Nov 6 2016

1 Tablespoon Pizza Kitchen, Matunga (E)- Review

Roochster

1-tablespoon-1 I’d been craving pizza for some time and wished to go have some over the weekend; when I got a mail to try 1 Tablespoon, a pizza place. Ha! My prayers were answered! So, Karan and I decided to go to their Matunga outlet and treat ourselves to some really good pizza! Now when I say good, I mean good alright! Read on.

Food– One Tablespoon serves Italian food, mainly pizza and pasta. They also have paninis and some side dishes such as Garlic rolls, Hummus and Pita and coolers. Being a vegetarian only place, this might be a bit disheartening for the non-vegetarians, but I promise you even the Veg pizzas are brilliant! Here’s all the stuff we had:

Spaghetti Aglio Olio– Slightly dry and spicey, but tastewise it was perfect! We thought we’d just try it but wiped it clean because of how yummy it was.

1-tablespoon-pastaCiao Chili (Tomato sauce, cheese, Ricotta, Red Chilli) – My favourite from all the pizzas we tried. This was the first pizza we tried and everything from the bread to the sauce to the toppings was perfect. Karan preferred the Rosa Mexicana pizza though.

Rosa Mexicana (Mexican sauce, cheese, tomatoes, sweet corn, jalapenos, onions) – This was a fully loaded pizza with a Mexican twist. If you like your pizza loaded with toppings, you must have this one.

Mushroom Lovers (Tomato sauce, cheese, mushrooms, minced garlic) – I’m not a mushroom lover but Karan said it was pretty nice.

Quattro Formaggi (Tomato sauce, Mozzarella, Cheddar, Parmesan, Scamorza, Green onions, garlic) – The onions and garlic made a big difference to the regular super cheesy pizza. Try it!

Raspberry Iced Tea, Lemon Iced Tea, Orange Cooler (Tang)-All were too sweet and we had to ask them to add water and ice.

1-tablespoon-pizzasAmbience & Service – Located in Matunga East under a residential building, One Tablespoon is a small place with 3 to 4 tables to sit. A brick wall with a little window stands opposite the tables, adding a nice rustic feel to the restaurant. They deliver to nearby places and also have another outlet at Lower Parel, where they serve pizza by the slice and non veg food.  We were served well and so glad to have ordered all the right stuff.

Prices– As we were invited, our dinner was completely complimentary however, if you plan to go on your own too, everything you eat there is worth every penny. The pizzas range from Rs. 285-405 for a 11” pizza good for one person, the Aglio Olio pasta is for Rs. 275, Paninis are for Rs.195- 225. The coolers are for Rs. 75 each.

1-tablespoon-2Verdict– We’re definitely going to One Tablespoon again, next time to Lower Parel so Karan can try the non-vegetarian pizzas too. Love! Love! Love! Go try! NOW!

Rating– 4.5/5

 

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Jul 31 2016

Vedge, Andheri (W)- Review

Roochster

Vedge 6My recent visits to new restaurants proves one thing- all of them are trying to be ‘different’ and give customers something ‘new’ by experimenting with your basic dishes. With their new menu, Vedge too has gotten into that experimental space. I was invited along with some other bloggers from the Food Bloggers Association of India (FBAI) to try new items from their menu. Here’s what I thought of all that I tried.

Vedge 1Food– We had a set menu and could choose what we wanted from it. Let me tell you that it was a LOT of food as we ended up trying most of the dishes from the menu. I’m going to describe what I thought of all the stuff I tried in one- two lines each. All these dishes were well presented and looked delicious.

Vedge 2Pan Supari Martini (Masala, Betal leaf, apple juice)- A brilliant start to my evening, this drink is an absolute must have if you like paan!

Vedge 8Creamy Tomato, Basil & Parmesan soup- I am not a soup fan but this was a delicious soup! Thick, creamy and yum!

Wok Tossed potato, honey chilli sauce- This was the best starter we had! A winner for sure.

Sweet  corn & cheese ball bites with Fresh Herbed mayo- Unfortunately there was a small strand of hair as I cut through one of the crispy looking balls. A big turn off! However, I ignored that and tried another piece. Not bad at all!

