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.
We opted for corporate lunch option and it had limited but sufficient varieties considering the price of Rs. 555/- all inclusive.
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.
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.
Inspired from Ouzo, a Greek, anise-flavored alcoholic drink, Oozo Bar and Diner is the newest hangout place in Andheri (E) near Sakinaka. The place has dedicated sections for casual dining, lounge & bar and a rooftop lounge for sheesha.
This place is being set-up by none other than K. M. Saif. A renowned chef and consultant who has successfully set-up some of the great places in Mumbai and Pune like Fusion Kitchen, The Little Door, Flip Bar and Kitchen, Asanjo etc. to name a few.
Some of the best international dishes and finger food ranging from Indian, Mexican, Italian, Greek & Mediterranean, Korean etc. find their place in the menu. We tried some of them.
Yin Yang Martini: This non-alcoholic milk based, whipped cream and vanilla based drink is topped with shaved chocolate and M&Ms to resemble Yin Yang symbol. Prefer if you like milk and cream based drinks.
Watermelon Caipiroska: One can never go wrong with watermelon to beat the heat. A mix of muddled watermelon, lime, mint, topped with crushed ice and fresh watermelon juice.
Crazy Current: This seemingly simple black current crush and grape juice mix taste good when sipped with the white pepper rimmed on the cocktail glass.
Jalapeno Margarita: This is a twisted flavored spicy drink. Jalapeno, lime, and finely crushed ice.
Royal Saffron Nachos
Royal Saffron Nachos are saffron flavored nacho chips, topped with lip-smacking saffron cheese sauce & black olives. This is one of the signature dishes.
Korean Cheese Nachos are spinach flavored nachos topped with Gochujang(Korean hot pepper paste) spiced cheese sauce and loaded with chopped bell peppers, black olives, mozzarella, cheddar & parmesan cheese. Both the nachos are house made, thin and crisp and the accompanying sauces are something extraordinary.
Chipotle Chili and Chickpea Mini Cake
Chipotle Cheese Balls
Chipotle Chili and Chickpea Mini Cake are mini fried patties stuffed with chickpea and parmesan cheese. The accompanying chipotle mayo gives it the much needed spicy twist.
Chipotle Cheese Balls with fiery mayo is gooey cheese balls filled with mozzarella & cheddar cheese and is served with spicy mayo. The outer shell is crisp and inside there is a burst of flavors.
Romesco Potato Bites are bite-sized scooped baby potato with skin. The perfectly baked potato bites are stuffed with mixed veggies tossed in spicy romesco sauce and are topped with garlic mayo and chopped jalapeno.
Locro de Zapallo
The main course dishes we tried are a meal in itself. Locro de Zapallo is a Peruvian dish made from red pumpkin stew cooked with onion, garlic, potato, green peas, veg stock, yellow pepper paste, oregano, cream cheese served with parsley rice and oven roasted baby potatoes.
The vegetarian Bulgogi, as its name suggests, is a vegetarian variant of Korean dish, Bulgogi, which is primarily made from meat. Instead of meat, cottage cheese cubes, mushroom are cooked in soy sauce, sesame oil and gochujang(Korean hot pepper paste) and is served with coriander rice.
Paneer Shashlik Sizzler requires no introduction. Grilled Paneer with rice, fries, veggies in sweet and tangy shashlik sauce.
Chocochip Cookie Shake
Our meal ended with their signature shakes. Chocochip Cookie Shake is again a classic milkshake made with vanilla ice-cream, choco-chips, whipped cream and topped with ice-cream sandwich.
The calorie loaded Tiramisu Milkshake is a great blend of milk, white chocolate, strawberry crush, sponge cake, vanilla ice-cream and mascarpone cheese topped with vanilla ice cream, mascarpone cheese & sponge cake.
Forget about the workout you did for the week and gorge on these shakes. Have one of this and you will have to skip your meal for sure.
Vicinity to offices of Andheri and Powai combined with good ambiance and great food, this place is for people who work hard and party harder.
Service: N/A. This was an invite.
VFM: N/A. This was an invite.
P.S. – We were invited by Chef and Consultant K. M. Saif to try their menu.
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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
VFM: 4/5 (Rs. 600/- all inclusive, per person, for the set menu)
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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
That was probably the worst part. Now, coming to the good part, the food. In my several visits, pizzas and desserts have never disappointed.
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.
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.
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.
I would like to hear from you!
If you have any recommendation on something I should try during my next visit to Mia Cucina, do drop a comment below.
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Indian’s beloved and world’s most consumed beverage badly needed a refresh when the menu of every other food joint serves tens of verities of coffees and tea remains restricted to either, humble, regular tea or at most to a fancier sibling, Ice Tea. Chaayos appears to be an attempt to break this stereotype.
Our visit to the outlet in the morning was a side effect of the current demonetization drive by the government. It was all empty when we reached and we had the luxury to choose our seat. The interior surrounds you with tea. Canvases with tea memes, murals and décor related to tea knick-knacks relating to tea.
We started with Honey Ginger Lemon tea, Saunf Thandi Chai and Bun Maska. The Honey Ginger Lemon tea was piping hot and helped sooth my sore throat. Saunf cold tea too tested great with green fennel seed flavoring. Although a little different from our usual roadside one, the Bun Maska was a good accompaniment to the tea.
The Veg Cheese Max was bread, stuffed with a thick gravy of paneer and veggie mix. Good enough for trying once. The soft and light Banana Cake delighted us the most in food.
Chaayos may be an old wine in a new bottle but old wine is what you savor the most!
There is no dearth of North Indian food options in Powai and Hiranandani and neither there is a lack of food delivery options. But there are times when you want to ditch the Pizzas, Pastas and other fashion food and want to stick to the classic North Indian to tickle your spicy taste buds.
Curry Me Up is a delivery only kitchen, serving North Indian and Mughlai food. CMU started with the first outlet in Versova and have newly opened the second one in Chandivali. CMU also has an app to explore the menu and take orders.
The menu has extensive North Indian and Mughlai options largely consisting non-vegetarian varieties. For vegetarians, like me, the options are limited but complete.
My order for lunch included Achari Aloo, Kashmiri Mirch Ka Paneer Tikka, Mughlai Paratha, Whole Wheat Mirchi Paratha, Rumali Roti, Garlic Naan, Garlic Paneer Masala, Veg. Kolhapuri, Dal Makhani and Paneer Biryani. The delivery was on time and the packing was good and free from any spillage and mess.
Kashmiri Mirch Ka Paneer Tikka
Achari Aloo was spiced up boiled potatoes. Kashmiri Mirch Ka Paneer Tikka was Paneer and capsicums mixed in Kashmiri Mirch spices. The Paneer was tender fresh but the dish lacked an adequate amount of salt.
Garlic Paneer Masala
In the main course, all the different breads we tried were excellent especially the whole wheat Mirchi Paratha and Mughlai Paratha. Garlic Paneer Masala and Veg. Kolhapuri were right blend of vegetables and gravy with balanced spices.
With a generous amount of Paneer, the Biryani too was good. Though it was quite spicy for my taste.
Although we have enough North Indian options in the near vicinity, the specialized North Indian and Mughlai delivery only kitchen, Curry Me Up, is a great value for money option considering the food, delivery service and prices.
The lunch was offered by Curry Me Up to try their food from the newly opened Chandivali kitchen.
If you have a recommendation on something we should try from Curry Me Up, leave a comment below.