Butters Tipsy Gastropub [Fort]

Butters Tipsy Gastropub is the latest addition to the sprawling pub and food scene in Fort. We visited BTG for dinner the other day and were mind-blown. Though they probably wanted us to be high and tipsy on their amazing (we hear) cocktails, we are high on the delicious food, tipsy and giddy with excitement and satisfaction.

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From the ambience to music, to food and drinks, Butters gets it right. A beautifully lit mesh of sorts greets you once you enter. As you step upstairs, the bar is what catches your attention first. A modish look overall, it is lit up and well stocked. Did we mention we are fans of how the lights jazz up the entire place? It is dimly lit and yet bright enough. The ambience makes you want to sit back and relax but the music makes you want to groove. The area is spacious and there are different options of seating available.

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The menu gives us quite a few options. Pick quick bites or chakna combinations and your drinking session is surely sorted. There are Indian snacks like bhajiyas, bhurji pao and drunken bhel. They have sandwiches, baos, burgers, pizza, pasta as well as Indian main course like naan and dal. The full package. They have made a name for themselves for their cocktails, but it is worth mentioning that their mocktails are equally good.

Here is what we got tipsy on, at Butters Tipsy Gastropub –

Bhaji Pao – Bhajiya pao with an option between kanda (onion) bhaji, methi bhaji or cheese pakora. We picked onion bhaji. Crispy fritters that were topped with a little chaat masala and served with a sweet-spicy mint chutney.

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Bhaji Pao

3 Cheese Sandwich 

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3 Cheese Sandwich

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sorry, were we supposed to describe that?

There is cheese, lots of it and three different types of it. Do you know how high that made us? So ya, excuse us if we forgot that we have to describe it 😉 😉

Cheesiness aside, (pun totally intended 😉),  the 3 Cheese Sandwich at BTG is heavenly and loaded for sure. The aroma of cheese coupled with butter made our mouths water. Must try! And it is served with french fries for added happiness and salad if by some cosmic mistake it made you guilty 😉

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Chef Lampok’s Paneer Satay

Chef Lampok’s Paneer Satay – Soft paneer that is covered with a thick layer of batter and grilled. It has a soothing lemongrass aroma and a slightly charred flavour. It was served with a peanut dip that was slightly on the sweeter side.

Lasooni Palak Paneer aur Naan – This dish features in the desi corner of the menu but it should feature in the Do Not Miss Out corner. Delicious is the word to describe this one. The strong aroma makes your mouth water and threatens the chances of getting a decent picture 😛

It is creamy and has tons of chopped garlic and onions to flavour it up. The paneer pieces are really soft and well marinated and the palak gravy is another level of goodness. Served with naan and papad, this is one meal you must have here.

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Lasooni Palak Paneer aur Naan

From the mocktails we tried Melon BullTropical Thunder and Gin Cin Apple Jack. 

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Melon Bull and Tropical Thunder

Melon Bull is a mindblowing mix of watermelon juice and red bull. It has a sharp taste and the chunks of watermelon add a little drama to it.  Tropical Thunder is a thunderous concoction of orange and pineapple juice, both in the right proportions to leave a strong punch. This one has a slight tart though grenadine adds a little sweetness. Loved this one too! Gin Cin Apple Jack is slightly on the sweeter side but a fine combination of apple juice infused with cinnamon.

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Gin Cin Apple Jack

We also tried the Orange and Strawberry Slush which is really good. They have arrived at the perfect balanced flavour of sweetness and sourness in this chilled drink. And the colours! Loved it.

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Orange and Strawberry Slush

The star of the dinner was the Raspberry and White Chocolate Mousse. My god what a delight this one was. Smooth in texture, not overly sweet and so delectable. The sharp tart of raspberry paired with the slight sweetness of white chocolate gave this heavenly dessert. We licked out spoons till they were spanking clean 😛 This one is definitely a must try at BTG.

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Raspberry and White Chocolate Mousse

Overall Experience: Lip – smacking food, superb ambience, groovy music and good service make BTG a must visit place.

Food 🙂

Ambience 🙂

Service 🙂

Butters Tipsy Gastropub – Google Maps

Butters Tipsy Gastropub Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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वranda [Pali Hill, Bandra]

When we think of the word veranda, our mind inadvertently takes us to that part of our homes (generally our grandparents’ homes) where we had the best memories. It’s where we sat all evening and watched the rain work its wonder and make everything magically beautiful, where we had the most heart-to-heart conversations and where we played as kids. This verandais one of the cosiest places in our memories.

