Variety

Sushi mangta hai

Aruna Rathod | Updated on: Sep 29, 2011

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Mumbai is hungry for exotic, globalised cuisine.

Mumbai and even its suburbs are craving international cuisine, with Japanese, pan-Asian and American food emerging the new favourites in vada-pav land. Discerning diners are more than willing to splurge on newer and exotic food combinations, and restaurateurs are reinventing furiously to tickle their palates.

Old favourites Chinese and Italian cuisine are making way for the new rage, Japanese food. New entrants like California Pizza Kitchen are fanning the metro's growing love for American food. The two outlets of T.G.I.F. (short for Thank Goodness it's Friday), the American casual-dining chain offering American, Mexican and Italian cuisine, have been popular for a while now among the shopping crowds in malls. For fast food, it's McDonald's that is popular at the malls with its simple menu and irresistible French fries. KFC's standalone restaurant on Bandra's Linking Road has its dedicated band of followers for its crispy chicken.

It is not only the city's commercial hotspots such as Nariman Point, Churchgate, Worli and, more recently, Lower Parel that are witnessing this globalisation of taste but even the far-flung suburbs and Navi Mumbai too. The star hotels in Navi Mumbai offer an amazing range of cuisine that are sought after by locals and visitors alike.

West1, the vibrant all-day diner at The Park, has an elaborate selection of international favourites. “People are now travelling all over and have acquired taste for European and fusion cuisine. Our offerings include French onion soup, Involtini of chicken with basil and gorgonzola, risottos, quesadillas, and t-bone steaks,” says Chef Harmeet Singh Nanda.

Some of the more contemporary dishes on offer are the rosemary-scented yellow pepper and smoked chicken soup, caper infused grilled Norwegian salmon and desserts such as White Chocolate Cheese Cake with Fresh Apple and Pear Chutney.

While Wasabi by Morimoto at the Taj Mahal Hotel, Colaba, continues to be Mumbai's best and most expensive Japanese restaurant, other popular options include Spices in JW Marriott and the multi-cuisine Tian café, at Juhu, that serves up delectable sushi. Origami at Atria Mall in Worli and Japengo Cafe at CR2 Mall in Nariman Point are the popular sushi spots among the mall-hopping crowds. Tetsuma in Colaba serves average sushi but the other dishes here are worth a try. “The only hitch is there are not too many options for Japanese food, and since most of the ingredients are imported one should be ready to shell out a lot for this exclusive cuisine,” says Rakeysh, a Mumbai restaurateur.

Asian Kitchen at Four Points by Sheraton, at Navi Mumbai, specialises in pan-Asian cuisine. Its latest attraction is the Seafood Market, which displays the fresh catch of the day.

“We decided to let our customer choose how he wants his fish cooked — Thai, Chinese, Indian, Continental, Italian or just leave it to the chef to give you his special,” says general manager Sumit Kant.

The menu lists a range of delicacies from South East Asia — from Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese and Singaporean to Thai, Burmese, Mongolian and Indian. Exotic starters include the Mushroom and Black Fungus Dumpling, Phe Mi Soup and the tried-and-trusted Miso. The Lemon Grass Stick Chicken, Satay Gai Rue Nuae and Koinsi Cheese are a good bet too. The main course features lip-smacking pan-Asian specialities Goong Panaang, Manakatsuo Pomfret, Dakalbi Chicken and Braised Treepan Vegetables. Rice lovers have a choice of Saigon Fried Rice, Clay Pot Rice and Mee Crop Latna. And sign off on a sweet note with Sweet Pumpkin and Sago or the Flambe Date Pancake.

The recent launch of JustEat.in, an online food ordering service, gives Mumbaikers another novel avenue to indulge their taste buds. Founder and CEO Ritesh Dwivedy says, “After our successful stint in Bangalore, we are looking forward to expand across India and Mumbai was easily our first choice, given the kind of hectic life people lead and the frequency of eating out.”

Published on September 29, 2011
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