Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The Sun, Napean Sea Road

Rest : The Sun,
Loc : Napean Sea Road,
Meal : Lunch

The Sun, is still, in my opinion the best Punjabi restaurant in Bombay, it has been consistent for over 25 years that i have been going there and despite its extremely small size it really delivers big. The menu is fairly traditional and relatively expansive but a lot of the dishes are executed in their own unique way which thankfully hasn't changed over the years.

Start off with a stash of poppadums while we wait for lunch to begin. 

The Chana Masala was decent and it was the first time we ordered it, the navratan korma was its old sweet spicy self. 

The Malai Kofta to rule all Malai Kofta dishes worldwide. For all the years i lived away, this was the one dish in this one restaurant that signified home. Its just so uniquely done and has such a unique flavor, it will imprint itself in the taste center of your brain, never to leave. 

what is a punjabi lunch without some Garlic Naan ? 

The Small neighbourhood restaurant continues to kick major ass, we have been loyalists every since it opened and continue to do so. A lot of people who have been here agree. I dont write about it much since i dont want it to get popular at large.

They have a branch at Breach Candy, which i have oddly never been to.

Food : 9/10
Service : 8/10
Damage : 2500 for 6. 

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Onam @ Dakshin Costal, ITC

Rest : Dakshin, Coastal
Meal : Dinner
Loc : ITC, Grand Maratha, Sahar
I am not a religious guy nor much of a traditionalist but i always find a way to celebrate Onam by having a blowout meal. For the last few years i have been alternating between Mani's in Matunga and Dakshin Coastal at the ITC. This year was the turn of Dakshin Coastal. 

Onam, the harvest festival of the south is celebrated with the sadhya meal served typically on a banana leaf with a traditional selection. 

The menu was expansive and one of the advantages of dining with them is one can ask for accompaniments not strictly true to the festival. 

The Rasam was their regular concoction, tomato and lentil among other things. Tangy, peppery, damn near perfect. 

The tamarind chutney was simply terrific, the tempered yoghurt was delicious as well. The beetroot chutney was kind of weird  but then i am not a beetroot kinda guy. 

The buttermilk was not bad but not the typical sourish brew one gets at southie joints.

The Olam, a coconut stew was terrific, with bits of onion, the dish of the evening in my opinion. There was also dal and a pumpkin stew. The dal was nice, the stew felt very North Indianish to me, not that its a bad thing. The sambar was Keralite, good but not nearly as good as the onion sambar that Chef Padamja cooked up on my previous Onam visit. 

Both the Thoran & The Avial were brilliantly done, as always its a problem of too many, which is a decent problem to have i suppose. 

A lot of Onam meals now are served with red rice as is traditional. However nowhere have i seen folks do appams, if your lucky its a chapati or puri otherwise its just rice. On my last Onam meal here, i lamented that i didn't want to cheat by getting one but this time, they offered right away and the Olam was just too good. I couldn't quite resist. 

We even asked for their regular podi, gunpowder stand which was served with a spoonful of Ghee on the side. Happiness. 

The paysam was brilliant, light and delicious while the Pala was much like a regular fruit salad you would make at home. 

Topped off with an okayish filter coffee to stay awake during the drive home. 

Overall, Dakshin Coastal continues to be the leading fine dine, South Indian specialty restaurant although its frightfully expensive. In this case, the meal is price at 2250 + taxes which is actually nearly 40% lower than their regular thali, so its a steal.

Service was quick, friendly and eager to please as expected.

Food : 8/10
Service : 8/10

Friday, August 14, 2015

Tanjore, New South Indian Joint In Colaba

Rest : Tanjore by Angie 
Loc : Near the Colaba Fire Station
Meal : Dinner

Most people know what a sucker i am for a good south indian meal, especially one that goes beyond the idli-vada-dosa trinity. A long time ago there used to be a Tanjore at the Taj and i have only faint memories of the place, mostly about some sort of jali screen or pillars, i cant be sure. Anyway, this Tanjore by Angie, has been open for a while and i have been meaning to make it there but didn't quite make it until now.

The space is small and the vibe was what you would get at an East London joint, very quaint, functional with limited seating. The menu has a few different types of Idli, Vada, Dosa, Uttapam& Upma. They also serve a Thanjavur tiffin which is like an udipi platter with a helping of the above and a meal which i ordered. 

The filter coffee was nice, not to sweet, not too strong either though. Id say it was decent but not nearly as good as say a idli house but then again, little else is. 

The Molgapudi Idli in Til oil were fabulous. Three largish idlis coated with podi just how you would want it. Just brilliant. Served with some ordinary chutneys but a brilliant, sourish sambar , surprisingly like they make at my parents. 

The chaas is a must get, not too sourt but served super chilled. All ive ever wanted with all my restaurant meals at a Ramanayak or a Mani's has been chilled chaas but its never possible. 

So the other meal they do is the thali, which is a platter for one person and consists of a Rasam, Sambar, Pickle, Cured, Sweet, Parotta, Rice, Kadi, a dry potato vegetable and a gravy. Overall this was not too bad, the potato was like the dosa stuffing, the kadi was okay. Rasam was decent but served lukewarm. The sambar as i mentioned already was great. Ideally, they need to take this up a few notches to make it noteworthy. 

Overall, the menu is very interesting looking, there is even an appam id like to try at some point. So if you go there, avoid the thali, it promises a lot and delivers little, however going by the idli and the coffee, their strengths lie perhaps in the more familiar dishes, some of it which look delectable.

Since its mostly a no-frills joint, the prices arent terribly high but certainly not udipi grade.The service is quick and friendly and i would like to give them a go for the rest of the menu. Folks who have been to Dakshinayan wouldn't find this to be below par. 

Food : 7/10
Service : 8/10
Damage 600 for 2. 
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