Our intention was not to get you all nostalgic, the food at वranda will do it for us. Our intention was to just tell you, how beautiful and cosy veranda is. ‘Coz वranda is, it is beautiful, it is cosy, it is charming and it is definitely worthy of every praise you have heard about it.

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वranda is a creation to bring to us desi flavours with a videsi twist. वranda is tastefully decorated with pastel colours and bright floral prints, plants and flowers, beautiful lights and more. Art is deeply ingrained in every nook and corner of the restaurant. There’s chic upholstery, antique vases, bold doors, paintings that depict the many forms of India and Indian culture and more. वranda is a lovechild of an art gallery and restaurant if you ask us! It’s the perfect place for a cosy family brunch as well as a romantic dinner date.

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The menu is limited to serving Indian dishes with a modern twist. So if you are dreaming dahi bada, be ready to experience new flavours in this very simple dish. Heard of sun-dried tomatoes on your pizza right? How about sun-dried tomatoes in your kulchas? They have created delicious aberrations while maintaining the integrity of the core dishes, and that is what we loved about the food at वranda.

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There is another thing we were absolutely fascinated with – the menu is presented on a tab, with videos of dishes being prepared and plated. It got us exploring through the menu which then turned to rummaging. The videos are shot beautifully, and they just make you all the more hungry!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s what we gorged on at वranda –

Raja Dahi Verma – A filmy name for a fancy version of our beloved Dahi Bhalla chaat. Dahi bhallas or badas soaked in curd and sweet-tangy tamarind chutney.  It is served on a bed of green mint chutney and topped with potato salli. Baked yoghurt squares are delicious and soft and the pomegranate jam reduction has a sharp and sweet taste. The overall dish is on the sweeter side but we loved the medley of flavours.

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Raja Dahi Verma

Cottage Cheese Trilogy – Very soft malai paneer chunks, done in three delicious styles – fresh basil, spicy tikka/zafrani one and a saffron based marination. Each one has intense flavours and is delicious.

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Cottage Cheese Trilogy

Veg Seekh Kebabs – The seekh kebabs are soft and literally melt-in-the-mouth. The seekh kebabs have a very strong flavour of cardamom, almost to the point of shadowing other flavours. These are served on a bed of fresh chopped vegetables with a sweet-spicy mint chutney.

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Veg Seekh Kebabs

Rajasthani Gatta Nu Saak – Gatte Ki Sabzi and their delicious kulchas! They nailed the gravy and flavour of the sabzi. Mindblowing aroma and lip-smacking taste. Just the right amount of spices and it took us back to Nanima’s kitchen. The gatte (flour balls), however, were a little too firm, which is bound to happen given the short time allowed for preparation. These were served with sun-dried tomato kulchas and basil kulchas. A mini meal in itself. And did we mention that we are a fan of the tomato kulchas? You will be too, do try them.

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Rajasthani Gatta Nu Saak

Mix Berry Lemonade – A combination of strawberries, raspberries and lemon. It packs a punch with the tanginess. Loved it.

Chocolate Basil Lemonade – Yes, that was our reaction too. Chocolate and basil? In a mocktail? Are you sure? But be sure that you give this one a shot. It an amazing combination. First, there is the fresh flavour of basil and lemon and then slowly you get the chocolatey taste. Lemon and chocolate could be this good a duo, is difficult to fathom.

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Mix Berry Lemonade and Chocolate Basil Lemonade

Gulkand Chocobar – A dreamy preparation with lots of soft and airy chocolate mousse, bits of gulkand and thick, dense chocolate. It is the right amount of sweet with the gulkand adding a mind-blowing edge to it. Sugar coated fennel seeds add a fresh crunch to every bit. Just loved how smooth and light the mousse was. This is a must have at वranda.

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Gulkand Chocobar

Overall Experience – Delicious food, a delightful ambience and good service makes वranda a place you must visit. It may not be easy on the pocket but is definitely worth the money spent.

Food 🙂

Ambience 🙂 🙂

Service 🙂

वranda – Google Maps

Veranda Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Genuine Broaster Chicken [Bandra]

No, no, no….

That’s our answer to your questions that sound somewhat like – Have you turned non-vegetarian? Did you finally try chicken? Were you lost? 

But then, what were we doing at a place that is named Genuine Broaster Chicken you ask? Well to that we have an answer!

