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Archive for October, 2009

Late evening stopover at Mikneil Caterers

October 31, 2009 1 comment

Read about this new eatery opened near St. Andrew’s Church in the newspaper Midday. Its just a week-old or maybe a bit older and is run by a family that lives behind Mikneil. They are similar to Kalpana which is on Chappel Road.

Mikneil

Mikneil is a essentially a takeaway. As you can see from the photo above it is quite tiny eatery. And the big dood standing on the left, though inadvertently clicked in the picture, makes for a nice comparison on the size aspect. As the photo above suggests there isn’t much seating space on the outside and on the inside there are two stools which cannot seat us big guys! What occupies the space inside are piles of boxes,  a fridge and the storage shelf (for lack of a better word!) where the ready made food items are kept!

P1050225Mikneil keeps similar food items to that of Kalpana including pan rolls, chops, cutlets, rotis. However, the differentiating factor here is the Goan Cuisine Vindaloo! Yes they keep vindaloo too! Not sure about the pricing but I am definitely trying this out soon! While there, I laid my hands on a chicken sandwich and a beef pan roll. The food was not spicy like the ones at Kalpana or even Cheron Caterers nor was it overtly oily! I liked both the items and wished I had taken a few more from there! Nonetheless it was a good appetizer before the final dinner at Candies!! (and here I was trying to loose weight!)

I am most definitely eat here more often!

 

 

A photoblog of Aarey Colony, Goregaon

October 26, 2009 4 comments

Aarey Colony is the place where I go for my jogs. Ok Ok. Walks! Anyways, took my camera along on Sunday to click some pictures.

Below is the Oberoi Complex. It would be one awesome view from the top floor of the building. Imagine the green expanse between you and the horizon. Bliss!

OberoiOne of the many tree lined paths out there.

Path

Another one…if you are wondering what the brown spots are, well that is dried cow dung!

PathAnd another one…

Another Path

Well this is one of the smaller ones 😛

P1050149A Tree that makes you go round and round and round

Tree

Money plant covered Streelight

P1050169Damn! public transport reaches here as well!

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The sunset, hidden by the bushes

Sunset

The final moment before the sun disappears to rise again, another day

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A photoblog of Lucky Biryani!

October 25, 2009 3 comments

This is my first attempt at a combination of pixels and paragraphs (picked that catchy tag from the website pixelsandparagraphs.com, which I am following these days to get some inspiration!).

Anyways, coming back to the topic, I chanced upon Lucky Biryani, at Oshiwara, Jogeshwari, an offshoot of Lucky Restaurant in Bandra and apparently their third franchisee with the second one being located in Malad, Mumbai. Strange to see the place being branded as a Biryani-specialty restaurant as I would have thought they would want to keep their original branding of ‘Lucky Restaurant’ as they are anyways famous for Biryanis! But then again, seeing as to the popularity of Biryani-places in the vicinity it does look like a shrewd business decision to capitalise on what they know best!

The Oshiwara outlet is a lot smaller than the one in Bandra. We had to wait for 5 minutes before someone got up. Thankfully the service here is really quick so we didn’t spend much time waiting outside until the tables were cleaned etc. Once seated, we were handed a small booklet which also serves as takeaway menu. To me, this is an innovative idea. If you live nearby and like the food at Lucky, just take the menu card given to you and order next time you feel like gorging on the many items they serve here!

Menu Card

For starters we ordered for a Mutton Seekh Kebab and Lassi to go with. The Seekh Kebabs were at our table in no time. Accompanied by freshly chopped onions and hot green chutney, the Seekh kebabs were delightful. Not overcooked nor was it dry as a stick which is not how I like it! The Mutton Kebab was good but I don’t think it was worth the INR 120 we paid for it!

mutton Seekh Kabab

The starters were followed by the Biryani which, priced at INR 125, seemed a tad cheaper compared to the starters! The Biryani is not quite like the one at Bandra. It does not have the aroma like the one served at Lucky, Bandra and is a bit bland. The Biryani here lacks the gravy as well which you would normally associate with Lucky’s Biryanis. It’s no wonder then that the Raita had to be ordered separately as I doubt most order for Raita with such bland Biryani. Bland though it was, I still liked it and gorged on it as if it was the best food I have come across so far! Also, the amount of Raita these guys serve can easily be enough for a family of six. Infact the bowl is so big we should have been asked to pay for it but we weren’t! Strange. I guess either they forget or they actually do not charge for it!

Biryani

Raita

Accompanying the food was the Lassi. At INR 35 it wouldn’t dent your pocket in any which way. But I wouldn’t suggest the Lassi with the Biryani, rather have it with something a bit more spicy and coloured :D. In the end it just become a bit too much of milk products!

Lassi

Ending the meal was the famous Caramel Custard of Lucky. It seemed bigger than the one served at Bandra but tasted just as good! These guys really do make good Caramel Custard. One cannot smell the egg in the custard which suggests that the dessert is relatively fresh! The custard was for INR 40, which is the same price as at Bandra. Curiously though, the Custard is the only dessert they serve at the Oshiwara outlet while at Bandra they have a few more including the Firni as well.

Custurd

It was a good meal but was a let down on the pricing front – at INR 355 it was a tad too pricey for just two people! But then again, my endless pit is to be blamed for it knows no boundaries!

PS: Don’t mind the watermark! Was trying something and ended up with a 100% opaque watermark in the centre of the images which I cannot remove unfortunately!

Starters Bing at The Club, Santacruz West

October 25, 2009 Leave a comment

A friend gave me a birthday treat at his club at Santacruz, Mumbai. He being veg, we decided, rather I decided to order veg starters. Started with a Cheese Paneer starter. Paneer is basically cottage cheese, so essential it was Cheese Cottage Cheese Crispy!! The dish was alright, nothing too special about it. The cheese was kinda too much as we couldn’t really taste the feel the paneer, feel and not taste as the Paneer is generally bland in nature. Following up the cottage cheese, or no cottage cheese dish was a special dish made from deep fried bread. forgot the name, but it was one heavy dish! extremely oily and could easily give anyone a heart attack. Thankfully I am a healthy (*cough* *cough*) bloke so could digest it without any problems!

The heart attack reciepe was followed up with the Paneer Crispy and then the Chicken Reshmi Kabab. Both was good dishes to end our dinner prematurely as none of us was hungry anymore for the main course! The Paneer crispy had a bit of colour (as in spice!) to it while the Reshmi Kebab as always was bright yellow. They just love their turmeric these club people!!

Anyways after an average meal which ended up being a good meal by the end of cost my friend INR 270. Not so cheap when you consider that people become members at various clubs so that they can avail of good and more importantly cheap food! But the booze prices at the clubs are quite cheap, infact so cheap that no other place in the city can compete with such low rates! I guess that makes these clubs a drunkards paradise!

Anyhoo, coming back to topic, well the meal was good.  I have been here a few times before and I wouldn’t mind coming here again!

A note: You need to know someone who is a member of the club to eat there. This is the rule across all such clubs or gymkhana in Mumbai.

Good food though expensive – Sheetal Bukhara, Khar West

October 20, 2009 1 comment

Got an opportunity to try out a new place with friends over the Diwali weekend and so here I was at Sheetal Bukhara which is located in the same building as H20 club. From the ambiance its quite evident that this place is expensive (and it is!). It has a chilled out feeling to it, as if saying that you can spend all the time you want to here! Order a couple of drinks and spend the rest of the afternoon with your friends gorging on the many starters available here!

Anyways, we ordered a few starters ourselves along with a few non-alcoholic drinks. I had a Kash ma Kash while the rest drank Shahi Samundra, Coca Cola and Masala Chaas. I must say the drinks were wonderful especially the Chaas and so was the Kash ma Kash. Infact, I think they make awesome Chaas, even though it is a bit pricy it is still worth having! Complimenting the drink were the starters which included the Murgh Hariyali Kebab and Paneer Seekh Kebab and some Masala Papad. I cannot comment much on the Seekh Kebab as I didn’t get to have much of it and besides Seekh Kebabs aren’t my specialty either! The starters were good with the Chicken Hariyali Kebab as green as it gets! The chicken was well cooked and wasn’t spicy or bland but just about right!

Next up is the main course which consisted of Veg Bukhara Biryani and Murg Bukkhara Masala. The chicken dish was much like Chicken Kolhapuri without the hotness attached to it while the Veg Biryani was very rich in spices.The Murg Bukkhara Masala was accompanied by Kulcha and Butter Paratha which were both oven fresh when bought to the table.The biryani here isn’t the Dum Biryani but more of like a Kashmiri Biryani with a mixture of Awadhi spices to make a mix variant!

Finishing of the meal was the Rabdi which tasted very much like the one my mom made over the Diwali weekend. Good stuff! The food at Sheetal was exceptionally good and it seemed clear that the chefs were very particular of the way they made their food. The kulchas weren’t burnt a bit, the masala wasn’t overdone and neither was the food coloured! I would highly recommend this restaurant to anyone with a taste for good food!

Here are the prices:

Drinks

Shahi Samundra – INR 125

Masala Chaas – INR 65

Kash Ma Kash – INR 125

Coca Cola – INR 100 (Just realised we were charged a good INR 90 more than the street price!!)

Starters

Masala Papad – INR 20

Murg Hariyali Kebab – INR 200

Paneer Seekh Kebab – INR 165

Main Course

Murg Bukhara Biryani – INR 185

Murg Bukhara Masala – INR 210

Kulcha – INR 28

Butter Paratha – 29

Diveagar & Harihareshwar Food jaunt!

October 20, 2009 3 comments

A trip to the beach and temple towns of Diveagar and Harihareshwar (in no particular order) proved to be good on the restaurant review front. We were able to try out different restaurants on both days to give us a sense of the kind of food you can expect there. To summarise right now, food is much better at Diveagar and there are quite a few options and most of them remain open till 9-10 PM which is a good thing for travelers like us who prefer to be just-in-time for dinner!

I would like to start in sequence from breakfast to dinner where we had breakfast at Vadkhal Naka and dinner at Harihareshwar. First up is Gandharv Family Restaurant which is located at the Vadkhal Naka on NH17. It is on the road that goes towards Mangaon. Gandharv is a veg-only restaurant (which we only realised the next day when we stopped for lunch and had to move out as we were in the mood for some prawns and chicken!). We stopped here for breakfast and had Tea and Puri Bhaji, a combination which rarely goes wrong anywhere! The food was pretty good, hot puris and hot bhaji along with chutney and sambhar which made for an odd but interesting combination! The tea was nice as well, full of milk instead of water! It was a full breakfast costing us INR 22 for the Puri Bhaji and INR 4 for the tea. A must go to place if on the NH17. Maybe next time, will try for lunch as well. There seem to be a couple more expensive places nearby but I think they will only charge more for the same quality food.

Breakfast was followed by lunch at Mihika Bhojnalaya which is located in Diveagar. The restaurant is situated inside Prathamesh Holiday Resorts. Mihika doesn’t have an extensive menu – it serves only fish in non-veg and Watana in Veg and there is Omlette Pav as well. We were served Surmai as there wasn’t anything else available, though they do seem to serve a couple more types of fishes, the names of which I cannot recall. The food here is pretty good and for INR 140 we got a Surmai Fry, Surmai Masala, some more Surmai Masala and plain rice and rotis – quite a lot for just INR 140! It was a hearty meal and I cannot remember eating so much fish for so less!

There is another restaurant, Prathamesh Holiday Homes, right opposite the resort where Mihika is located.  Holiday Homes also serves Punjabi food among other things, as the board outside clearly mentioned. Will try this place on my next visit!

We also had a chance to try out snacks at Grasshopper Inn (not sure what an ‘inn’ is doing inside a resort!) at the MTDC Resort at Harihareshwar which seems to be the only place far and wide to serve any kind of food! We had Kanda Bhajiya and Batata Bhajiya which was priced at INR 35 each. The Kanda Bhajiya was golden brown and not burnt, a serious sigh of relief! The Potato Bhajiya was oily but acceptable for it wasn’t dripping of oil! The snack at the MTDC Resort was followed by dinner at a roadside Chinese eatery, the name of which escapes my memory. The food here is nothing to talk about though everything you get here is edible. If atall there was a rating of 101 places to eat the same chinese food, then this place would be in the low 90s. The tandoori chicken we had here though wasn’t bad, a little too overcooked for my liking but tasty nonetheless. Ironic how a chinese branded eatery served better tandoor than chinese!!! The half tandoor we had was worth INR 70 while the Manchurian Rice cost us INR 60.This small eatery is on the way to Diveagar from Harihareshwar and was the only eatery we came across in the 35 kms stretch until we reached Diveagar.

We started the next day with Poha mixed with grated coconut at the Cottage where we stayed. It was a wonderful breakfast to kick start the day as the meal was nice and hot with a liberal addition of coconut. I think I will ask my mom to add coconut the next time she makes Poha! The Poha was enough to keep us going until lunch for which we stopped at Upkar Restaurant which is right next to the Gandharv Family Restaurant. Upkar was the choice as we wanted to have non-veg food. The boys ordered for a Prawns Masala, chicken fried rice and a chicken schezwan fried rice. The Prawns Masala was awesome – it wasn’t spicy and the prawns seemed fresh.  I guess we got there at the right time!! Had the prawns with Bhakri – a bread (more like a chapati) made of rice instead of wheat – which incidently was a first for me! The chicken fried rice was good and had a lot of chicken pieces in there. The meal was a cheap one as well as we spent a little less than INR 100 per person.

Interesting is the fact that two of the best places on the whole trip were located at Vadkhal Naka. In my view, this is a definate must stop place for breakfast/lunch/dinner. Also, Vadkhal has a more Veg places than non-veg places it seems as all I could see was veg resturants all throughout the Naka.

This was a good trip as I got to try out so many different places and more importantly different food items at every place. If it was fish at Diveagar then it was prawns at Vadkhal though I think the chicken and the veg food was good as well! Overall, the food was good and the trip was refreshing – nothing else matters beyond that!

A photoblog of Diveagar and Harihareshwar Trip

October 19, 2009 16 comments

On the way….the morning clouds at Palm Beach Road, Navi Mumbai

The Clouds

The beautiful NH17

NH17One of the many curves on the way to Diveagar

CurveThe View from our cottage, Vrindavan

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Nature at work…or should I say Big Red Ants at work

Red Aunts

A beautiful path to…..

Path…..

Coconut Treesa beautiful beach, Diveagar Beach

Diveagar Beach

The Creek at Diveagar Beach

Creek at DiveagarAn old tree trunk, Don’t know for how long its been here!

TreeSunset at Harihareshwar Beach

SunsetCatching up at night at MTDC Resort

Sitting togetherSunrise at Diveagar Beach

SunriseRipples in the sand, almost looks like I am in a desert!

RipplesThe Sea!

Sea

The waves

The Waves

The Road back home!

Road