Vedge Fully loaded Nachos- These were crispy, loaded with capsicum, cheese, sour cream, olives and tomato salsa. I wish the nacho chips were smaller though.

Chilli Bean Tacos- The filling was adequate but the taste was just ok.

Thai Corn fritters with sweet chilli sauce-This was my least favourite dish. There was too much corn and it was super spicey.

Vedge 4Jalapeno popper & Cream cheese pizza- This was probably the most pointless, bland pizza I’ve ever had! There was no sauce and it felt like I was eating bread and cheese.

Sabzi Galouti Kebab with Coriander & Mint chutney- This was better than I had expected. The kebabs were nice and soft and went well with the accompanying chutney.

Tandoori paneer tikka slider with cheddar cheese and Achari Mayo- The Achari mayo was the USP of this burger. A very interesting mix indeed! Try it.

Desi cheese korma with layered flaky Malabari paratha- Great texture of the paratha but it was so sweet! Since the Korma was also sweet, the combination just didn’t make sense. A spicy sabzi would probably taste better with it.

Vedge 3Thai Massaman curry, brown flavoured rice- The rice was great but the curry was too sweet for our liking.

Stir fry vegetables in hot chilli & basil sauce with Burnt garlic fried rice- I loved the fried rice even on its own! The stir fry veggies  gravy was nice and spicy and went very well with the rice.

Beet & Cheddar Risotto, Lemon, corn & Paprika Risotto- Both lacked the flavour, cheese and thick and sticky consistency one would expect to find in a Risotto.

Spicy Vanilla Chai shake- The combination is just bad! I had one sip and that was it.

Red Velvet cake with cream cheese frosting- I loved the outer layer but the inside was super sweet and just not that nice.

Vedge 5Magic Chocolate pot- Apart from the melting gimmick, the dessert has nothing to rave about. It only oozes sweetness, eventually overpowering the real taste of the ‘Magic pot’.

Chocolate Mud Pile- I liked that the cake, ice cream, chocolate sauce, powdered sugar, chocolate soil and drinking chocolate were arranged separately and the chef came and mixed it all up for us. I could do without the extra sugar and chocolate soil though.

Ambience– The restaurant has a contemporary + rustic vibe to it. A little bit of this and that. I loved the Moroccan tiles and the hanging filament lamps.

Vedge 7Service & Prices– I wouldn’t be able to comment on the service and prices as we were invited as a blogger and the meal was complimentary.  However, I would like to say that our server Rajesh was very polite and served us well and tolerated all our nakhras while we clicked photos and discussed how the dishes were. From what I gather after reading the menu, I can say that one would end up spending roughly about 750 per head.

Verdict– It was an average experience where food is concerned. I would recommend the chinese food and the Pan Supari martini.

Rating– 2.5/5

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Jun 12 2016

The Serial Griller, Andheri (W)- Review

Roochster

The Serial GrillerThe Serial Griller is such a cool name for a burger joint, no? Well, I have to say that the burgers are just as cool.

Let me give you a short background of the owner- cum- Burger chef Annant Chowdhary, who, by the way is a marketing professional when he’s not cooking up delicious burgers on the weekends and post work hours on weekdays. He said he’s always wanted to start his own restaurant and had to give it a shot to really make it happen. And that’s when ‘The Serial Burger’ happened. For now he’s operating from his home in Andheri and delivers to people living in and around Andheri.

What we had– The menu has about six burgers to choose from, out of which two are vegetarian. You also have an option to DIY (Do it yourself) by choosing the ingredients and sauces. Pretty neat! The burger I had is called the Jungle Bandit (Rs. 219) which is basically a huge slab of cottage cheese cooked well and placed between carrots, onions, capsicum, lettuce, tomatoes and a nice smearing of roast garlic and Garden mayo. You know, being a vegetarian, there aren’t any burgers that I really love apart from the AlooTikki burger from Mac Donald’s. The Jungle Bandit kind of changes that for me. I thought the burger was saucy & moist and immensely satisfying. Karan had the ‘American Mafia’ burger (Rs. 219) which is a minced chicken patty on a bed of grilled carrots, onions, jalapenos and some mustard mayo. He loved the chicken patty and choice of sauce and veggies inside the burger but felt that burger bun could have been better. We had both these burgers with some fries and Coke. The fries were perfect!