Genuine Broaster Chicken, without a doubt, boasts of insanely good chicken specialities (some of which were sampled by our friend and she nods in affirmation), but there is no dearth of option for us good ‘ol vegetarians. Everyone behind the menu curation, from the agency to Chef Harpal Singh Sokhi, have made sure to not made us feel left out. There is an equal mix of veg and non-veg dishes that are Indianised and made oh so yum! by the chef.

So yes, us being here is more than okay! In fact, it would be foolish for anyone to miss out on this place just because the name favours meat.

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We visited the Bandra outlet of GBC on a weekend and though we were amongst the first people at the restaurant, it was packed in no time! The ambience of this place is amazingly chic and quirky. Chicken humour and photo frames that are an ode to quiet a few American sensations – Captain America, Marilyn Monroe, et. al. cover quite a bit of the walls. There are baseball helmets that are used as bulb holders and also plant holders. Gunny bags and fairy lights add a charm to the ceilings. Even the table tops are covers with caricatures of Michael Jackson, Oprah Winfrey amongst others. The music is groovy and adds to the rockstar ambience.

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There is a well lit and funky looking bar area and different sitting arrangements to pick from.

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Orange Limer

 

 

Since we reached here after braving the scorching heat, we decided to order cooler and freak shakes first.

Orange Limer was slightly tangy and the orange flavour was overpowering. It was slightly on the sweeter side but had a welcome refreshing taste.

Jim Jam Strawberry Freakshake is a delight to dig into! Topped with Jim-Jam biscuits, chocolate balls that melt in your mouth, marshmallows and lots of strawberry compote, this freak shake is sinfully delicious.

It is slightly on the heavier side with lots of whipped cream, strawberry ice cream and more.

 

 

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Jim Jam Strawberry Shake

We called for Tex-Mex Franchos and settled to familiarise ourselves with the menu. Crispy french fries in cream cheese sauce and a tangy salsa sauce, topped with lots of chopped tomatoes, onions, jalapenos and olives. The salsa is really yummy and makes you go lick your fingers.

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Tex-Mex Franchos

 

We then called for the chef special Firangi Palak Paneer Dip. The description of the dish does not do much more than making us picture a spinach-cheese dip instead of hummus with pita bread. It does not do even a tiny bit justice to the delight that this dish is! Just to let people know what they should anticipate, I suggest the owners should add the word delicious before every word in the name. That is how good the Palak Paneer dip is! A cheesy and creamy dip with small chunks of soft paneer and lots of spinach. Spinach adds an amazing flavour to the dip but does not over power it. We are not exaggerating when we say that we licked the dip off the bowl.

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Firangi Palak Paneer Dip

Pro Tip: If you happen to visit this place, order for as many portions of the Firangi Palak Paneer Dip as the number of people you are, to avoid any casualties. And do this even before you settle down!😉

In our opinion, the restaurant should put this disclaimer on one of the walls! 😛😉

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Veg. Ghotala Khichdi

Riding high on happiness, we went for another special from the menu – Veg. Ghotala Khichdi. No please, do not make that meh face, ‘coz then you will want to punch yourself for making it! Ghotala Khichdi is a delicious biryani made with lots of veggies and also has soft paneer chunks. It is high on spices and so fragrant and flavoursome, that our mouth is still watering as we think about it. Cinnamon does wonders to the dish and this one is another definitely try items if you are a biryani fan.

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Chow Chow Noodle and Paneer Burger

Then came our Chow Chow Noodle and Paneer Burger – something we had our eyes on from the moment we were handed the menus! Chinese spiced noodles and crispy paneer based patties with mayonnaise and schezwan sauce. This one is lip-smacking though we personally feel it should have been a little high on the sauces.

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Chow Chow Noodle and Paneer Burger

GBC boasts of some delicious desserts, some epic combinations and fusions. We decided to go with the chef special and yet keep it simple, thus picking the Gulkan Muffin. The muffin served warm, had a slightly crusty outer layer and was toothsome. The centre was filled with Gulkand and yet it was not overly sweet. Totally loved it!

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Gulkand Muffin

A friend tried the Assorted Chicken Wings Platter and could not stop raving about them – the flavours were perfectly balanced and really good! Her recommendations – Butter Garlic Chicken Wings and Kung Pao Chicken Wings.

