Farid-band

Eat, Pray, and Love the Kababs at Farid

 

farid seekh kabab

EAT, PRAY, AND LOVE THE KABABS AT FARID

Farid Seekh Kabab Centre at Jogeshwari has just one thing on the menu — a seekh kabab/paratha combo. The lack of variety isn’t a deterrent. Farid’s seekh kababs are mouthwatering, it’s parathas soft and flaky, and the restaurant is always packed.

Farid Seekh Kabab, Shop No. 13 Kismat Compound, Jogeshwari (w), Mumbai 400 102.

READ MRIGANK WARRIER'S STORY

Farid Seekh Kabab Centre is the budget gourmand’s mecca, housed in what must once have been a public toilet for giants: serial rectangular cubicles pretending to be dining halls, walls tiled up to ye high, a sloping tin roof, and a floor you shouldn’t inspect too closely.

When a band of kabab-laden stomachs staggers out, we are directed to their recently vacated table with a polite ‘Aap log baith sakte hain’. The aroma of searing meat is appetiser enough, and ambient music is provided by the chomps of our fellow diners. At Farid, conversation is superfluous and interferes with one’s appreciation of the only item on the non-existent menu — seekh kabab.

Its arrival is preceded by a procession of accompaniments: quartered lemons, raw onion rings soaked in a spicy green chutney, and more than enough sprigs of fresh mint to spark fears of genocide in the pudina community. The paranthas follow, and are not, much to my relief, the usual leathery, rubbery sheepskins that require iron claws for consumption. They are fresh off the griddle, soft and flaking under my fingers. Bringing up the rear are two seekh kababs, which are slid off a greasy plate onto our soon-to-be greasy plates. ‘Outside food not allowed’, warns a sign on the wall; in a moment, we will find out why every heretic sneaking in manna not produced in the heaven of Farid should be taken outside, set in stocks and displayed to the jeering public of Behram Baug, who may mete out corporal punishment by allowing him to only sniff, but not devour the kababs, as we proceed to do.

First, wring the juice out of a lemon to anoint a tukda of kabab. Tear off a piece of parantha to garb its mortal shell. Line the piece with a few pudina leaves; let an onion ring or two hang rakishly out. Swaddle the kabab in these humble robes, and let it pass through the pearly gates of your mouth.

And from your lips it’ll draw the Hallelujah.

Feature photograph copyright Andrey Starostin – stock.adobe.com

 

 
Miss-T

Mixology, Mystery, and Martinis at Miss T

 

miss t colaba

MIXOLOGY, MYSTERY, AND MARTINIS AT MISS T

Miss T is seductive, intoxicating, and downright mesmerising. Housed in a beautiful bungalow on a quiet street in Colaba, the restaurant boasts an innovative Asian menu and creative cocktails that showcase fresh ingredients and premium spirits. The ambience is chic, and the vibe is sexy, perfect for #datenight with bae.

Miss T, 4, Mandlik Road, Apollo Bandar, Colaba, Mumbai 400 001. Phone: 022 2280 1144/022 2280 115

READ KRUTI DALAL'S STORY

The setting is perfect. We’re in the ‘secret room’, tucked away on the first floor of Miss T. The glimmer from the tea lights bounces off the clear liquid in my mini goblet and multiplies many times over as it reflects on the mirrored walls. The room smells of spiced gin and orange. The conversation swirls around alcohol, entrepreneurs, and puppies.

The drink is the “greatest in the world”, a Gibson Martini prepared by the two acclaimed mixologists sitting across the table. I nurse my cocktail, well aware I look less Brosnan and more Bullock from The Net. I’m wondering if I need to drain my glass quickly before I can get to the pickled onion when Dimi and Meagan* tell me that that is, in fact, the correct way to drink a martini; while it’s still cold.

I don’t need to be told twice.

I bid adieu to the master mixologists and get ready to explore other facets of the mysterious Miss T. Gliding down the stairs, feeling more Brosnan than before, I let the sequinned storks guide me to the ground floor.

Once below, I gravitate towards the lit T-shaped community bar, where Feruzan and Jeremy* hold fort on either side. I join the captivated cluster and watch Jeremy prepare my second drink of the night, a herbaceous gin tipple with a refreshing touch of cucumber, kaffir, and lime. As he talks about the balance of flavours, I notice that the fragrant mixture that fills the glass is just the right quantity. Jeremy uses a tweezer to place a sprig of green aniseed and an edible garnish with a tiger print on the thin layer of foam. This astute attention to detail is the common thread that binds different aspects of Miss T.