IMG-20160608-WA0011

How to order? As of now they’re taking orders post 8: 30pm on weekdays and from 12pm to 11pm on weekends. If you stay around Andheri, they can deliver. Contact: 82910 75654/655

Verdict- I highly recommend the burgers we tried and look forward to trying some more burgers very soon! Value for money!

Rating– 3.5/5

 

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Apr 5 2016

The American Joint, BKC- Review

Roochster

The American Joint 1I was invited to try ‘The American Joint’, an Indo-western restaurant that makes organic food. The moment I read ‘Organic’ I knew I had to visit it. They had a special menu for us bloggers and influencers as a part of their pre-opening trials and to get some honest feedback. Well, here is mine.

The American Joint, BKCFood and drinks-There were limited items on the Foodie menu but trust me we tried almost everthing so I’m briefly going to write what I liked or didn’t like about the stuff we had.

  • Lemonade Stand- So this is supposed to be your regular Nimbu pani using organic lemons but ends up being a real thirst quencher which refreshes instantly. It tasted like Mosambi juice with a lemon twist and it wasn’t even that sweet! I highly recommend this!
  • Southern sweet tea- This is basically your regular tea that’s cold sans milk. I didn’t like it much but if you’re a tea addict, this would be a great cooler in the summer.American Joint
  • Tex Mex Taters- These are basically jacket potatoes topped with beans, cheese, tomatoes, onions, olives and jalapenos. Taste-wise it was ok and would be way better if had with a nice sweet-spicy sauce.
  • Hummus To-You- This is hands down the best dish we had at The American Joint. It was perfect in every way. Right from the flavour of the hummus to the soft Pita bread, this is a definite must have at the restaurant and the best Hummus+pita I have ever had. I swear the first word that came from my mouth was ‘YUM’! Karan, my husband agrees.American Joint
  •  Southwestern COBB- This is one salad I would love to have everyday. Neatly portioned, you will find lettuce, beans, bell peppers, American corn and cheese. It is served with a creamy cilantro-lime dressing. It’s a great mix of sweetness, garlic, crunchiness and freshness.American Joint c
  • In Queso Emergency- Nacho chips with a delicious cheesy dip consisting of cheddar cheese, tomatoes, chillies and cilantro. I like that they served the dip separately instead of on top so you can have it un-soggy.
  • Mac & Tikka- A concept I’ve never tried before. The usual Mac n Cheese with a Tikka sauce on top. It was decent but I didn’t like that the macaroni was cold under the tikka sauce. Also, I’m not sure if people would like to mix their favourite Mac N cheese with an Indian topping. I for one may not want to have it again only because I like my Mac N cheese as is.American Joint b
  • San Fransisco Garlic fries- Super delicious fries that are too hard to resist. A must have.
  • Bombay Streets fries- These fries had Green chutney and Red chutney on top along with cheese. Both Karan and I didn’t like these fries at all. Somehow the green chutney was slightly bitter and didn’t go with the fries at all. A big no.
  • Say Cheeeese fries- This was a great combination and I’d love to have it again. Super cheesy, super yum.
  • Chilli Cheese Burger- The patty inside was nice and crisp, the bread was soft. The right amount of chilli and cheese.American Joint
  • Coffee & Donuts- The donuts I didn’t enjoy much. They were hard from inside and didn’t taste that great. The Choco-coffee dip on the other hand was delicious. I think instead of the donuts, if there was a mildly sweet sponge cake to dip inside the lip-smacking Nutella Espresso sauce, it would taste better.
  • Al Cappuccino- This was a nice, regular cappuccino with a lot of foam.

Ambience– The Capital building at BKC is pretty easy to find. Once you do, take the escalator up to the first floor and walk in to The American Joint, a small café-like restaurant with an open kitchen. You will find lots of green, brown and white, giving it a clean, earthy feel. The aromas of some of the dishes will pull you in and make your mouth water.

IMG_20160329_213520279 hService– We had gone there much before the restaurant even started so the staff was completely unaware about the items on the menu and didn’t quite place our orders properly. However, the owners of the restaurant were there and helped us quite a bit.