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Chicken Wings Platter

Overall Experience: We don’t know the chicken way to say it, but we came out thrilled! Amazing ambience and scrumptious food. The service is quick and friendly. The servers are well versed with the menu and are ready to help and suggest. The food is not overly pricey and is definitely value for money.

GBC is a perfect place to spend some fun time with you friends and family.

Food 🙂

Ambience 🙂

Service 🙂

The Battle: If what we said has not already made it clear, try going in a group and ordering one portion of Firangi Palak Paneer Dip. What will happen between you and your gang happened between us, only worse!

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Genuine Broaster Chicken – Google Maps

P.S.: There are two outlets of Genuine Broaster Chicken (GBC) in Mumbai (as of now) and they are planning to come up with many more. GBC is a QSR chain, yes, but the attention towards ambience, food, presentation and hospitality is impeccable. We only hope it stays the same!

Also, Broaster is a technique of making the fried dishes (especially chicken) in a way that they absorb up to 50% less oil and are really low in trans-fat content.

Genuine Broaster Chicken Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Mumbai Vibe [Khar]

Vibes Speak Louder Than Words

We are not sure who said this, but whoever did, probably had a place like Mumbai Vibe in mind.

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If we were to describe the vibes oozing out of this place in one word…..we wouldn’t be able to!

‘Coz this place is amazing, lively, charming, inviting and super happening! The colourful, bold prints and decor catch your attention and make you smile. The outside seating is super pretty and covered with colourful potted plants. There are swing seats at the entrance, couches, comfy seats and wooden bleachers to pick from.  Music is groovy, there is a large projector screen and a bar counter on the first floor.

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The place tries to capture the essence of Mumbai with quite a few knick-knacks that decorate the restaurant and in their food as you will find later.

We especially loved the small wacky and witty phrases associated with the various stations in Mumbai, framed like the station indicators at the platforms.

There’s Devil Wears Sanpada, Lage Raho Mumbra Bhai, Gharwali Borivali and more!

We could go on and on about each item that caught our eye, so let’s just say, this restaurant is kick-ass in terms of decor.

The menu is pretty spread out and includes salads, chaats, tacos, sandwiches and more! The mocktails or should we say Faux Cocktails are good too but most are a combination of fruit juices, a little more variety would not hurt. They also have detox options, freak shakes, coffee and tisanes.

We really loved the food at Mumbai Vibe and hardly found anything that did not live up to our expectations, they generally surpassed. The chaats here are a must try.

Here’s what added to the already amazing vibes we were enjoying:

Cheesy Onion Bhajiya with Green Chilli and Garlic Dip 

Crisp onion bhajiyas topped with a dollop of cheese and finished with lots of chaat masala and spices. These spices make your mouth water with the inviting aroma and do wonders to the mainstream bhajiyas. The combination is mind-blowing. Garlic chutney that is served with these is very spicy and delicious.

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Cheesy Onion Bhajiya with Green Chilli and Garlic Dip

Palak Patta Tempura Chaat Papdi

Batter covered and deep fried spinach leaves served with a Ragda chaat. The leaves are crispy and the Ragda is chick-pea based, loaded with veggies and made spicy by green chilli pieces. These are then topped with curd, spicy mint chutney and sweet tamarind chutney giving a perfect balance of sweet and spicy. Finished with sev and pomegranate seeds, this one is another amazing chaat here that makes you sweat with the spiciness and still long for another bite.

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Palak Patta Tempura Chaat Papdi

Vada Pav Sliders

What describes Mumbai better than the ubiquitous vada pav? These are small and medium spicy vada stuffed between super soft pavs/buns. There’s mint and coriander chutney, tamarind chutney, green chilli and red chilli powder..the complete package, Mumbaiya style!

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Vada Pav Sliders

Oven Roasted Exotic Masala Veggies Nanza

Pizza on a naan base. Thin and crispy base, topped with a tangy tomato sauce. Zucchini, bell peppers and lots of Mozzarella cheese and topped with olive oil, pepper and herbs. Perfect pizza, Nanza style.

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Oven Roasted Exotic Masala Veggies Nanza

Makhni Plate with Oven Baked Naan

When we thought this is as good as it can get, the chef blew us over with this dish! How good can Dal Makhani, Paneer and Naan be? Well, it definitely has to be this good! Crisp, thin naan served with dal makhani and a creamy paneer based dish. Dal was smokey and delicious and it was not at all heavy. Super soft paneer pieces in a slightly sweet tomato based creamy gravy which was spiced with black pepper and other herbs. Delicious is the word! Loved it! So glad we found this option among the mains pasta and risotto options!