The chic interiors evoke a sense of intimacy and set the mood for a sophisticated evening. The spectacular skylight, which streams in diffused light through the leaves during the day, opens out to glowing Chinese lanterns at night. The cosy booths near the entrance can be used as a waiting area but seem ideal for coy conversations and flirtatious knee-touching. The soft lighting, metallic accents, and flickering tea lights at every table create an atmosphere that’s equal parts playful and provocative.

The kitchen runs like clockwork under the watchful eyes of Chef Nikhil, with each plate being executed to perfection. Locally sourced ingredients are used to create Asian dishes with an innovative twist. The crunch of the vegetables in the Vietnamese rice rolls can be heard over the hum of candid conversations. The black sesame ice cream slices through the citrusy flavour of the yuzu tart. I couldn’t possibly eat any more, but my eyes still rove lasciviously over culinary assortments as I walk past a row of occupied booths and tables on my way back to the buzzing bar.

I know it’s the beginning of the end of the night. But it’s also the beginning of a potential long-lasting love affair, one that grows more intense over time and many handcrafted cocktails.

I like Miss T. I think we’ll be seeing a lot of each other.

*Dimi Lezinska is the Beverage Manager at KOKO. Meagan Ashley is a renowned New York-based mixologist. Feruzan B is an acclaimed mixologist and the brand ambassador for Stranger & Sons. All three were present at Miss T for a special event. Jeremy Buck, the Beverage Director at Miss T, leads the team behind the bar and is responsible for creating the unique cocktail menu.

Feature photograph courtesy Miss T

 

 
The-Quarter-band

Live A Little At The Quarter

 

the quarter royal opera house mumbai

LIVE A LITTLE AT THE QUARTER

The Quarter at Royal Opera House is divided into four distinct sections – an al fresco restaurant, an elegant bar, an all-day café, and a live performance space. The menu is mostly Italian and Mediterranean, and the bar serves a host of signature cocktails made with fresh ingredients. Carefully curated nightly gigs include rock bands, jazz legends, and live acts from across the world.

The Quarter, Mathew Road, Royal Opera House, Girgaon, Mumbai 400 004. Phone: 083291 10638

READ KRUTI DALAL'S STORY

On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair

I walk briskly past shuttered shops, away from the railway tracks. The road is deserted, dotted only by strays and the occasional scooter. But up ahead in the distance, I see the shimmering vestiges of an era gone by. I turn left and step through the gates of the splendid Royal Opera House.

There were voices down the corridor

Classic chandeliers beckon through the glass, enticing aromas tantalise my nostrils, but I’m already swaying in anticipation of the music. As I wait behind a renowned plastic surgeon and his patient wife to get my pulse point branded for the night, I hear soft strains, melodic murmurs, and then the opening riff of “Mustang Sally” roaring down the corridor. I’m in for a ride.

Such a lovely place (such a lovely place)

I waltz back into the 1950s. Plum-coloured velvet chairs, plush couches, square table tops, chic candle holders, mirrored walls – all that’s missing is Duke Ellington on a vintage piano. But all that jazz doesn’t matter tonight. All eyes are fixed on the elderly gentleman on stage as he speaks tentatively into the mic. It’s working, we say. Then I’ll begin, he says.

Some dance to remember, some dance to forget

The next few hours are a blur of blow-dried hair, pearl necklaces, and floral blouses. A Bejan Daruwalla lookalike in a Hawaiian shirt twirls his wife in the narrow space between tables. A saree-clad, silver-haired lady jives with her grandson up front. The trio of chorus singers moves in unison, swaying their hips in time with the maracas and tambourine. I feel like I’ve tripped into a gymkhana soiree on steroids.

Mirrors on the ceiling, pink champagne on ice  

The high doesn’t wear off as the night veers on, the impact of the music and ambience compounded by the potent tipples. My chilled Gateway draught gives way to a herbaceous Quarter G&T before I draw the drinking curtains with a punchy Negroni Frappe. I haven’t even looked at the extensive wine list. I know I have to come back.

You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave

The lead singer belts out Folsom Blues in a faux baritone. Almost-Mr. Daruwalla mops his head and takes a sip of his whiskey. The ladies take a breather before the next dance number. It’s late, and I have a long way to go. I move towards the back of the room to return my glass, but I’m intercepted by an acquaintance who stares at me in disbelief. “It’s only a quarter past 11,” he says. “You can’t leave.”