Prices– A thought that would come to anyone at first would be that organic food will be expensive. The people at The American Joint disagree. They source their organic supplies from a farm in Nashik and make sure the customer gets as promised. Their salads are about Rs.225-250, starters for Rs. 180-210, Mains for Rs.275-290, Fries for Rs. 110-120, Beverages for Rs.80-100 and desserts for Rs.75-110. They also have breakfast options priced reasonably. The portion size for all is good.

Verdict– This is one place I would like to go back to and have a hearty meal without feeling a pinch in my pocket. I’d consider it as a ‘Value for money’ place to dine. Go try!

Rating– 4/5

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Mar 3 2016

Sushi Cafe, Bandra (W)- Review

Roochster

I went here with my husband on a very random evening when we were both hungry and he was craving Sushi.
He had tried this place before but it was my first time there and I was hoping I’d like it cause I’m a vegetarian and I’ve eaten Sushi just 2-3 times before. The owner was very sweet and welcoming and we ordered according to his recommendations and weren’t disappointed. Turned out that we kept ordering more sushi till we were both stuffed.

We loved it that much, especially my husband. Its a very small place but very sweet and nice for a date night. We ended up paying about 2000 bucks which is not bad at all considering how much we ate.
I have to say that after that I’ve tried Sushi at a couple of other places too but it just wasn’t rightly done. Sushi Cafe knows how to make good Sushi and I would totally recommend it.

I look forward to going there again soon. 🙂

Rating– 4.5/5

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Mar 2 2016

O:Cha, Lower Parel- Review

Roochster

Oh Cha aHello! I think it’s been a while since I’ve written a full length review. Well, that’s because of so much happening at my end- house getting done, weddings, travelling with family and friends, blocked nose and bad throat, events, etc. etc. Clearly, I’ve also gotten lazy to sit and write so much but I think it’s time to bounce back now.

I was invited to try Oh:Cha and finally went there last week. I left it to the restaurant manager Monisha to send us Veg and Non Veg items according to our preferences in smaller portions. That gave us the opportunity to try 20 items from the menu. Boy were we lucky!

Drinks– We were both rushing from one meeting to another so obviously we couldn’t consume any cocktails. However, we did try some mocktails. I had the Orange & Kaffir Lime Caipiroska which had a nice citrusy zing to it. Karan had the Apple & Cucumber Fizz which would have tasted better had there been real apple juice instead of it being canned. We also tried the Mango Chilli Rocker which was basically mango milkshake with a hint of chilli. The Fresh Lime Soda was nice but quite syrup-y.

Oh cha bFood– For starters in Veg, I tried the Vegetable Chive Dumpling which was light and tasty. Karan tried the Chicken roll and said although it was soft and tender, he did not like the prominent chicken smell that came from it. On the other hand, he absolutely loved the texture and flavours of the Prawns cake with Lemon Grass starter. The Fried Turnip cake in black pepper sauce was one of my favourites. Who knew Turnip tasted that good! It was on the spicier side though. Next, the Stir Fried Sriracha Tofu was super soft and super spicy too. The Gai Hor Bai Toey or Pandan wrapped Chicken with Sriracha lemon chilli garlic sauce was a perfect 5 on 5 according to Karan. He loved the smokey chicken taste. The Gado Gado salad (Assorted veggies in Indonesian style peanut dressing) was a nice flavourful salad and I almost finished the entire thing by myself. Karan loved the Som Tam (Thai spicy raw papaya salad) and ended up eating quite a bit of it. After having so many starters and salads, it was time for main course. The Veg Phad thai noodles were great, more so because of the tamarind sauce and sprouts. We also called for Burnt garlic fried rice as I prefer rice to noodles and I have to say it was perfectly cooked! To go along with the noodles and rice, we had Tofu and Stir fried veggies in Sweet & Sour sauce which I thought was absolutely delicious! Karan had Stir fried prawns in Oyster mushroom sauce which was a bit too salty and it overpowered the taste of the dish.