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Makhni Plate with Oven Baked Naan

Butterscotch Espresso Rossogulla 

Imagine a strong coffee flavour mingling with delicious and smooth butterscotch ice cream. Groundnut Chikki added crunch and a surprising twist to this combination. Finished with a mint sprig, this fusion is a must try!

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Butterscotch Espresso Rossogulla

We also had a few mocktails –

Mumbai’s Finest which is a refreshing mix of pineapple and orange juice. Lemon adds tart while cinnamon gives it an amazing aroma.

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Mumbai’s Finest

Bandstand Love is a tangy sweet mix of strawberry, pineapple and lime.

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Bandstand Love

Mango Fruit Soda is basically Aamras or mango juice with soda and is skippable.

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Mango Fruit Soda

Mountain Detox is a blend of watermelon, orange, ginger and mint and all the flavours are well balanced. It is not very sweet and a good option.

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Mountain Detox

Overall Experience: Good vibes, scrumptious and lip-smacking food, prompt, friendly service and an amazing ambience. This place has it all!

Food 🙂

Ambience 🙂

Service 🙂

The Battle: First you fight with your gang over the amazing food and then you fight with yourself over having to get up and leave. And trust me, you are going to fight over that Dal Makhani and Paneer! Sooo epic!

They say your vibe attracts your tribe, well this place definitely has us in the permanent tribe!

Mumbai Vibe – Google Maps

Mumbai Vibe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Family Tree [Panch Pakhadi, Thane]

A Mumbaikar knows what a pain it is to travel to the Northern Suburbs from the Western Suburbs. It is a huge task to even come to terms with the time and energy one is going to dedicate, in order to just get here! Imagine the same scenario – Borivali to Thane and then, add say 1.2 hrs of mega jam to this, and you know the pain we went through!

But what if, we say it was totally worth it? Yup, you read that right! That commute was worth it.

Why? Because at the end of that dreadful journey was an amazing destination with a lip-smacking and appetising meal- Family Tree, Thane.

Family Tree is another amazing restaurant by Kabir Samtani and team that completely deserves all the praises that are doing the rounds these days. Amazing ambience, great hospitality and genuinely good food, so you know what we are talking about!

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Family Tree is a fairly new place with a cozy and homely vibe. The restaurant is sizeable with two AC sections – an indoor one with yellow lights and family sized tables and an outdoor one, comparatively bright owing to the large windows and has floral decorations and also has tables for larger groups. The moment you step in, the restaurant engulfs you in a warm fuzzy feeling. The ambience is perfect for every generation. One can see youngsters and oldies alike at the restaurant. Odd knick-knacks indoors that give an impression of a showcase in an old English home. There are books, picture frames, wall-clocks, metal artefacts, etc. placed on the wall cabinets. The chairs have faces depicting each family member and a menu that is a reminiscence of a photo album, add fun chapters to this family.

The restaurant is a multi-cuisine one and the menu is pretty spread out. European, Chinese, Indian…..there is something for everyone. Here is what made us smile even after that arduous commute:

Paneer Paprika – Soft pieces of paneer in a seasoned coating with papad-churi.  The masala is non-spicy and flavorful enough to not need any accompaniment but was served with a pesto-mayo dip. The combination is delicious and we gobbled up pieces after pieces of the starter. Totally different from what one would expect and without a doubt a nice surprise. Totally recommended!

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Paneer Paprika

Mexican Paneer Shashlik – Soft grilled pieces of paneer coated in a sweet chilli sauce. They are topped with a little cheese and served with a tangy salsa sauce.

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Mexican Paneer Shashlik

Pav Bhaji Fondue – The bhaji is delicious with lots of veggies. It is non-spicy and has a slightly smokey flavour. It is served with bite-sized pieces of crisp pav that were seasoned with mild spices and coriander.

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Pav Bhaji Fondue

California Potatoes – Baked potato skins with a tangy-sweet filling and loads of cheese. Delicious! It is served with a slightly sweet salsa and a sour cream dip.

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California Potatoes

Paneer Kurchan –Creamy and mildly spicy gravy, this is one of the best options from their North Indian mains. Extremely soft and succulent paneer pieces in a thick textured sweet-spicy gravy with lots of veggies, especially bell peppers. This one is perfect!