I only protest once. Then I accept my Old Fashioned and retreat to the shadows to watch Almost-Mr. Daruwalla strut his stuff, patting myself on the back for this risky Friday night move.

What a nice surprise.

Feature photograph courtesy The Quarter

 

 
Seefah-band

Savour Sublime Asian Flavours at Seefah

 

SAVOUR SUBLIME ASIAN FLAVOURS AT SEEFAH

For erstwhile fans of The Blue who began to notice that something was missing from the food (and from the folk in the kitchen area) and were beginning to mildly panic, 2019 brings excellent news. After the successful launch of Soi69, Chefs Karan and Seefah’s little jewel in Breach Candy, the couple have, without any fanfare, opened a new eponymous space on Hill Road. It’s called Seefah and it is wonderful!

Seefah, 3rd Floor, Khan House, Next Time Square, Hill Road, Bandra (w), Mumbai 400 050. Phone: 089288 95952/089288 88710

READ GENESIA ALVES'S STORY

Important things first.

The menu at Seefah features almost* every single one of your absolute favourite things at The Blue. As a recap, the focus is very much on Thai and Japanese cuisine with crowd pleasers and palate teasers.

The papaya salad, fried chicken, sushi, and sashimi (the tobikko – the roe’s tiny, briny, orange orbs with their firm pop) are all still sublime. That seasonal mango salad, with or without the crisp squid, has taken permanent residence on the menu. That green Thai curry is as aromatic and complex, and the steamed fish in its piquant, citrusy, sinus-blasting glory is even more perfect that before.

And now comes the better news.

The restaurant, on the third floor above the McDonald’s (and the inexplicably popular Kaitlyn’s Beer Garden) is large and can accommodate 50 covers as opposed to The Blue’s mere, table-hustling 20.

Seefah_004

There is a little terrace that the place overlooks suffusing the interiors with light at lunch time and with a rare (for Bombay) sense of space at dinner. The interiors are beautiful and unpretentious; blue walls with a few cherry blossom sprigs painted here and there, furniture and décor in cane, wood and velvet, tables for four set up around the large dining room, and an island of high-bar chairs and an elevated table in the centre for larger groups or many individuals.

Chef Seefah says the kitchen is much, much bigger than the one at The Blue, and it features gas cooking rather than induction, which she says will only improve the deep flavours of what they serve. (I personally cannot imagine how it could be better, but I take her word for it.)

Those familiar with The Blue will also be delighted by the familiar faces at Seefah, because almost all her staff came to work with her at the new venture.

Seefah_003

Children are allowed in the evenings as well, because the chef says she would like to watch her customers enjoy their food with their entire families.

In the few days since she opened, Chef Seefah herself has been walking to say hello from table to table and smiling at those who are thrilled to have finally found her again after she ‘disappeared’. “I wanted to do it quietly and properly,” she says, “and make sure everything was perfect before we started telling people.” Her generosity and sweetness seem to suffuse the space with a warmth that is as authentic and addictive as her flavours.

And people are talking.

Seefah_002

Just via word of mouth, all the tables are full on a Friday night, four days since they opened their doors. This is fine for fans of Seefah. We know good things come to those who wait.

*Seefah the restaurant has replaced the pork dishes with other meats in acquiescence to the landlord’s religious dietary rules.

(It’s a New Bandra thing.)

Photographs courtesy Seefah

 
Crawford-Market-Popcorn-band

Pop by Crawford Market for A-maize-ing Popcorn

 

popcorn crawford market

POP BY CRAWFORD MARKET FOR A-MAIZE-ING POPCORN

Sour cream and onion, Manchurian, peri peri, and more – the humble butter popcorn gets an exciting makeover at Mr. Vinay Thari Jayswal’s stall in Crawford Market. 

Vicky’s Popcorn, Near Dharamjyot Electricals, 79, Kerawala Mansion, Mangaldas Road, Lohar Chawl, Kalbadevi, Mumbai 400 002

READ SIMRAN AHUJA'S STORY

I was in the middle of my usual 5 p.m. hunger pangs when my colleague offered me her popcorn. "Try it,” she said, “it's sour cream and onion flavoured." Two minutes later, my nose was dusted with the seasoning as she tried to pry the packet away from me. 