Oh cha cOh Cha dDesserts– By now, we were pretty full but not stuffed, mind you. There’s always room for desserts, isn’t there? Ha! So we chose to try 4 different desserts! Yes you read right! First we tried the Chilli Chocolate tart with cremed Coconut icecream & chocolate soil. Now, this was basically a chocolate tart with a hint of chilli, coconut icecream with real shredded coconut, topped with Bournvita which they called chocolate soil. So I’d eat this dessert again but totally be ok without the Coconut Icecream. Also, maybe cake/brownie crumbs would be better than the Bournvita. Next was the Lemongrass Crème Brulee which was nice but could have been less sweet, a bit cool and with a bit more lemongrass flavour. The Gooey Chocolate Cake was lipsmacking! Wish they melted it and got it though so it would be a bit more gooey. The final dessert was the Passionfuit pudding with cashew and dates which was the least favourite of them all. I wouldn’t recommend it.

Oh cha eAmbience– Located at the Mathuradas Mills compound, Lower Parel, O:h Cha is easy to find. From the time you enter, you will see a lot of grey, high ceiling, a big eagle, huge cane lamps, a big bar and a very fine dine sorta feel. The music they were playing that day was awesome! Amazing covers of hits by Michael Jackson by some lady singer. (I would like to know the artist.) The place is pretty big and can easily be used for parties and events.

Service– We were served by 3-4 different servers and when we asked any of them about any dish, they all knew what it was so that’s good. They were all very warm and welcoming.

Prices-Considering the quality of ingredients used in making the dishes, the restaurant has priced everything decently but slightly on the expensive side. The starters range from Rs. 350- Rs. 650. The soups and salads are priced at Rs.300-350. Main course dishes range from Rs. 450 for Veg, to Rs. 550 for Chicken based and Rs. 650 for sea food. The rice and noodles range from Rs. 400 to Rs. 750. Desserts are all for Rs. 300. So in all you would end up spending about Rs.1000-1300 per head without alcohol easily.

Verdict– If you love Chinese and Thai food, you must try O:h Cha but I suggest you skip the desserts here.

Rating– 3.5/5

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Dec 1 2015

Vanilla Infused Kitchen, Bandra (W)- Review

Roochster

I had been following Vanilla Infused Kitchen on Instagram for a while before I actually got to try some of the stuff. The completely self-taught home baker Shazli from Bandra has mastered the art of making beautiful cakes after 4 years of R&D and she has arrived! Yup, she has, alright.

VIK 1Desserts– Vanilla Infused Kitchen is your dessert heaven. They bake various kinds of cakes, Jar desserts, cupcakes, Brownies, chocolates and a lot more. Their cakes range from Rs. 1000- 1800 per kg depending on the cake you choose. For cupcakes, you need to order minimum 12 pieces. They also make Chocolate Hampers for occasions.

The first time I tried her stuff, the delivery had gone terribly wrong because of which all the desserts she had sent were mixed into each other, causing a flavourful confusion of sorts. So the second time around, she made sure she sent me a proper box with 6 cupcakes so I could taste each one properly. Here’s what I thought.

VIK 2Gooey Chocolate Brownie (Rs. 750 for 750gms) – Excellent taste and texture of the brownie. It could have been more gooey but otherwise, it was absolutely yummyinmytummy.

Red Velvet cupcake (Rs. 70 per piece) – Not many can get the Red Velvet right in terms of everything. I enjoyed every bite of this one!

Salted Caramel Kitkat (Rs. 70 per piece) – The crunchiness of the Kitkat along with the cupcake made it a very enjoyable eating experience.

Boston Cream Pastry cupcake (Rs. 75 per piece) – My favourite from all the cupcakes I tried! It was amazing how the cream came oozing out after my first bite. I can’t tell you how much I loved it! I was left craving for more after I finished gobbling it down within seconds! An absolute must have for sure!

Homemade Toffee Buttercream cupcake (Rs. 70 per piece) – This was my least favourite cupcake to be honest. I felt the icing was too strong in flavour and it overpowered the muffin underneath.

Hummus (Rs.250 for 450gms) – Now, she doesn’t usually make Hummus unless you’re an old client of hers or unless she really loves you but I have to say I’m just lucky cause I got to try her Hummus. It is perfect, probably the best hummus I’ve ever had! If you’re lucky too or get the chance to, you must order the Hummus for any party or when you want to have a healthy meal.