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Paneer Kurchan

Yellow Chilli – If we had to pick a favourite, this is it. Yellow Chilli is one of the recent additions to their already amazing menu and an insanely delicious one. Small palak based koftas that are stuffed with paneer. The gravy is creamy with a prominent flavour of turmeric. This is a must try dish! If you can save a little bit of the gravy from all the licking and ooh-ahhing, then it goes superbly well with the rotis (Indian bread).

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Yellow Chilli

Veg. Abu Dabhi – Another latest addition to the menu, this one is mix vegetable in a thick kofta-style gravy. The preparation has tons of veggies, prominently french beans and has a slightly smokey, spicy flavour. It is delicious!

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Veg. Abu Dabhi
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Paneer Kurchan & Yellow Chilli
We also sipped on a range of mocktails. They have quite a variety, from juice based mocktails, to chillers, to milk-based preparations and freak shakes.

Mango Basil Chilli – A delicious combination that leaves you sweating due to the spiciness. A sharp taste added by green chillies that suppress the sweet-sour flavour of mangoes. Refreshing, or should we ideally say awakening!

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Mango Basil Chilli

Grape Fruit Mojito – You remember those small half-moon shaped orange candies that we relished as kids? If ever, you are feeling nostalgic and want a taste of those, the this is your answer. That perfect orange-y flavour with a little more tang to it!

Mosambi with a splash of Ginger – Mosambi juice with a hint of ginger that adds a sharp sour taste and reduces the sweetness. Refreshing. This one is a must try if you are a juice fan!

Smoked Strawberry Chiller – This one is sort of a strawberry slush with a little tart. Refreshing and perfect for the summer.

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Smoked Strawberry Chiller

The desserts here are amazing too. We happened to try a few and seem to be confused as to which one is the best one!

Banoffee Pie – A whole load of happiness sits on a freshly made thick and crisp crust. The toffee sauce is to die for. The perfect combination of whipped cream atop thinly sliced bananas adding the necessary sweetness and flavour to the mind-blowing toffee sauce. It is then dusted with cocoa powder and served to kill you! Trust us, you cannot have just one bite! And it is so light!

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Banoffee Pie

Paan Ice Cream – When they said paan, they meant paan. Refreshing paan flavoured ice-cream rolled up in a beetle leaf with all the ingredients and sweet nothings that go in a meetha paan. This is then dipped in gulkand and covered in a silver foil and served with a cherry on top! Ideally, this should be called the cherry on top of every meal!

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Paan Ice Cream

Aamras with Vanilla Ice Cream – It is summer, the official season of Mangoes and aamras! And we could not leave the opportunity to try this one! Aamras in perfect, thick and not overly sweet and we loved this combination!

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Aamras with Vanilla Ice Cream

Overall Experience: We are going to use a small phrase to describe this – Family No. 1! Family Tree is a complete package and a complete family entertainer. Delicious food, warm service and great ambience. The food is totally worth the prices, which by the way will not burn a hole in your pockets!

Food 🙂

Ambience 🙂

Service 🙂

The Battle: The white dish in which the Banoffee Pie was served would have turned red due to the bloodshed had anyone tried to steal a bite from it!

Family Tree – Google Maps

Family Tree Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

5 Reasons you must head to Namak, Sahara Star for the Persian Food Festival!

You can’t just eat good food. You’ve got to talk about it too. And you’ve got to talk about it to somebody who understands that kind of food – Kurt Vonnegut

And you have to understand the amazing, lip-smacking and fragrant Persian food! Persian food is described as one of the world’s greatest gastronomies and the ongoing Persian Food Festival at Namak, Sahara Star brings home these intricate flavours.

Here are five reasons you should head to Namak, Sahara Star and treat yourself to these tantalising flavours:

  1. The menu is designed and curated by Master Chef Mujeeb ur Rehman and Chef Mona who hails from Iran. Every dish is prepared by them and under their expert guidance.
  2. The warm, cosy, and contemporary decor of the restaurant and the hospitality are impeccable.
  3. Some of the most iconic dishes of Persian cuisine are included in the festival menu.
  4. Gotab and Halwa-e-Sheer are to die for!
  5. Like all good things, this one is for a limited time only! The Persian Food Festival is from – 24th February to 12th March.