The source of this magical snack was Mr. Vinay Thari Jayswal’s 40-year-old stall in Crawford Market (located at the beginning of the lane next to Bata). Of course, I visit for myself. The first thing that catches my eye is the signboard on his cart – Vicky's Popcorn and Yeh cheez badi hain mast mast (10 points for the Bollywood cheesiness). Displayed below that is the array of flavours on offer: caramel, cheese, sour cream and onion, chilli cheese, chilli tomato, Manchurian, Szechuan, and chatpata. 

Since cheese and caramel popcorn are longer a novelty, I go with three others: sour cream and onion, Manchurian, and peri peri. He promptly scoops plain popcorn into a transparent plastic bag, sprinkles in a generous serving of the flavoured seasoning, and shakes it all together into utterly, butterly deliciousness. Oh, and each of the variants costs only 30 rupees. When I ask Mr. Jayswal which is his favourite flavour, he smiles. No answer. They’re all unique, he tells me.

Well, that settles it. If he can't pick, why should you?

Feature photograph copyright Brent Hofacker  – stock.adobe.com

 

 
Dolcemi-band

Dolcemi Delivers Authentic Italian Confectionary

 

dolcemi italian sweets

DOLCEMI DELIVERS AUTHENTIC ITALIAN CONFECTIONERY

Dolcemi, a dessert kitchen in Bandra, is the brainchild of an Italian jewellery designer and Indian entrepreneur. Confections such as tiramisu, biscotti, semifroddo, gelato, mousse, and more can be picked up from their base or delivered to your doorstep via delivery apps. Orders have to be placed before 2 p.m. on the previous day.

Phone: +91 90290 17000 (from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday)

READ KRUTI DALAL'S STORY

Everybody knows that dolce means sweet in Italian and that Anita Ekberg was really living the good life when she waded into that Roman fountain in her legendary black dress. But dolce is also an Italian musical term – an indication to play an instrument in a tender, adoring manner; to play a chord sweetly, with a light touch. That is what Dolcemi’s tiramisu does – it caresses your palate gently, the subtle sweetness melting on your tongue. The coffee liqueur diffuses into your throat, leaving behind a warm glow instead of the familiar burning sensation. You have to close your eyes and mouth to hold on to the feeling of being in sunny Sicily before it evaporates.

The pastina de mandorla elicits a similar reaction, accompanied by a deep, content sigh possible only in the absence of guilt. The small almond biscuits – crispy on the outside with a condensed centre – are dairy-free and gluten-free. For those who crave all year for marzipan sweets, Dolcemi’s soft dough pastry is Christmas come early.

Chocolate lovers have a long list of unusual suspects to choose from, but one item stands out. The chocolate salami may sound suspicious to vegetarians, but what looks like black pudding is a log of semi-frozen dark chocolate dotted with tiny pieces of biscotti. The specks, although substantial, aren’t quite enough to grasp the incredible nature of the Italian classic.

Luckily, Dolcemi offers 100gm biscotti packets and four tempting options, including the newly introduced walnut and gianduja.

Just scanning the luscious menu is enough to cause acute cravings and intense confusion at the same time. What’s certain, however, is that to live the good life in Mumbai, you need a certain amount of foresight and Dolcemi on your speed dial. Order early, then sit back to dream about an Italian summer. All dolce things are worth waiting for.

Feature photograph courtesy Dolcemi

 

 
Gaylord-band

Give Thanks For Gaylord Bakery

 

gaylord bakery

GIVE THANKS FOR GAYLORD BAKERY

Gaylord is an iconic restaurant at Churchgate that has a bakery attached to it. It serves a wide range of breads and savoury baked goods such as pizza and quiche, as well as cakes, pastries, and pies. It’s apple pie, in particular, is delicious.

Gaylord, Mayfair Building, Veer Nariman Road, Churchgate, Mumbai 400 020. Phone: 2282 125

READ MRIGANK WARRIER'S STORY

First, let me clarify that I have never entered Gaylord the restaurant, just three steps beyond your destination; for years, Gaylord the bakery has held my troth.

Walk in and take a deep breath. Let the food air in, and the (dieting) fad air out. Admire the display of sugar’s most magnificent heirs and use your handkerchief to mop the corners of your slavering mouth.

If you don’t like sweets, focus all your energies on living a good and pious life henceforth and hope to be reborn as someone who does. To help you bear the cross of your dessert-less existence, you are permitted to select a quiche. The quiche is good.

But if you are one of the gentlefolk who has sweet teeth that will one day make way for sweet dentures, ask for a slice of apple pie. Gaylord giveth with both hands: it offers a sticky, squelchy, open pie as well as one endowed with cashews and cinnamon, protected by a blanket of crumbly pastry. Know that I will judge you according to your choice; there is only one correct option*.