VIK HUmmusWhere? – Currently Shazli works out of her home kitchen in Bandra near Mount Mary Church. You can call her on 9819652129 to place an order or follow Vanilla Infused Kitchen on Instagram and Facebook to see delicious, mouth watering pictures of all the cakes she bakes!

Verdict– Vanilla Infused Kitchen has lip smacking desserts which you just can’t resist. I’ve only tried the cupcakes yet, but I can’t wait to try all the other items on her menu. I recommend the Boston Cream pastry cupcake, Brownie and Hummus! Go try!

Rating– 4/5

 

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Nov 16 2015

Loco Chino, Fort- Review

Roochster

Loco Chino 1Being a frequenter at the Carter Road Food lane, Bandra, I had seen Loco Chino several times but never really thought of trying the food there for some reason. Thankfully, I was invited to try Loco Chino at Fort and I’m so glad I did!

Food– I took my Foodie brother along for this review as he’s going to the RannUtsav in Kutch for 4 months and I’m going to miss him! He was more excited than me though to try the food! Being a pre-set menu for just the two of us, we were served smaller portions of loads of dishes. The Veg Fiesta Nachos was the first thing we tried and I have to admit, we were disappointed that there was less cheese. Also, the nacho chips could have been better tasting.  Next we tried the Kung Pao potatoes and trust me when I say that they are an absolute must have! After 5 Spice, only Loco Chino serves the crispiest, tastiest and most flavourful Kung Pao potatoes. We also tried the Chili Basil Paneer which was not something I had tried before. I loved the basil flavour on paneer! For drinks we had the Sassy Senorita, a signature drink which is a tasty concoction of orange juice, passion fruit, grapefruit and a prominent peachy zing mixed with soda. Sassy indeed! We then tried the Assorted Sautéed Veg Quesadilla which was a perfect assortment of veggies and cheese and tasted really good. Next we tried the dimsums. We were lucky enough to get to try 3 different types of Dim Sums at Loco Chino. The Spinach and Parmesan was the best one with amazing texture and taste. The Thai Sambal Cottage cheese was like having paneer makhani sabzi in a dumpling. Different and yummy.  The Edamame Truffle dimsum was my least favourite. It was a little bland so in order to get some flavour, I had to dip it in the sauces on the table. We were half full and had some space for main course so tried a wok where we could choose rice or noodles, the sauce, veggies, proteins and toppings. I chose Steamed rice as the base, Brocoli, Bell peppers and Corn as the veggies, Cottage Cheese as the protein (Very few chinese places offer paneer), Sweet and sour sauce and for toppings there were spring onions, Fried Onion and roasted peanuts. I felt the sweet and sour sauce was a little sweeter than I thought. I would have liked it to be slightly spicy too. After all of this, there was no way we could eat more after this for sure except for some dessert, of course.

We had two desserts and both were fantastic! The Tres Leches Cake (Vanilla sponge cake dipped in liquid milkmaid. When I saw it at first, I thought what the hell am I going to be eating but one bite changed it all. It was amazingggg! The Sumatra Chocolate was basically chocolate mousse with coconut. Now, I am not a coconut fan but this mousse was too good! There was a perfect amount of coconut, not overpowering the taste of chocolate and the consistency of the mousse. Absolutely loved it.

Loco Chino 2Ambience– Located at Fort, near ‘Ayub’s’ and ‘Forbe’s One’, Loco Chino is this colourful little restaurant that has a young, fun vibe. The furniture and décor is inspired from Mexico and Spain is what I see; nothing Chino in it. The tables with Moroccan tiles look beautiful but I’m not quite sure they go with the coloured plastic chairs. I loved the Mexican Hat lamps though. Very cool. One thing I would like them to pay urgent attention to is the washroom. It was quite dirty, wet and not well maintained.

Service– Being a complimentary lunch, I can’t really say much about the service but from what I observed, it was pretty good and the customers seemed to be eating their lunch happily.

