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Open affair, an affair with Italian cuisine

March 21, 2010 3 comments

Its been more than two years since I went to Open Affair last. This time thought of trying out something Italian in this multi cuisine restaurant. But before that, we ordered for a Pahadi Kebab which was just about ok. I distinctly remember the food being really good when I was here last time around. The Kebab was a bit spicy but the chicken was a disappointment. It felt like the chicken wasn’t fresh. It wasn’t juicy or tender either.

We also ordered for a Blue Sea, made out of ice, sprite and curacao. The Blue Sea is a nice drink.

Next up we ordered for a Risotto. It is an Italian dish and according to the Wikipedia – Risotto is a traditional Italian rice dish cooked with broth  and flavored with parmesan cheese and other ingredients, which can include meat, fish or vegetables. The name means literally “little rice” and it is one of the most common ways of cooking rice in Italy. Well, a Risotto should ideally include a lot of veggies, meat, cheese and sauce.

The one offered at Open Affair is accompanied by one of the three sauces including a Paprika sauce which we ordered for. The sauce is mildly spicy but not as good as the one at Out of the Blue.

The rice used was a short grain rice which is what a Risotto should be made of which was good to see. However, the menu said Arborio rice which I am not sure you get here (unless imported, which explains the high price) though a similar variety is available from South India. The cheese though, wasn’t sure which one it was. The disappointment though was the lack of veggies. There were a few salad items here and there and garlic bread too but overall the Risotto seemed to lack the veggies which otherwise would have made it a great dish!

Overall, the Risotto was good but could have been better. The Pahadi Kebab was a major let down while the drink was ok. Honestly, I am disappointed with Open Affair for they have increased the prices but the Quality of food hasn’t gotten any better.

Ratings:

Food: 3/5 – Good Food but wouldn’t come here again if the prices remain the same!

Price: 2/5 – Too expensive. Don’t mind paying but the food should live up to its price tag!

Ambiance: 3/5 – The outside section is too noisy but cannot blame them for the restaurant is right on Carter Road.

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The Bagel Shop, Bandra

February 1, 2010 1 comment

The Bagel Shop in Bandra is one of those places I have been wanting to visit for a very long time. Located on Pali Mala Road, it is hard to miss this brightly lit little place. Cozy is the world that comes to mind when you step inside. Bright yellow lights and the bright decor actually make it feel more inviting that it already is!

We grabbed ourselves a long sofa and a rocking chair for yours truly. Waited for sometime to come out and take our orders. But waiting tired us out so we went inside and grabbed ourselves a couple of menus. The Bagel Shop is divided into two section, the much bigger outer section where we were sitting and the inner section with limited seating space. The outer section is preferred by most people for its homely atmosphere.

While we are really liked the ambiance we were a bit stuck on things to order. Eventually ordered the Club Bagel Chicken. Have never had it before and was completely disappointed with it. Tasted like pita bread with humus and was nothing special to have spent INR 175 on it. Though Bagel is a popular choice of bread for Jews so a similarity with Pita Bread cannot be a coincidence.

Though I had no qualms about the quantity it, I didn’t think the bread or the salads were fresh! The chicken pattice inside was alright since it was minced chicken with all the masala in it (don’t think much goes wrong with mince chicken!). The Bagel seemed to be of the frozen type which I guess is acceptable if they do not make it anywhere here (or nearby the Bagel Shop).

It took us time to gulp down our food but we choose to stay back since all of us had a cozy little seat to keep us warm on a cold winter evening.

However, on a closing note, if this is how a Bagel is supposed to be I think I will avoid the place since it did not suit my taste buds. I rather have humus and Pita Bread as I like that better!  Though I may come here again for I loved the ambiance. We spent three hours here and didn’t realise it until after we left!

Yummies, Carter Road – Not really that Yummy but light on the wallet!

November 14, 2009 2 comments

Yummies is a small takeaway outlet located close to Rizvi College and is a favourite hangout of the college kids and passers-by. Mainly a Chinese eatery, it serves both veg and non-veg. I have been here a few times and tried out a couple of puffs, croissants and rice. Their rice items come in either half or full plate. The full rice plate is enough to satiate 2 gargantum tummies (tummies, yummies get it?) like mine. Though if one is only looking to eat something irrespective of the taste and other things, yummies is a good choice for its cheap takeaways. This is not the say the food is not good. But it is far more simpler and lacks the complex mixture of ingredients found elsewhere.