State your selection to one of the no-nonsense cashiers who roll their eyes when a customer has too many questions or takes too long to decide. These men (who get to inhale whiffs of pie all day) will ask you life’s two most important questions: “Having it here? Heat it up?”

Collect your warm slice of heaven and toddle over to the seating area where weighty, carved stone chairs dare you to drag one of them back and sit at the marble-topped table.

Plunge spoon into pie. Lift spoon to mouth. Goodbye.

*The correct option is, buy one to eat, pack one for home. Nothing less will do.

 

 
Beer-Guide-band

The Craft Brew Guide to Mumbai

craft beer mumbai
 

THE CRAFT BREW GUIDE TO MUMBAI

WORDS BY KASTURI GADGE

Mumbai has hopped on the craft beer bandwagon, and we think a pitcher is worth a thousand words.

Gateway Taproom

First they created a fan following in the city. Then the brand opened their standalone taproom in Bandra in 2017. It has a wide selection of beers, relaxed décor, and a happy vibe. While there’s always a limited edition beer to sample, regulars swear by the delightful White Zen and the hoppy, dark. A prime location and affordable menu makes finding a table here after work can be difficult, so head early to grab a spot.

Gateway Taproom, BKC, Unit no. 3, Ground Floor, Jet Airways Godrej BKC Building, G Block, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai 400 051. Phone: 081045 90734.

Verbena Brewpub and SkyGarden

It’s been a while, but this Kamala Mills establishment finally has its brewery up and running. The concise craft beer menu features a basic German recipe along with a refreshing Hefeweizen. What stands out, though, are the Cider and the Jagermeister beer (it isn’t a cocktail; the crafty brewers have managed to develop a powerful flavour profile, just like that of the liquor). A chilled pint in a beautiful rooftop garden is a rare treat in the city, so cheers to that.

Verbena Brewpub and SkyGarden, 4th Floor, Trade View Building, Kamala Mills Compound, Lower Parel (w), Mumbai 400 013. Phone: 098206 95034.

Toit Brewery

When the iconic Blue Frog closed, this Bangalore import set up shop in its stead and had to navigate massive expectations from the locals. It managed to exceed them all with its upbeat vibe, comfort food, and heady brews. The beer menu is identical to the Bangalore outpost, including the seasonal beers. From a crisp Basmati bond to a hoppy pale ale, a refreshing witbier to a creamy stout, the menu has it all. Added bonus: they have a pet-friendly section too.

Toit Brewery, Mathuradas Mill Compound, Lower Parel (w), Mumbai 400 013. Phone: 093245 55223.

Crafters Tap House

The newest member of the craft beer crew, Crafters Tap House is tucked away on the second floor of Powai’s Haiko Mall. The large space, with its stripped-down vibe, is refreshing and unpretentious. The beers on offer include a Pilsner, the easy-going Hefeweizen, and the Belgian Wit along with darker beers like a stout and a dark pilsner. Apart from the beers, there is also a fine selection of Indian spirits worth trying.

Crafters Tap House, Level 01, Haiko Mall, Central Avenue, Hiranandani Gardens, Powai Mumbai 400 076. Phone: 080078 85674.

The Beer Café

This bar chain has a menu featuring handpicked brands from all over the world. If you’re lucky, you might find some rare ones. Apart from global brands, they also offer local craft beers on tap. The bright yellow décor is youthful and quirky and the place has a fun vibe.

The Beer Café has multiple outlets at Churchgate, Chakala, Thane, Mulund, Andheri, Mahim, Powai, and Lower Parel. Check the website for details.

The Irish House

Usually heaving with a younger crowd, The Irish House has ‘Irish style’ décor and upbeat music. Their newest space at BKC has a little garden and a wood-fire oven. The menu has a few additions as well. Offering craft beers on tap (including brews from The White Owl, Drifter, Independence, and Erdinger), they also offer international beers presented by brew – lagers, ales, stouts, ciders or wheat.

The Irish House has multiple outlets at BKC, Fort, Malad, Thane, Kurla, Lower Parel, and Bandra. Check the website for details.

Effingut

Another one of the Pune microbreweries that made their way to Mumbai, Effingut found a home in one of the most iconic buildings in Colaba. The house brews lean towards the dark side – a Dunkleweizen, Indian Brown Ale, Citrus Burst IPA – but there’re also a couple of light-bodied beers like Hefeweizen and Kolsch. The junk-meets-funk interiors are extremely Instagram-friendly too.

