, Besan Chilli and Amritsari Paneer. It will be almost impossible to describe the burst of flavors the dishes had so I will rather stick to what I liked the most. From starters, I liked Palak Patta Chaat and Rajma Lasooni Salad the most. The Palak Patta Chaat gave a typical crunchy chaat like experience and the Rajma Lasooni Salad had a hint of burnt garlic flavor in it which won many hearts.

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At Shakahari, the menu is continuously evolving and the restaurant follows the concept of dual cuisines. On the day we visited, the menu comprised Rajasthani and North Indian cuisines.

The Rajasthani main course included:

Ker Sanger ke Kofta
Rajasthani Ker, bamnera beans dumplings cooked in fresh tomato gravy.

Jodhpuri Gatta Curry
Steamed gram flour dumpling, cooked in spicy tangy hung yogurt gravy.

Subz Panchmel
Mélange of selected vegetables tossed in dry spices flavored with asafoetida.

Dal Bati Churma
Rajasthan special-lentil preparation and baked wheat flour dough served with ghee and jaggery.

Gatta ka Pulao
Spiced Gram flour dumpling cooked on dum with basmati rice.

Assorted Breads
Multigrain Phulka, Palak Poori, Ajwaini Poori.

I was trying Ker Sanger ke Kofta and Jodhpuri Gatta Curry for the first time and liked them both but it was Dal Bati Churma that I liked the most. perhaps one of the best I have had outside Rajasthan.

The North Indian main course included:

Dum Paneer Kasoori
Homemade cottage cheese simmered in rich tomato gravy, delicately flavored with fenugreek seeds.

Subz Makhmali Kofta
Vegetable kofta filled with dried plums, almonds simmered in a cardamom cashew gravy.

Pindi Chooley
Slow cooked chickpea preparation flavored with whole Indian spices tempered with dried pomegranate seeds, smoked with desi ghee.

Dal Shakahari
Overnight soaked black lentil, rajma, tempered with cumin, fresh garlic finished with white butter.

Gucchi Pulao
Long grain rice muddled with Himalayan morels flavored with whole spices.

Breads
Stuffed kulcha, Roti, Naan, Laccha Paratha.

Here, the spicy Pindi Chholey and Dal Shakahari along with Laccha Paratha is something I would recommend as ‘not-to-be-missed’.

No royal Indian meal is complete without desserts and Shakahari takes this to the next level. Shakahari provides a glimpse of what the Indian royal families would traditionally indulge in by having a ‘Mishtaan Bhandar’, a room full of sweets and desserts instead of a standard, run-of-a-mill dessert counter. Shakahari walks the talk by offering traditional Indian sweets instead of desserts and verities of Rajashthani Kulfi with a host of toppings instead of ice-creams.

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The dessert spread included Mango Rabadi, Malai Kulfi, Kesar Pista Kulfi, Moong Dal Halwa, Gulab Jamun, Lychee Gulla, Kaju Pista Roll, Moti Chor Ladoo, Kadambari, Badambhog and Ghewar.

Maharaj Jai Kishen
Maharaj Jai Kishen (PC: JW Marriott)

We also got an opportunity to interact with Maharaj Jai Kishen who carries over 4 decades of experience in the kitchen and is the energy behind crafting the new royal avatar of Shakahari.

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Chef’s Table in a private area

 

While we traveled from just Mumbai to Pune, Shakahari indeed embarked us on a much longer royal culinary journey by the overwhelming hospitality and authentic Indian cuisines inspired from princely provinces.

Shakahari - JW Marriott Pune Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

P.S. We were invited by JW Marriott, Pune to for #RoyalIndianExperience @ Shakahari.


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Indian Curry @ Tansha Comfort Regency, Vadodara

 A family gathering of around 15 people and an obvious and annoying question, where to go for dinner so that everyone gets some or other thing of their liking?

Long discussion and Indian Curry @ Hotel Tansha Comfort Regency came out as a choice. It was Sunday evening and we called to book a table only to discover that they don’t take bookings. Reaching early helped secure one as the restaurant got fully occupied by 8 PM.

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Our order consisted Hot and Sour and Almond Broccoli soups, Bruschetta, Jalapeno Cheese Nuggets, French Fries, Roasted Papad and Palak Makai Lahori Seekh Kabab to start with. In the main course, we stuck to north Indian and tried Paneer Do Pyaza and Veg Deewani Handi.

Almost everything in food was up to the mark and didn’t disappoint us.

With average service, decent interiors and good food, this surely secures a backup option berth.


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Indian Curry Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Vishal Sandwich – The birth place of Samosa Sandwich in Vadodara

It wouldn’t be wrong to say that Vishal Sandwich is a birth place of Samosa Sandwich in the city of Vadodara.

Until 10 months ago, it was operated as a road since stall beside Baroda High School. Now it has moved to a new place in Alkapuri.

The menu is limited with around 20 different options of sandwiches grouped in Samosa Sandwiches and Grilled Sandwiches.

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I usually give grilled sandwiches a miss for the sake of Samosa Sandwiches. They are simple yet super tasty. A piece of small Samosa sandwiched between 2 slices of bread with other condiments. There are cheese variants too for almost all the sandwich varieties.

Just one Samosa Sandwich will never be enough. An order of Samosa plate usually follows Samoas Sandwich to complement the dish.

Indeed, one of the iconic street food joint in Vadodara.


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Vishal Sandwich Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

A Vegetarian Heaven – Cream Centre, R-City, Mumbai

When it comes to vegetarian food, especially for pure vegetarians like me, this place is a no-brainer. You get all the choices, ranging from Indian, Italian, Mexican, under one roof. Order anything from the menu and there are small (if at all) chances of disappointment.

The ambiance is much better and elegant than the Chowpaty outlet (the first and 57 years old iconic eatery) and so is the service.

One can’t miss to afford some of their signature dishes like The Big Nachos and Chana Bhatura.

The Big Nachos
The Big Nachos

 

World's Best Nachos
World’s Best Nachos

With towering nachos and baked beans, veggies and oozing cheese as a base, this is undoubtedly one of the best nachos you get in Mumbai. The same can’t be said for their World’s Best Nachos. With just Nachos and loads of oozing cheese, it is a lighter variant of The Big Nachos.

Chana Bhatura
Chana Bhatura

Chana accompanied by almost a football size fluffy bhatura is perhaps their best dish.

Karari Khari - Three Khari
Karari Khari – Three Khari

Another not to be missed items is Karari Khari. We tried the Three Khari variant which has 3 different toppings. Corn Nachos Jalapeno, Chili Cheese Subz and Paneer Tikka Masala. All were worth giving a try.

Herbed Chili Cheese Toast
Herbed Chili Cheese Toast
Peach Iced Tea
Peach Iced Tea

Iced Teas are inconsistent. Sometimes truly refreshing and sometimes loaded with sugar syrup.

Mexican Fajita Sizzler
Mexican Fajita Sizzler

Mexican Fajita Sizzler was a platter full of flavors that included of fresh vegetables, corn sauteed in Mexican herbed tomato sauce, buttered coriander rice, beans, potato chips, tortilla chips and corn cheese balls.

Grill and Herb Pizza was better than the ‘delivery expert’s’ pizza as you do not end up chewing the dough.

The food here may not rate a perfect 10 on authenticity but as long as taste on Indian palate is concerned, it indeed rates very high along with unmatched value for money.

Don’t Miss: The Big Nachos, Chana Bhatura, Karari Khari


Rooftop Experience Par Excellence – 1 Above, Lower Parel, Mumbai

Indeed a thoughtful name for the newly opened rooftop bar and sheesha lounge. It’s not just the place, the service and food make it one above.

We were invited for a pre-launch event 2 days before the place throws open for public. Lighted walkway enticed to think about how the place would be which left me spellbound once I entered. As they were yet to open, I could easily see a couple of last moment fixes being done. This is rather expected specifically because I was on time for the launch event. The open-air ambiance with music and lights was true to the mood.

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What was not expected was almost flawless service, worthy of appreciation for an yet to open pure vegetarian place. The menu was not disclosed and we were served chef’s selection in food.

Drinks had choices and I started with Whiskey Sour which turned out to be a good mix to start with. Selected my all-time favorite LIIT next. The standard mix of 5 whites and cola combined with cool January breeze on the rooftop made a potent combination.

Kheema Pav

Kheema Pav

Food started rolling with Kheema Pav, a slider bun filled with soya stuffing was the star dish of the day.

Nachos with 4 dips
Nachos with 4 dips

Nachos were served with 4 dips. Crisp and thick, capable enough to put mass marketed verities to shame.

Bruschetta Platter
Bruschetta Platter

The Bruschetta Platter had 3 topping varieties and all were great in taste.

Sushi Platter
Sushi Platter

The well-arranged and photogenic Sushi Platter had 2 varieties, avocado and cream cheese sushi and avocado, tempura and eggplant sushi. I literally couldn’t stop eating while trying them with soy sauce, wasabi and ginger slices.

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The oval shaped thin crust pizza served with capers as sides would have tasted better if served hot. The coldness dampened the flavor which otherwise would have been mouth-watering.

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The last dish was perhaps the least liked. A platter Corn Seekh Kabab, Paneer Tikka, Tandoori Aalo stuffed with chili and mix veg, Brocolli in mustard mayo. Not that it was not flavorful, perhaps the other dishes were better than it.

Visit for an excellent ambiance combined with equally great vegetarian food and good service. Wish they continue doing the same to stay 1 above all.


Village, R-City, Ghatkopar(W), Mumbai

What can be a better place for large family gathering than this one!

You are not confined to table and chair and can roam around, have food like a buffet or just sit and enjoy your food.

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Another benefit is you don’t have to worry about what to order. Options are a plenty and most likely will include one or other thing which is liked by everyone in the group.

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Food included dal-wada, sev-puri, pani-puri, khaman and veg. crispy in starters. In mains there were Dosas, Pav-bhaji, dal-pakavan, various sabji, pipping hot rotis, rotlas, pulav, khichdi to name a few in Indian variant including a couple of Indianised Chinese items like noodles and veg Manchurian gravy .

They also have performances where they try to include guests and eventually ends up with Rajasthani folk dances, Gujarati Garba, Bhangra and DJ numbers.

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Ambiance tries to imitate a typical village like environment. Describing will not be enough so let pictures do its work.

Overall a good place with average to above average food, lots of choices and great for a large group.