The Bombay Havelli
Mr. Batliwala’s Veg Dhansak at The Bombay Havelli
Located bang opposite Charni Road Station, this restaurant will take you back to the palatial Havelis. When we received an invite, we thought it was just another Thali restaurant. We were wrong and thank god we were. Little did we know that on the other side of their mahogany doors there awaited delectable food. We sat at a low rise table on the mezzanine seating area. You know it’s not just another Gujarati restaurant when they use vibrant colours on the décor and tapestry.
Our culinary sojourn started with Rajwadi Dhokli.
Crisp on the outside and lusciously tender on the inside, these sweet and sour cubes made for a lovely appetizer. We’re sure you’ve heard of Patra ni macchi. Probably even tried it. We found the vegetarian counter part here. Mr Batliwala’s Patra ni Paneer
came steamed, wrapped in banana leaves. The cottage cheese stayed firm yet moist and embraced the spices very well. By the time we finished our round of appetizers, we faced a dilemma: What do we order for the main course? We debated over several dishes and we chose Mr. Batliwala’s Veg Dhansak
. Although usually a non vegetarian delicacy, this dense lentil curry was just as comforting and wholesome. We really adored the presentation. It came in a wine bottle, cut vertically and placed on a wooden board. For dessert we munched on some Jalebi with Rabdi
. These crisp golden arcs of decadence went well with the soothing milky sweetness of Rabdi which had almonds in it.
We’ve read the restaurant serves culinary traditions perfected over three generations and that’s pretty evident.
If you’ve passed the road outside Raghuvanshi Mills, you must’ve seen a giant analog clock perched over the sign; Gymkhana 91. Modeled on the concept of Gymkhanas in Bombay, this restaurant echoes colonial vibes with the aptly done interiors. Along with the ample sunlight cascading through the roof and windows, the ambience retains the old world charm that this place exudes.
, button mushrooms stuffed with cottage cheese and spiced cheddar were a lovely start to our meal here. Next up was the Kuber Kulcha
and as we saw it on the menu, we wondered why the prefix ‘Kuber’. We learnt later that it was named after a child in Chembur Gymkhana who ordered it often. The Darjeeling Poached Pork Dumplings
and Curried Fish Dumplings
were next. Now, the city lacks these. So we thought, why not try them here?! Tender pork and fish encased in steamy, moist pockets pinched on the top were extremely comforting. We tried the Grilled Snapper
for our mains, a delicately seasoned fish grilled to perfection, tender but not squishy. It came in a butter sauce that teased the palate with the occasional hints of sourness. The mash that accompanied it was a delight too.
We washed our meal down with Mekong
, a delightful cocktail that was a mix of white wine, coconut liqueur and pineapple juice. It’s a glass full of tropical vacation. Admirals Move
was another great cocktail which has a dash of spice from the jalapenos.
We ended our meal with a Chocolate Volcano with Orange Zest
and a conversation with the owner, Aditya Hegde. The dessert was a rather evolved version of the usual choco lava cake. From ‘Kuber’ Kulcha to the interiors, Aditya Hegde condenses years of experience of catering to Gymkhanas and weaves it in the restaurant.
Bombay Cocktail Bar
Sharabi Aam Panna at Bombay Cocktail Bar
Located in the labyrinth of Veera Desai Industrial Estate, Bombay Cocktail bar is a chic new place to sip on some drinks and shake a leg. This place may be hard to navigate to, but it is easy to spot.
We walked through a circular setting to reach our table. They’ve created a luxe ambiance with the lighting, especially the semi circular booths and various levels of seating.
The menu seems to be replete with eats. We ordered the Sufiyan Mahi Tikka
, which probably is one of the best starters on the menu. Fish marinated in a spice mix with subtle undertones of mustard, smoked over coal, was a delight and we polished it off in no time. We loved the Sharabi Aam Panna
. How did a summer cooler sneak into the bar menu, you’d ask? This lovely drink is the usual Aam Panna, spiked with white rum, served with raw mango slices and garnished with star fruit. Next up was Sushi, which was rather dry to be wrapped around the nori and not as one would expect it to be. For those of you who adore the tropical climate, Coquito
is the drink for you. It’s a mix of rum, mixed with chocolate cream and coconut liqueur and comes topped off with cream. It is a lovely creamy cocktail that comes in a champagne flute. Chimichanga,
a deep fried burrito, is nowhere close to the original popular Tex Mex dish, but is adapted to the Indian palate. We dived into their street food menu as we were told it’d be better than the street food we’ve tried before. We chose the usual suspect: Pav Bhaji
. The dish was nothing different than the one that you get on the streets. Their Ghotala Bhurji
, on the other hand, was better. We loved the subtle use of spices and the liberal use of butter. We would’ve gladly opted for Chocolate Rum Mousse but unfortunately, it wasn’t available just like some other desserts on the menu.
The happy ending to our meal came in the form of Berry Cheesecake
, a supple and flavourful cheesecake that was sweet enough to satiate the need for dessert, unlike their Walnut Brownie with Vanilla Ice cream
For a chic cocktail bar, they serve really delicious cocktails, for when you want to unwind but the food unfortunately, is far away from doing justice to the robust culinary landscape of the Maximum City.
Photo Credits: Cryselle D'souza
About the Author