Effingut, Dhanraj Mahal, Colaba, Mumbai 400 005. Phone: 086574 40661.

The British Brewing Co.

Straight from Hampstead, London, The British Brewing Company is a classic Brit  watering hole. The menu offers a wide selection of beers from both domestic and international brands. For craft beer lovers, fine beers from Gateway Brewing Company and The White Owl are on offer. Last year they also collaborated with the Gateway Brewing Company to make a special brew for the brand in India.

The British Brewing Co. has multiple outlets at Vashi, Lower Parel, Marol, Dombivali. Check the website for details.

Royal Oak Brewery

A new addition to Navi Mumbai nightlife is the Royal Oak Brewery. The American diner décor and rock music feel familiar and fun, and their in-house brews can be ordered in up to five-litre barrel size servings! The beers are a mix of German and Belgian origin along with ales like the Rice Blonde Ale, Pale Rye Ale, and Red Ale. If you’re feeling adventurous, try their fruit flavoured beer.

Royal Oak Brewery, Ground Floor, Satra Plaza, Sector 19, Palm Beach Road, Vashi, Navi Mumbai 400 703. Phone: 098331 06180

Kaitlyn's Beer Garden

Kaitlyn’s Beer Garden in Bandra tries to replicate Munich with faux grass and picnic benches. On tap they have a selection of local brews starting with an easy Hefeweizen, going on to a Pale Ale, and then a heady Stout. Kaitlyn’s Beer Garden also has a selection of domestic beers and a few popular international labels.

Kaitlyn’s Beer Garden, 202 Khan House, Hill Road, Bandra (w), Mumbai 400 050. Phone: 081042 94735

Feature photograph copyright Cherries - stock.adobe.com. All other photographs courtesy the restaurants.

 
Andheri-Breweries-band

Drink Up: A Beer Lover’s Guide To Andheri

 

DRINK UP: A BEER LOVER'S GUIDE TO ANDHERI

WORDS BY KASTURI GADGE

The rise of the microbreweries has been good news for connoisseurs of craft beer in the city. Taprooms have mushroomed across town over the last couple of years, but it’s safe to say the trend is especially tight in Andheri.  Here’s a list of locals you can hop on over to, say ‘Prost’ to a fresh brew, and skip wearing the lederhosen.

Woodside Inn

ARA1125

Woodside Inn opened its second outpost in Andheri way before the beer revolution hit the town, and its beer and burgers bring all the folks to the yard (They’re so good they have an annual beer and burger festival). A reliably good playlist, great crowd, and extensive beer list make this a great choice whether its Oktoberfest or not. On tap, they serve beers by Gateway Brewing Co, Great State Al,e and some local and international names. If you’re adventurous, keep an eye out for their beer infusion nights where they bring out the Randall for some extra fun with the brews.

Woodside Inn, Shop No. 11 & 12, Link Plaza Commercial Complex, Bhau Tatoba Toraskar Marg, Mhada Colony, Andheri (w), Mumbai 400 102. Phone: 022 2632 8963. A pint of beer: starting Rs. 200

Brewbot Eatery & Pub Brewery

Brewbot

We don’t know if bots actually brew the beer, but if they are, they’re doing a great job.  The pub imports all the ingredients from beer capitals like Germany, Belgium, and Australasia, and the beer on offer includes pints of German Kolsch, a French-style Apple Cider, a crowd-pleasing Hefeweizen, and a full-bodied British-style stout. Put that down on a table in a fun space that has natural light by day and plays with Edison lights at night and who wouldn’t say ‘ja’ to that?

Brewbot Eatery & Pub Brewery, G-01 & 101, Off New Link Rd, Andheri (w), Mumbai 400 053. Phone: 93260 72768. A pint of beer: starting Rs. 175

The Finch

Their tagline is ‘Rhythm and Brews’, and The Finch has been on every music lovers radar since they opened. Live music performances by performers – fresh, familiar, and sometimes famous – have always drawn the crowds in, but the latest draw is a microbrewery that’s been on the cards right from the start. Their craft beer menu includes a Belgian Wit, an Indian Pale Ale, a Nitro Stout, a Cider, and a Hefeweizen.