In my opinion, the rice/noodle items are one of the better ones here. One can try the items kept in the shelf but the problem with such food is that it stays in the shelf for a considerable duration. There isn’t anything else that I would prefer here if I was hungry except for the rice (Since I am not a big noodles fan).

Address: 36 A Rajan Apts, Nr Rizvi Complex, Off Carter Rd, Bandra West, Mumbai – 400050

Ph: +(91)-9833908045 | +(91)-(22)-26002467, 26040040

(The do home delivery in Bandra)

Merhaba – Gourmet Cafe

November 13, 2009 1 comment

Discovered this outlet while on my way to Turner Road through the bylanes of Bandra starting from Carter Road! Located in the quiet Sherly Rajan Road, it is not suprising that no one knew about this place. Since it was around 11 PM, most of the shelf was already empty with only a couple of chicken and mutton cutlets remaining. Giving them some company were the pastries which were at the other end of a very long shelf! This rectangular shaped ‘cafe’ doesn’t have seating space, making it essentially a takeaway or a free home delivery option (which it does have).

Now, you will not associate a takeaway with an extensive menu. Normally, what you see is what you can get but here its something different. An extensive menu, with exactly 250 items (They have numbered every item in the menu. Did you really think I would count all 250 of em??), makes me wonder how they can manage to offer so much. If you look closely at the menu, it is easy to figure out that this place primarily serves Lebanese.

Merhaba1

Merhaba2Alright then, since it was late night and most of the items were already over, I decided to try the Mutton Cutlet which was covered with Vermicelli – making it a crispy delight. The presentation was a bit different wherein the cutlet wrapped around a thin stick in a way similar to the way chikken tikka is served in the many takeaways in Bandra. The cutlet wasn’t a hit with my taste buds. Maybe it was because the cutlet was made in the Lebanese style – less oily and less spicy – which was a bummer! Though less oily is a winner in my book, less spicy isn’t!

Merhaba extensively serves Lebanese and is the first such place I came across which does so. Otherwise, for instance, for Falafels you need to go somewhere and for Shawerma somewhere else! I am definitely coming back to try out their many dishes on offer.

Update: Went again here and ate a chicken shawerma. The shawerma was strictly ok. The pita bread was baked just about right and wasn’t hard to chew. Gotta give them that  – they do  know how to bake a pita bread to perfection! Though the chicken was a downer here. A bit too try and overcooked! There was a paneer shawerma that my friend had and she seemed to like it thought I couldn’t get to taste it!

Address: No.4, Hardik Villa, Sherly Rajan ROad, Bandra West, Mumbai 400050

Ph: 9222384321 | 9222394321

China Blue – Chinese Hukka anyone?

November 7, 2009 Leave a comment

Suhail’s China blue as the name suggest is a Chinese restaurant which also serves Hukka (a first of its kind maybe?) but lo and behold there is Mughlai and Indian fare on offer as wel! Well that is not a problem really cause’ we were here to smoke some hukka! As suggested by a hukka specialist that I happen to know (what are the chances!), we ordered for a Grape Mint, a mixture of grape and mint flavours!

In the meantime while the hukka was being ready, we changed our seats to a more comfortable lounge like sitting area where one can spend hours smoking and not realise!! The hukka we ordered was for INR 250. It began all well but the small pieces of coal kept running out which got on my nerves. However, one guy, Bablu, who is  in charge of the top floor did manage to get us the big pieces of coal which lasted for like 30 minutes and was still going strong until some idiot changed the coal and again put smaller pieces in there! So here is a tip, if going to China Blue, please ask Bablu to change the coal for you. He seems to be far more experienced at making/serving hukka’s then the rest of the guys there!