Loco Chino 3Prices– I think with the quality and quantity you get here, Loco Chino is very reasonably priced. The Veg starters range from Rs. 169-189 and non-veg is between Rs.199-269. The Dim Sums all range from Rs. 199-239. The Veg Wok is for Rs. 199, non veg for Rs. 209 and seafood for Rs. 249. Desserts are all for Rs. 149. The Sassy Senorita was for Rs. 89. So it would cost approximately Rs. 350-400 each after eating very comfortably. That is amazing considering how expensive it is to eat out at other places.

Verdict-Loco Chino has good food and is reasonably priced. If you’re there, please have the Kung Pao potatoes, the Spinach & Parmesan Dim sum, Thai Sambal Dim Sum and Sumatra Chocolate!

Rating– 3.5/5

 

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Oct 29 2015

Ming Yang, Bandra (W)- Review

Roochster

Ming Yang 1copyThose of you who know me, are pretty much aware of how I never ate Chinese before… somehow I never understood how people liked Chinese. Five Spice sort of changed that for me. Thankfully, otherwise I would have never gotten down to trying Ming Yang which has some very interesting Chinese food and has been around for almost fifteen years! I can’t wait to tell you about my experience there!

Food & Drinks– Our night started with this interesting and sweetish Wine cocktail made by Ming Yang’s very own award winning bartender- Navneet.  It’s called ‘Beijing Bellini’ and is a mix of Lychee syrup, lemongrass bitters and sparkling wine (prosecco).  We were introduced to Chef David who is the master of all the delicious dishes you get to eat at Ming Yang, Bandra. He and his team made our stomachs very happy that night. The sweet roasted cashews dipped in Chilli flakes that are complimentary and are placed at every table just made my day! I knew my experience at Ming Yang was going to be nothing less than ace.

Ming Yang 2 copy I had the Veg Hot & Sour soup which was absolutely perfect and had a good mix of veggies inside. Karan had the Lung Fung soup (Chicken and Lobster) which he said smelled earthy in a way and tasted good too.  Next we tried the ‘Da Ziran’ which was different- a unique combination of vodka, champagne, lettuce and lime juice. It was slightly bitter but if you love veggies, even in your cocktail, do try this one. The starter that I felt stood out among all was the Crispy fried lotus stem tossed in Osmanthus honey. Who knew a lotus could taste so good! It was exquisite and absolutely delectable. I want to go have it right now! The most guzzle-worthy cocktail followed this. They call it the ‘Asian Sling’ (Raw papaya marination with pepper syrup mixed with Gin). As bad as it may sound, it actually was aaahhmazing! Both Karan and I loved it. We then tried Dim Sums both Veg and Non veg. The Sui Mai dim sums (Celery, Carrot & Zucchini dumplings) were slightly bland but went well with the Sichuan Pepper sauce.   Karan tried the Hakka Siu Mai (Chicken + Prawn enhanced with sesame oil seasoning) which he said tasted pretty good. Even before my favourite cocktail from Ming Yang was gulped, another one was at our table. The ‘Panda Tiny’ was at our table, making its presence felt in a small glass decorated with a fragrant Star Anise floating above the frothy tequila, vodka, galangal, five spice and pineapple juice drink. Another starter which tasted and looked a lot like French beans- Kenya beans with Cha Choy and Dry Red Chilli made me feel like I should forget about all the cheese and chocolates and concentrate on eating healthy Chinese food! For Main course we had Burnt Garlic Fried Rice which went very well along with the accompanying gravy based dish which was basically mixed veggies such as Broccoli, Babycorn, Water Chestnuts and beans cooked in Soy sauce. Karan had a Fish dish and a Chicken dish which he liked too.

Ming Yang 3 copyAfter all of this, we were pretty stuffed and before we could have any more, we needed to slow down with some tea, just like the Chinese so we tried two new types of tea. One was called Silver Needles (White Tea) served in a Champagne glass. This tea was light. The other one was an Oolong tea called Wuyi. This one was much better and it was a good decision to drink it right before dessert.

Now after a short break, it was time for desserts and boy was I excited to try them! We tried their Chocolate Mousse with Caramelized Popcorn and Date pancakes with Vanilla Icecream. I have to say after such a scrumptious meal, I was slightly disappointed with the desserts. I am a big dessert fan, especially of the pastries I’ve been eating from Taj since childhood. Somehow, this just didn’t do justice to the heavenly taste I’ve been indulging in all these years.