The Finch, Shah Industrial Estate, Opposite to Huntsman Building, Saki Vihar Road, Andheri (e), Mumbai 400 072. Phone: 080559 92993. A pint of beer: Starting Rs. 355

Independence Brewing Company (IBC)

Independence Brewing Co

On a more serious note, the beers on offer at IBC are seriously good. One of the country’s first craft beer companies, the Pune brewery came to Mumbai at the behest of city fans who sampled their beers and wanted more. It was initially available only in a couple of neighbourhood bars, and this is their first stand-alone taproom. Expert advice: one trip won’t be enough, as they have an elaborate selection that’s worth exploring. Start off with an easy going Belgian Wit, move on to a Pilsner, get a little heady with the Four Grain Saison, and call it a night with the creamy nitro stout Ixcacao.

Independence Brewing Company, 41, Citi Mall B, 001 & 101, Link Rd, Veera Desai Industrial Estate, Andheri (w), Mumbai 400 053. Phone: 022 2639 9065. A pint of beer: starting Rs. 175

The Stables

This equestrian-themed pub promises to add a little glam to the life of office goers in Andheri East with its luxe interiors and free popcorn. They don’t horse around with the beer menu either. An elaborate list of craft beers from the city are available here in 330ml to a 3-litre serving option, and they’re opening an in-house beer garden very soon too.

The Stables, The Peninsula Redpine, Near Airport Road Metro Station, Andheri (e), Marol Mumbai 400 069. Phone: 9820647072 Drinks for two: Starting Rs. 300

Doolally Taproom

Doolally- Belgian Witbier - India Pale Ale IPA- Pic Credit Kavita Narwani

Doolally, Pune’s first microbrewery, had become the Mumbaikar’s weekend pilgrimage, so news of them opening outposts in Mumbai was greeted with great cheer. On their opening night, the taps ran dry. Today, there’s a Doolally in pretty much every neighbourhood.  The brightly lit décor, comfort food, and good selection of board games cater to a troop of happy regulars. We recommend sampling  their Weitber, Pale Ale, or Oatmeal stout to begin.

Doolally, C18-21 Dalia Industrial Estate Near, Fun Republic Road, Off New Link Road, Veera Desai Industrial Estate, Andheri (w), Mumbai 400 053. Phone: 074001 71674. A pint of beer: starting Rs. 300

Sammy Sosa

When Sammy Sosa opened in 2008, a big draw was their beer menu that featured 45 international beers. This Mexican restaurant remains popular with families, and it’s bright, cheery, and a great place to clink glasses across generations. Their beer list will have something for everyone. There’s a tequila-flavoured Mexican beer Amigo, an intense one called Shepherds Neame, and the Leffe Fruitesse that is a hit with non-beer drinkers.

Sammy Sosa, Meera Tower, Shop No 18, Link Rd, Oshiwara, Andheri (w), Mumbai 400 058. Phone:  098336 66555 A pint of beer: starting Rs. 175

Barrel & Co

Barrel and co

Barrel & Co is only a year or so old and a little different from the rest. Launched by a bevy of Bollywood stars, it’s known for its happening parties and an aura of glitz. If you want a change from your usual, this is the place. Their in-house brewery offers a medium bodied Bavarian brew. They also have a selection of beer cocktails where mixologists use house beers and get adventurous with their recipes.

Barrel & Co, 2, Link Rd, Industrial Area, Andheri (w), Mumbai 400 047. Phone: 098838 34567. A pint of beer: starting Rs. 250

Feature photograph copyright puhhha - stock.adobe.com. All other photographs courtesy the restaurants.

 
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A Non-Vegetarian’s Guide To Restaurants In IC Colony

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SURF AND TURF IN BORIVALI (W): A NON-VEGETARIAN’S GUIDE TO RESTAURANTS IN IC COLONY

WORDS BY MAULIKA K. HEGDE

As a suburb, Borivali is generally regarded as a lollapalooza for all things vegetarian, including Mumbai’s best vada pav offering. Most eateries in Borivali are vegetarian friendly with immense potato-entialities and generous portions of paneer chunks. There is no skimping on grated cheese or melted cheese accompaniments.

However, for this ’90s kid whose family was accustomed to a healthy dose of kori rotti, restaurants which offered meat and seafood were held in high regard. Here’s a breakdown of Borivali’s establishments offering lip-smacking, maasahari chow.

For Sea Food

Over the years, several eateries have opened up in Borivali to cater to pescatarians. But two establishments stand out (mainly on account of the nostalgia factor and alcohol availability): Majestic NX and Silver Coin.