Anyways, the hukka session was followed by a quick dinner which I couldn’t eat that time and had to get it parceled! Ordered for a Paneer Kadai and Roti. The food was really good but if only the pricing was a tad lower. We ended up spending INR 200 each (between two people) for the Hukka and the dinner. A bit on the expensive side though if in a big group (say 4 or more) then this is a must go to place for the food and the Hukka.

Comparison with Mezban Sheesha, Carter Road – Though Sheesha’s at Sheesha’s are costlier by INR 50, they are far far better as the flavour lasts a long time and the coal doesn’t need changing as often as at China Blue! Food is more expensive at Sheesha though its a bit bland. For a more spicy affair, China Blue is a better choice!

Address: Rays Chs Shop No 8/9 New Kantawadi, Towards Perry Rd, One-way from Sherly Rajan Rd, Bandra (W), Mumbai 400050

Rating: Ambiance – 4/5 (Excellent ambiance. Made to look like a Sheesha parlour with a lounge like area downstairs and more of a restaurant feel upstairs.)

Food – 4/5 (The food isn’t hot but spicy which I liketh. It isn’t like places where putting a few chillies means your food is now ‘spicy’!)

Price – 3/5 (The real downer here. Expensive for just 2 people!)

Gostana, Bandra – Huge Burgers!!!

September 27, 2009 1 comment

I heard about Gostana from a friend who was eager to try out the burgers here. So we both went along on a sunny friday afternoon along with another foodie to try out this small. First impressions were that the place is very small, looked much smaller than what we had thought, looking at the pictures. Anyways, we and two more patrons were to only customers there at that time. I think the place can seat around 15 people. We quickly got down to ordering a Chicken Steak Burger and an Indian Chicken Burger. What I liked about the order was that the food was made right in front of us which was a delight to watch. The staff was friendly as well and they were eager for feedback which was a good thing. The burgers arrived quickly and we got down to the business of hogging! The Indian burger was rich with spices, though thankfully, it wasn’t teekha. The Steak Burger was rather a plain delight. On a taste scale, I think Gostana Burgers fall behind those of KFC and McDonalds though on the nutrition scale I would like to think that Gostana leads the two MNCs by a fair margin! The burgers were priced at INR 130 (Indian) and INR 120 (Steak). A rather steep price for a burger but given its size (nearly three times the size of a McChicken) it isn’t to difficult to know why! However, I think the pricing is still steep, maybe a burger for INR 90-100 would have sufficed. A INR 90 burger at Mamma Mia is as filling s Gostana and there is no reason why I would want to pay more for a burger here! Overall, I think Gostana is a lovely place to hang out with a big huge burger. The location is nearly perfect and so are the burgers! If only they could reduce their prices it would make me wanna go there again and again!!

Grill Cottage

December 18, 2008 Leave a comment

Address: Next to Amore, Carter Road, Bandra (W), Mumbai

Tel: 9819530472

Full Review:

About the place:
Its a small outlet with 9 tables (including one which can accommodate a family of 10-15 easily). All tables (Except for the first two on the right) have seating arrangements where u can lie down and eat your food (if u wish too) or just cross your legs, slide back and relax on the round pillows and stare at the stars above you!. its a semi-open place but that’s what you would want in the sweltering heat.
The place feels like your sitting in a village in Punjab in the veranda for a nice cosy dinner. I might add, its a nice place to take your gal (or guy) for a delightful dinner thats not very hard on the pockets either.

About the food:

We first ordered for starters – Pepper Chicken. That alone transported us to what foodies would call ‘heaven’. For a change we could taste the pepper and the chicken tasted like no other.

Then we ordered for 2 half glasses of lassi (glad we ordered half cause its one huge glass!!!) the lassi was thick (but not too think), just the way i like it!
Next we ordered for a Chicken Lahori and 6 tandoori rotis. The quantity was good (a little too much after the lassi and chicken pepper though lol). But what the heck, if the food tastes so good, there is no harm in indulging. Though i though the tandoori roti was a tad smaller than the one i have had @ Pratap the Dhabba.
The cost: Pepper Chicken – 90
6 Rotis – 6*10 – 60
Half glass lassi – 2*40 – 80
Lahori Chicken – 90

Total – Rs.320

Another place added to my ‘To be Frequented often’ places. 😀