Sundays have become brunch days. Most people want to spend their Sunday afternoons chilling with friends over a good meal and relaxed ambiance. Especially after Saturday night’s drinking and debauchery. That explains the popularity of the Sunday brunch concept in the city. And so many restaurants cropping up with Sunday brunch buffets. The latest one I tried was D’Bell at Lower Parel.
D’Bell is situated inside the posh One Indiabulls Center, and it is quite a maze to get to. I had to encounter two security checks, a long trek through a parking lot and an endless wait for an elevator before I finally made it. I guess I took the back entrance but they definitely need more signage put up considering the number of restaurants in that row. This long walk surely worked up my appetite.
The interiors are fun and cheery. They have walls with assorted music and movie posters framed. Then there was this blackboard displaying the menu for today’s brunch. I personally loved these shelves filled with books, knick-knacks, souvenirs and this adorable tiny television. My favorite corner of the room.
Unless you’re living under a rock, you’ve probably heard of Maroosh. Famous for their wraps, rolls and shawarmas, in addition to their Mughlai fare, Maroosh is a popular post-partying-drinking haunt. Ideal for grabbing a roll on the move, they have established themselves as a popular Lebanese fast food chain across the city. In fact the owner of Maroosh, Ketan Kadam, decided to launch Maroosh because people were looking for a place to grab a quick bite after a night of partying at his famous night club.
The popularity of Maroosh over the years has recently led to them revamping the brand as MM! Maroosh. Mumbai Food Lovers were invited to the recent opening of their reinvented Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) at Bandra Reclamation. In addition they launch a take away at Shivaji Park, Dadar and kiosks at PVR Cinemas across the city, planning to have 30 revamped MM! Maroosh outlets by the end of this year.
The menu includes Lebanese food like shawarmas, falafel, hummus with pita bread, and Lebanese salads. Indian fare such as wraps, starters and a few mains are on the menu too. The restaurant is brightly done up in cheery yellow and white. I loved the fun vibe to the entire place. Even the food is served in kitschy wrapping paper, interesting take away containers and trays. They even have yellow Vespas to home deliver your orders. I loved the new feel to the place. This new look and feel is intended keeping in mind their idea for Pan-Asian expansion.
They’ve launched three new dishes to the menu, out of which, the Baked Falafel Wrap was my favourite dish of the night. Succulent falafel pieces, crunchy vegetables, and hummus that were enveloped in a wrap. Go try this new addition to the menu!
However, the Falafel Salad we tasted was not as good. It contained falafel, veggies, and hummus. I found the falafel a bit crumbly, and not as good as the ones I tasted in the wrap. The Paneer Shawarma was average. I wish the paneer pieces were a bit spicier. Overall the shawarma was slightly bland.
The Paneer Tikka Roll however compensated for this. Succulent, spicy paneer tikka pieces wrapped in a roomali roti and this was served with lovely, mint chutney on the side. I also loved the hummus platter with pita bread. Three hummus types: Garlic, Sundried Tomato, and Jalapeno were served in containers, which makes it perfect to eat on the go. All three went perfectly with the toasted Pita bread. The Sundried Tomato Hummus was exceptionally good, and we scooped off the entire dish.
The other new dish of the night was the Chicken Tikka Shawarma. I’m replacing my regular shawarma with this one. Perfect combination of two popular favourites: Chicken Tikka and Shawarma. The chicken in this was the perfect spicy, tikka flavour.
The Chicken Hummus Salad was all that is contained in a shawarma, without the outer pita wrap. So if you want to do the healthier version of a shawarma, this is for you. Not that this is too healthy, but still. (On a random thought I wonder if we get whole wheat shawarmas anywhere. Anyone knows?)
Another favourite dish of mine that night was the Chicken Bhuna roll. The chicken stuffing was similar to chicken makhanwala. So this roll was basically a portable Butter Chicken- Roomali Roti. Absolutely yummy, despite the excess oil.
Overall MM!Maroosh retains the qualities it was known for: easy, take-away, delicious, filling, Lebanese food. All of this in a revamped avatar! Sometimes, the sequel can be better than the original, as proved in this case. Maroosh or MM!Maroosh , we know where to get our fill of shawarmas and rolls late at night!
This blog is about Vietnamese food at a place called Pondicherry Cafe, in Bandra. Geographical disorientation, much? Vietnam has always been on my bucket list of places I want to visit. So when the Sofitel Hotel in Bandra Kurla Complex, hosted a Vietnamese food festival, and invited me to come sample some of the fare, I was elated. I could now cross off Vietnamese food from my bucket list. Vietnam nahi, khana toh sahi. Vietnamese food is known for using fresh, raw produce with tons of local seafood. The food is simple in preparation and taste.
The Vietnamese Food Festival was held at Pondicherry Cafe, Sofitel Hotel, BKC till the 3rd of June. The menu was specially curated and prepared by Chef Dao Van Son, Executive Sous Chef at Hotel Sofitel Saigon Plaza, Ho Chi Minh. We were lucky to not only get to taste his food, but also meet him and talk to him about Vietnamese food and his passion for cooking.
Pondicherry Cafe is done up with the most beautiful drapes, gigantic armchairs, and warm colors. In the middle of the regular buffet spread, we got a sneak peak at a traditional, Vietnamese food stall.