Here are some of the delights for our feast the other day:

Saffron Sherbet ≡ We were welcomed with this saffron, sugar syrup and mint infused sherbet. It is quite sweet but the flavours are well balanced by the addition of mint. And the fragrance was amazing! Chef Mona informed us that Saffron is a very integral part of Persian cuisine and is added to a lot of dishes for the fragrance and the flavours.

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Saffron Sherbet

Soup-e-Jao ≡ A thick, creamy and flavourful broth made with tomatoes and carrots with barley (jow) added. This soup ideally has chicken or lamb pieces in the traditional version, but the vegetarian version had potato wedges and mushrooms. Juliennes of carrots and parsley were also added. Parsley is very native to Persian cuisine and added a refreshing aroma to this delightful soup. The soup is quite filling and has a little tart because of the tomatoes.

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Soup-e-Jao

Panir Kebbah, Mavoha Tanur & Gharth Tanuri ≡ Panir Kebab is soft paneer (cottage cheese) marinated in yoghurt and just melted in the mouth. Chef Rehman believes that adding a lot of spices kills the authentic tastes of the food. The kebabs were flavourful in their own sense and needed no accompaniments.

Mavoha Tanur had fruits like pineapple, apple and pears, grilled and marinated in sumac powder. Sumac powder added a tart, lemony taste to the sweet fruits. The result was a saporous dish with intense yet well-balanced flavours. Apparently, like Saffron, Sumac powder is also used in a multitude of Persian dishes.

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Panir Kebbah, Mavoha Tanur & Gharth Tanuri

Gharth Tanuri (Gharch – Mushroom)  is soft, succulent mushrooms simmered in olive oil and mildly spiced. Though not very high on distinct flavours, this dish was just as delicious.

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Beetroot Dip & Mustard Yoghurt Dip

The kebabs were served with two dips –Beetroot Dip and Mustard Yoghurt Dip. Beetroot Dip is made with beetroots and chilli and has a sour-sweet taste. We assumed it to be tamarind, but it was the chillies and spices that added these flavours. So good!

Mustard Yoghurt dip is something else!

Spicy and creamy, I could totally eat this daily. Who am I kidding? I won’t be eating it, I would be licking it off the plates, which is what I was doing here, much to the embarrassment of others!

Paneer Fasenjan ≡ Paneer (Cottage Cheese) pieces in a mildly spicy gravy with walnuts. Pomegranates were added to enhance the flavour. The gravy is not like the regular gravy we are used to having. It tastes really good!

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Paneer Fasenjan

Khuresh Bamiyan ≡ This one is our favourite from the main course. A unique combination of crisp okra (lady finger), onions, and garlic in a tangy tomato based gravy. What added to the uniqueness was the crisp chickpeas thinly sliced and added on top! Scrumptious! Loved it with the naans as well as alone!

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Khuresh Bamiyan
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Dal Adasi

Dal Adasi ≡ The traditional black lentil dal, non-spicy and perfect!

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Naan E Barbari & Naan E Kirmani ≡ Persian flatbreads are thick traditionally. Naan E Barbari has a history behind its name that comes from – barbarian, foreign, uncivilised. Both the naans were crisp and filling. Turmeric and other spices are added and the naan is topped with black and white sesame seeds.

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Naan E Kirmani
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Naan E Barbari

Ghotab ≡ The desserts were just as ravishing as the main course. Ghotab is one of the traditional sweets of Persia/Iran. Flour halwa with lots of pistachios and almonds stuffed in a gujiya style pastry and deep fried. It is finished with powdered sugar, cinnamon and rose. The halwa was also served separately. So toothsome! The addition of rose petals lifted this sweet delight to another level!

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Ghotab
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Hibiscus Passion and Mint Fizz

We also tried Hibiscus Passion and Mint Fizz from the regular menu. The mocktails were simple, no show-sha, but refreshing! Hibiscus Passion is watermelon based with lemon wedges adding a tang to it while Mint Fizz has a refreshing combination of lemon, khus and mint!

Overall Experience: The meal was satiating and gratifying, to say the least.

Amazing hospitality, good ambience and a lot of information about Persian food delivered to us by the Chefs completed it!

Head to Namak soon and experience it for yourself!

Nooshe Jan! (Bon Appetit)

Food 🙂

Ambience 🙂

Service 🙂

The Battle: With so many flavours and items to try from, it is difficult to choose with the fear of losing out! And once chosen, it is difficult to put the spoon down!

Namak, Sahara Star – Google Maps

Namak - Sahara Star Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato