Bombay Brasserie has now Opened its Doors in Delhi at Cannaught Placeby Opinion Express July 6, 2018 0 comments
Delhi never ceases to amaze and now there’s yet another eatery that’s opened its doors for us all. After 15 years, Bombay Brasserie has come up with new ingredients from across the country. The New Worli eatery has Naga Ghost Pepper Wings, Jhinga Mirch, Cocktails & more, says Saimi Sattar.
White walls criss-crossed with copper pipelines that skirt around sketches of vegetables and spices, there is certainly a lot of detailing that has gone into the interiors of Bombay Brasserie’s newest outlet in Connaught Place. Despite that, the place appears to be fuss-free, with simple and clean sit-down corners and friendly bar perches. There is a lot going for the restaurant, which has launched its eighth outlet in the capital after successful stints in Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Pune.
If Shikha Nath, food and culinary director, is to be believed, this branch, like others, is aimed at drawing the younger generation towards Indian cuisine by contemporising it. But considering fusion tweaks and regional reprisals are now quite the done thing in Delhi, how will this outlet stand apart? More importantly meet expectations? Nath told us that they will use specific ingredients from faraway corners and use them to lend an accent in familiar, traditional dishes, which, too, have been slightly tweaked at times. So they have sourced aam papad from Amritsar to create the aam papad paneer or used the kudampuli, a black tamarind, in Red hot Kerala fish curry with turmeric rice.
Browsing through the menu, I realised that it touches upon almost every corner of the country and has some influences that have been brought in by recent immigrants. For example, the Shillong shapale, a minced chicken hand-pie with burnt chilli tomato chutney, is of Tibetan origin while the 1960s’ Atho salad makes use of street noodles made by Tamil Burmese immigrants. Nath has introduced five new dishes at the Delhi outlet and intends to keep on slowly expanding the menu while keeping truthful to the diner’s core strength of using Indian ingredients.
The bar menu, too, draws upon the vast repertoire of Indian spices. The “Paua” menu (so called because the drinks are served in quarter glasses) for instance, has additions like chaat masala to a whisky cola concoction called Janta bar. The Nagpuri santra has basil and oranges mixed with vodka.
But then, the menu is no guarantee of the taste, so I decided to sample the dishes. First up was The 6 chutney papad tokri with an assortment of aloo, urad and sabudana crispies served with six absolutely different dips. The highlight here was a chutney made with raw mangoes and Indian spices, the tang in no way subsumed to the overpowering accents of spice, both enhancing each other. The other chutneys were passable though.
This was followed by Gunpowder potatoes where the baby tubers were spiced with the home-made, Southern-inspired masala podi from Tamil Nadu. Juliennes of onion, capsicum added a crunchy texture to the crispy potatoes. The gunpowder, on the other hand, made it a hot and spicy mix of a starter, which is sure to satisfy the palate.
In the non-vegetarian starter category, I had the Rajputana soola kebab which is inspired by the dishes that the cooks of the desert state whipped up while on a hunt. It was made with coarsely ground, robust spices which added an extra kick to the dish. So I could actually feel the bite of the coriander seeds, which elevated the soola from its traditional method of preparation and taste.
Next up was the piping hot Chilli cheese kulcha, an ode to Bombay’s famous chilli cheese toast. While they looked fluffy and light, when I picked these up, the weight seemed to defy the mini size and I soon found out the reason. One bite and melted cheese started oozing out of every pore. Though heavy, I had no qualms about polishing off one entire piece as it scored high on the taste index.
In the mains, I had Bombay dabba gosht which easily was the best dish of the day. It had melt-in-the-mouth mutton spiced with masala topped with a sunny side-up, a swell of protein goodness. Part-colonial, part-familiar, it was wholly representative of the melange of cultures that is Bombay, the concept. While the masala was blended to perfection (I certainly had difficulty isolating each) the dish was made interesting by the addition of crunchy baked pastry strips. The amalgam was just perfect. In the vegetarian mains, I chose Paneer sirka pyaaz where cottage cheese was cooked with vinegar-soaked pearl onions (a staple at most dhabas), in a masala tempered with cumin and chillies. While the concept was interesting, the dish paled in comparison of the Dabba gosht. Needless to say, when I went for seconds, the non vegetarian was what I dipped into.
However, unlike the rest of the meal, the dessert was a bit of a disappointment, largely on account of a personal preference. I had Ras-e-aam where a rosogulla was drizzled with an aamras relish made from Alphonso mangoes. Coming from the UP mango belt, hapus, despite the hype and soaring prices, is not my mango of choice. Ever. But then there are others who swear by it. If you have time and space in your tummy, then do go for the Bombay Ice-cream Sandwich, which is a mix of Jim-Jam, Parle G and Bourbon biscuits to find the right closure to a near perfect meal.
Writer: Saimi Sattar
Courtesy: The Pioneer