Breakfast @ Aromas Cafe, Powai, Mumbai

Even though I have visited Aromas Cafe several times as it is near to my office, it still remains the most under explored place for me.

From last two times Theobroma’s loss turned to be Aromas Cafe’s gain. It was Saturday morning and the indoor section was fully occupied.

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I tried Akuri on Toast, which is spicy egg bhurji(scrambled eggs) with toast. The toast was ordinary brown bread but the Akuri was good.
The Hash Brown turned out to be really nice. Crispy from outside and tender from inside without being greasy.
The Nutella Hazelnut Coffee was was a delight to multiple senses i.e sight, smell and taaste.
French Truffle slice was a gooey pastry with 55% dark chocolate.
Looking at the occupancy, I expected a little less attentiveness but food very well made up for that.
Around Rs. 700-800/- for the sumptuous breakfast deters it from being a regular affair.

Food: 4.5/5

Service: 4/5

Ambiance: 4/5

VFM: 4/5

 

Aromas Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


 

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Monsoon Menu @ Chaayos, Hiranandani Estate, Thane

When it comes to tea and related snacks, Chaayos requires no introduction. This is a month old outlet in the newly shaping-up The Walk @ Hiranandani Estate, Thane.

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We were invited by Chaayos to taste the Monsoon Special menu. Light rain, mild chilly breeze and a cup of Shahi or Pahadi Chai is an unbeatable combination.

Shahi Chai
Shahi Chai

Prefer Shahi Chai if you like milk based tea. Made with condensed milk, saffron and topped with lots of grated almonds brings a shahi touch to the humble tea.

Pahadi Chai
Pahadi Chai

Pahadi Chai is essentially Kashmiri Kahwa. Infused with lot of spices like cinnamon, cardamom, clove etc., this will sure bring warmth to your body.

Barish Wale Pakode 1
Barish Wale Pakode

No monsoon snack is complete without pakodas, a perfect pair with tea in the monsoon. Barish Wale Pakode was an assortment of Paneer, onion and Bhavnagri mirchi pakodas sprinkled with garlic and chili red powder.

Palak Patta Crisps 1
Palak Patta Crisps

Palak Patta Chips is an Indian answer to Nachos. Whole spinach leaves, battered, fried and topped with onions, jalapenos, sev and house chutney, made with tamarind, potatoes and tomatoes. The chips were crisp and had burst of flavors owing to the toppings.

Paneer Loaded Open Paratha
Paneer Loaded Open Paratha

Thin and crisp Paneer Laoded Open Paratha is a great tea time snack. Parathas were perfectly crisp and tasted great with topping of sauces and Paneer.

In desserts we tried Kulhad Wali Jalebi. The Chaayos special thin and crisp jalebi pieces served in kulhad were too tempting to resist. Chocolate Factory Cake too was equally tempting.

Food: 4.5/5

Service: N/A as this was an invite

Ambiance: 4/5

VFM: N/A as this was an invite

 Chaayos Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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Sprout Gourmet @ Powai, Mumbai

The name may be misleading to make one think it’s an outlet serving just salad and healthy options but they have a host of Indian and international cuisines on the menu.

I tried Falafel Wrap, Burmese Khow Suey, Creamy Pesto and Northern Veg.

Falafel Wrap was refined wheat flour based falafel accompanied with potato chips. While it was good in taste, I would have loved if it had an option of whole wheat wrap instead of the ‘maida’ wrap.

4. Burmese Khow Suey

Burmese Khow Suey bough mixed feelings. Perfectly cooked noodles were getting over-shadowed by vegetables. Also, the curry that came along had smaller portion than what Khow Suey should have. It tasted more like Thai curry as both has the same coconut base. Most surprising was presence of chill flakes. If I had to rate the dish without knowing it as Burmese Khow Suey, I would probably rate it good based on the taste but for Burmese Khow Suey, it was falling short in most fronts.

5. Creamy Pesto and Garlic Bread

Creamy Pesto were pasta in green pesto made with basil, spinach and broccoli. Again, good in taste but the garlic bread became a little soggy. I have observed most food deliveries falling short here, so that was expected.

6. Northern Veg

Northern Veg. is one of their signature dish. This Indian dish had rice, cottage cheese, masala bhindi and very tasteful daal-makhani. The masala bhindi had unusual amount of red-chilli so It was almost inedible for us. Instruct them to prepare with lesser chili and it should be good.

3. Packing

All dishes had their own pluses and minuses but overall they were satisfactory in taste and in portion which was meal like but the non plastic food containers impressed me the most.

Sprout Gourmet Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

P.S. The dishes were provided on the house for tasting and feedback.


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Ruha Kitchen & Bar, Powai, Mumbai

The first thing you notice after entering the place is the royal and nawabi interiors. Colorful and cozy enough to give you feeling of entering a royal dining room. While the interior is aesthetically great, the combination of western music and pan-Asian menu imposes an identity crisis to some extent.

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We opted for corporate lunch option and it had limited but sufficient varieties considering the price of Rs. 555/- all inclusive.

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Veg. Thyme Soup

The Veg. Thyme soup gave a great start to the lunch. I gave salads a miss and jumped directly to starters. The Shanghai Chilli Cottage Cheese was a standard paneer preparation with Chinese condiments. Tandoori Subz-E-Thal were marinated vegetables cooked tandoori style.

In mains, Daal Makhani and Subz Makhanwala were good in taste. Probably you can’t go wrong with this one of the most popular Indian dishes. Seemingly unappealing, I gave Four Seasons Vegetables in Hunan Sauce a miss.

Veg Hakka Noodles was again good in taste and so is Korean Fried Rice. Well, I can’t vouch for the authenticity of the Korean Fried Rice given that I was trying it for the first time.

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The desserts didn’t’ disappoint us either. Malai Firni was adequately sweet and had a good consistency. This was liked by most of us. Chocolate Brownies were bite sized and good in taste. Vanilla ice-cream and chocolate syrup would have enhanced the experience further.

The only let-down was the service. “Order for tandoori roti taking time in buffet” is a passe but they seem to have not overcome it. The basic sanity of the service fails here.

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Ambiance: 4.5/5
Service: 3.5/5
Food: 3.5/5
VFM: 3.5/5

Overall: 3.5/5

Ruha Kitchen & Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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Set Lunch @ Neel, Powai, Mumbai

Neel literally means indigo in English. While it’s English named twin serves Continental, Neel caters Indian cuisine.

This twin restaurant shares kitchen and is separated by a partition. Guests can sit on either of the section and can order food from either of the menus.

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When we visited for lunch on Friday afternoon, they assisted us to sit at Indigo Deli and order food from Neel menu as there was not enough quorum to make the section operational. Neel is about half the size of Indigo Deli and has similar spacious table arrangement with airy and well-lit ambiance. The decor is minimalistic yet wears a classy look.

Influenced by others experiences of a long time taken for a la carte, we decided to go for the set menu.

Tamatar Ka Rasam
Tamatar Ka Rasam

The South Indian style Tamatar Ka Rasam was the only choice in soup. Unlike the usual Rasam, the soup was so spicy that none of us could complete it.

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In starters, Hare Matar Ki Shami was the usual green peas patty. Malabari Paneer as the name suggests was cottage cheese prepared in Malabari spices. Bhavnagari Mirch ka Aloo were spicy baby potatoes in Bhavnagari chili. The humble potatoes cooked with right spices were liked by almost all.

In veg. mains, there were 3 dishes. Paneer Khatta Pyaaz, Uttari Lahsooni Saag and Dum Aloo Ka Khumb. Although good in taste, the Paneer Khatta Pyaz, made with paneer in sour onion and tomato gravy had no distinct flavor while the rest two carried it well. Uttari Lahsooni Saag was made from green leafy vegetables with chili and garlic. Usually, I don’t like green leafy vegetables but this one made a mark. Dum Allo Ka Kumbh, too was satisfactory in taste. The Lahsooni Dal Tadka and Green Peas Pulao was a perfect combination. The little dominant taste of burnt garlic in the Dal Tadka enhanced the taste greatly.

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The meal ended with Pineapple Ka Sheera and Mango Ice Cream. While Pineapple Ka Sheera was good, it was the Mango Ice Cream which left a lingering taste in the mouth.

Ambiance: 4/5
Service: 4/5
Food: 4/5
VFM: 4/5 (Rs. 600/- all inclusive, per person, for the set menu)

Overall: 4/5

Neel Indian Kitchen & Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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SodaBottleOpenerwala, Powai, Mumbai

Finally, Powai too gets its own bit of Irani Cafe legacy, albeit in a new avatar, with SBOWs 3rd outlet opening up replacing Pizza Hut, the auto rickshaw navigation landmark to enter Hiranandani.

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The interior largely resembles the BKC outlet and carry the charm of old world Irani cafes, chaotic, lively and elegant. It was almost 11 PM on Thursday late evening when we reached and people were still pouring in.

My friend wanted to try a something called ‘Bava Ji Ka Thullu’ but we got informed that it is available at BKC outlet and not at Powai. So he settled with Mumma Nu Double Dose and got served The Bumsuckerwala without even asking us as the base for Mumma Nu Double Dose was not available.

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The Bumsuckerwala
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Bunmaska
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Cheese Chili Pav
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Mushroom Cheese Khari
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Bharuchi Paneer Akuri
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Navsari Hot Sauce

In food, we started with Bunmaska and Chilli Cheese Pav and Cheese Mushroom Khari. Try the Navsari Hot Sauce if you feel adventurous. Not as hot as Tabasco but the initial sweetness is deceiving. In mains, we tried Bharuchi Paneer Akuri, a Parsi style Paneer Bhurji. Smooth and melt in the mouth Paneer with the right mix of spices makes this a must try for vegetarians.

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Lagan Nu Custard
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Parsi Dairy Kulfi
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Mawa Cake

Lagan Nu Custard was a pre-decided as I had never tried that. This baked dish will not disappoint if you like custard. The same goes with Parsi Dairy Kulfi. The Mawa Cake always sneaks-in the desserts order. Can’t avoid it!

I would appreciate if they improve a little on the service. Food never disappoints.

My experience of SBOW, BKC: Irani Cafe v2.0 – SodaBottleOpenerWala, BKC, Mumbai

SodaBottleOpenerWala Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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Mia Cucina, Powai, Mumbai

Most of our visits to Mia Cucina were impromptu except one which was the worst one. It was 30th December and we were informed that all the tables were occupied when we inquired about a table for 2. Their body language was enough to indicate that “you are just two and today we don’t care!” Even in general, I would appreciate the staff to be a little grateful.

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That was probably the worst part. Now, coming to the good part, the food. In my several visits, pizzas and desserts have never disappointed.

Breads
Freshly baked and hot bread are savory start to a meal
Bruschetta Bell Pepper
Cicchetti – Bruschetta Bell Pepper

During my recent visit, we tried, Cicchetti, a range of bite-sized snacks/appetizers famous in Venice, Italy. The Bruschetta Bell Peppers had bell peppers, tomatoes with chili mayo and balsamic vinegar which gave it a distinct taste.

Feta-E-Peperone

Feta-E-Peperone

Vegetarians have only a few options in pizza and having tried most of them, one thing is for sure, pizzas won’t disappoint. Pair it with a good wine like Grover Zampa La Reserve and it will leave you craving for more.

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Very few places get Tiramisu right and this is undoubtedly one of them. No further explanation needed!

Decadence Cake was a real surprise. A heap of whipped cream on top of a chocolate cake. The textured look completely contrasts the luscious smoothness of the dark chocolate.

A deadly duo for sinful indulgence!

This relatively small and rustic place may not deliver a complete package but food and ambiance make me keep going to the place.


Mia Cucina Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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