Located close to the junction between IC Colony and LIC Colony, Majestic NX is a casual dining restaurant with an outdoor seating area. Apart from their specialities in tandoor, Majestic delivers a sumptuous feast via the Seafood Platter, Jumbo Pomfret, and Fish Fry (Seer fish or Pomfret). With a fresh catch and flavours heavily influenced by Udupi-Mangalorean cuisine, the fare is rich and delectable. To help you make the crucial decision of what to eat, the floor manager (who usually takes the order) gives you a lowdown on what flavours and styles will mesh well with your selection: green masala, red masala, gassi, curry style etc.

Majestic NX, Rakesh Apartments, LIC Colony Road, Vallabh Nagar, Borivali (w), Mumbai 400 103. Phone: 022 2890 8667

 

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A 25-year-old establishment, Silver Coin still maintains the vestiges of the ’90s fine dining restaurants: a doorman and a motorised elephant for kids to sit on. It also has a website that allows you to make reservations and take a quick gander at its food, and it prides itself on its take on Mangalorean specialities. Multiple variations of sea food are available, predominantly in Oriental and Indian styles. From classics such as Meen Pulli munchi to the exquisite Lasooni Machi, trusted Fish Tikka, and Surmai Tawa Fry, Silver Coin has its patrons covered.

Silver Coin, RSK Apartment, Ground floor, Cross Road No 4, IC Colony, Borivali (w), Mumbai 400 103. Phone: 022 2895 1410

For Chicken and Mutton

When biryani is bae-ryani and money is dear, head to Lazeez for your mutton/chicken biryani fix. Smack in the middle of IC Colony, this hole-in-the-wall also has kebabs and tandoor items to offer. Lazeez boasts of succulent pieces of chicken/mutton (doused in a top-secret marinade) enmeshed in a mildly flavoured basmati rice with slow cooked chunks of potato, preferably eaten with their in-house raita. If your plan is a stay-in Saturday with friends, Lazeez can also help you out with a party order.

Lazeez, Shop No-5, Tone Compound, Near IC Church, IC Colony, Borivali West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400103; T: 022 2890 6116

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If you’re not too taken up with biryani, walk towards Holy Cross Road for your shawarma fill at Al Falah Shawarma. Apart from the usual Lebanese shawarmas, it also serves Mughlai and Mexican style shawarmas, open shawarmas, and salad shawarmas. While traditionalists might choose to chomp on the classic chicken/mutton shawarma, the masala-craving gourmand can sample the spicy chicken shawarma with a glass of 7Up or Coke.

Al Falah Shawarma, Eugenie Building Apt, Holy Cross Road, IC Colony, Borivali (w), Mumbai 400 103. Phone: 075068 72070

The Fusion Kitchen is a new kid on the block that shows a lot of promise. Couched in the niche of ‘fusion’ food, it matches step with its millennial clientele. The Chicken Paprika is a highly-recommended hot mess of chicken dunked in a cheesy paprika sauce with bell pepper rice and sautéed veggies for accompaniments. The portions are generous and the flavours are spot-on. The Poulet Farci Aux Champignons (beaten chicken breast with a filling and mushroom sauce) is also an excellent bet.

The Fusion Kitchen, Shop No. 1, Opp Veda Building, Off Link Road, Holy Cross Rd, IC Colony, Mumbai 400 103. Phone: 022 3383 6003

For Eggs

If you’re easily egg-cited, head to Café Blue Bliss for their Chorizo Omelette and Scrambled Masala Cheese. The former has generous amounts of the spicy sausage, onion, and bell peppers; the latter is not as spicy as the omelette, but it is tempered well. Bacon and sausages are also available as add-ons. To wash down your meal, the menu offers a vast array of coolers and chilled coffee. For those who are willing to sit down for a hearty meal, this café also offers Mangalore style Pork Bafat, Pork ribs, Sorpotel for mains and Gadbad for dessert.

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Café Blue Bliss, Shop No.2 & 4, Ektha Angan CHS, Holy Cross Road, IC Colony, Borivali (w), Mumbai 400 103. Phone: 077383 20678

If you fancy an anda bhurji or a Chilly Garlic French Toast, Café Jecevel is the place to be. The Local Scrambled (bhurji) is unpretentious with its substantial serving, and the Chilly Garlic French Toast is flavoursome. The Omelette is a big draw too. The big plus about this café is the value for money – large servings that come with unlimited ketchup and mayonnaise at no additional charge.

Café Jecevel, Shop No 1, Sabita Apartments, IC Colony, Borivali (w), Mumbai 400 103. Phone: 075068 19123