Ming Yang 4 copyThe entire meal ended with the most interesting cocktail called ‘Since 1806’. This was primarily Bourbon Whiskey flavoured with Orange peel, Demerara sugar, bitters, a little Old Monk and smoked with an original Cuban Cigar! This is for all those who’d like to sit down with a drink in one hand and a smoke in the other. I found it too bitter for my taste but Karan thought it wasn’t too bad.

 Ambience– It was a preview dinner so we had a staff member showing us around; all the work that’s gone into changing the entire look of the restaurant. Ming Yang used to look like a traditional Chinese restaurant earlier and now it’s transformed into this contemporary, spacious and is more youth-appealing restaurant with a gorgeous view. There are several sections in the restaurant depending on your visit. In case you’ve come with a large group of over fifteen people, there is a nice corner with a long table just for your group. There’s also a section that’s ideal for business meetings and romantic meals together.

Service– One thing you would know if you’ve been to any Taj property whether it is a restaurant or a cake shop or a receptionist at the hotel- the service is top notch. I would like to especially like to thank Navneet- the bartender, Ernest, Mohan, Pritam for serving us, Ritesh- the restaurant manager and Erica for enlightening us on the different teas that were there. We had the most amazing service and that alone could be a reason to keep visiting Ming Yang.

Prices– Being a five star hotel, the prices too are quite high but you get the quality you would expect and it’s worth the money you’re paying for. All the cocktails we had were for Rs. 700 each. The Veg and Chicken starters cost Rs. 750 each, Dim Sums Rs. 500-550, Sea food starters range from Rs. 1250 and go up to Rs. 1800. The vegetarian soups are for Rs. 500 while the non-veg ones are for Rs. 525-575. The vegetarian main course is between Rs. 800-900, chicken for Rs. 1100 and sea food ranges from Rs. 1725 and goes up to Rs. 3500. The teas are all priced at Rs. 350 plus taxes per pot. The desserts which I didn’t like at all are for Rs. 500 and Rs. 700. Add taxes to all of this and calculate about Rs. 2000 per head with alcohol for a full meal.

Verdict– Ming Yang is a great place to go indulge in Chinese food for those of you who love the cuisine. Do not forget to have the Asian Sling (cocktail) and the Crispy friend Lotus stem! Oh my God! Now I’m craving that God damn Lotus stem! *mouth watering*

Rating– 4/5

 

 

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Oct 5 2015

Brewbot, Andheri (W)- Review

Roochster
Pizza and Lemon Cheesecake

Pizza and Lemon Cheesecake

Came here for the second time and it’s been an equally disappointing experience.

Food– The food is bland, the quantity is less and nothing great about the taste overall.
They brew their own beer and we had called for the Mojo Rising 2 ltrs tower which was nice and malty. I had a Cranberry Basil punch which was good.
The fries were so less…smaller than Mc Donald’s regular sized fries. The boys had the Chicken slider which is basically 3 mini burgers that they said were very bad. Karan said that the bread was more flavourful than the pattie. Shame! He would rate that dish -1 on 5. Uuhhh yeah that bad.
The Farmhouse pizza which had a pesto base, topped with bell peppers and pine nuts was so-so. Bland again. We avoided the mushrooms and pumpkin on it. Thank God!
The Onion rings were… wait for it… bland again. Less oily though, which is a good thing.
The Lemon cheesecake was thankfully our last order and luckily tasted good with the right texture and taste. I would have it again if I ever went there.

Ambience– Great place to hang out with a nice vibe, good music and comfortable seating. They have Jenga and Uno to entertain. It’s quite a large place actually with an inside and outside section along with a space on top as well.

Service–  Good service. We would have liked better recommendations for food though.

Prices– We paid Rs. 3549 in total for the 4 of us  including the Beer tower which is not bad but it pinched ‘cause the food was not good at all.

Verdict– Gave it a second chance and was disappointed again. I’m not sure if I’d go there again. Oh well.

Rating– 1.5/5

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