In one word if I have to describe this place, it would be AWESOME! Enfield Bikes, Good Food, and A Great View, what more can you ask for, still if you want more, Enfield Garage Cafe organizes regular events to keep you amused. The Sunday Stories especially is a very popular weekly event that happens at Garage Cafe.
Overlooking the Baga creek, this cafe is a part of the Enfield showroom and this makes it even more interesting. They have indeed a huge space which looks very inviting to spend long hours chilling there. In fact, I could simply carry my laptop, breathe in the fresh air, enjoy scrumptious meal and drinks and keep looking with drooling eyes towards the numerous Enfield bikes parked there.
Well, the food here is straight up basic, something that probably everyone can enjoy. Nothing fancy, but super delicious! We tried the following:
Spinach and Mushroom Crepes– super-thin crepes with a creamy filling of spinach and mushrooms- I really liked it
Buffalo Mozzarella and Pesto Pizza– this is definitely a must try, my sonny boy enjoyed it the most
Beef Stew– I thoroughly enjoyed dipping the bread on this flavourful stew with such tender pieces of beef. The meat was really very good. Simple recipe, great taste
Pan Seared Prawns– Have to be my favorite from the afternoon, subtle flavors but delicious
I found the place moderately priced and given the fact the portion sizes are quite good, I think it is affordable. The average cost for two people would be Rs 1200/-.
I thoroughly enjoyed my lunch at this beautiful cafe and loved everything about it. Do let me know about your experience if you have already visited or will visit now after reading my blog 🙂
House # 560, Villa Rodrigues, Arpora-Baga Creek Road, Arpora, Bardez, Goa
The word Thaal is iconic with the Bohra Cuisine and hence full points to Rumama Roowala for naming her restaurant ‘Thaal’.
Little Bit Of History
Bohra Muslims, who are said to have migrated originally from Yemen to Gujarat, are firm believers in the maxim: “The family that eats together, stays together.” The entire Bohra family dines out of one platter called the thaal and it typically accommodates 4-8 people. Each dish is placed in the centre of the thaal and every member pulls his or her share. Bohras have a no-wastage policy. Not a single grain of rice is left on the plate when it is taken away.
To promote this thought and keep the tradition alive, Rumana came up with the idea of ‘Thaal’ as she too believes in community eating and bonding over food.
Location and Ambiance
Thaal which is located right opposite the Coco Beach on the Reis Magos Fort Road has both indoor and outdoor seating options. The indoor option with its low floor seating is where the traditional thaal is served. For savoring a thaal, you need to be in a group of minimum 3-4 people, otherwise, you could sit in the outside area and enjoy the smaller versions of thaal called thalis.
We chose a lazy Friday afternoon for our lunch at Thaal. Since we were just two people, me and my son, we opted for thaalis and sat down in the outer seating area that oversees the coco beach. It was a bright, beautiful and breezy afternoon, perfect to enjoy a great meal. The view was great too, I anyway am the happiest around the sea.
Coming to food, we ordered two thalis for ourselves, one can choose between the starters, but the main course changes on a daily basis. But we were lucky and got to savor two different main course dishes as well. As per Bohra tradition, the meal usually begins by tasting salt which acts as a palette cleanser, it is then followed by a dessert, they consider it auspicious. So keeping with the tradition, I started by eating my dessert first, the Kalamra, which is basically sweetened curd and rice with lots of dry fruits in it. It was quite nice, after this I came to the Channa Batata, a salad with chickpeas and potatoes tossed in nice tangy tamarind chutney and the best part was some fried onions on the top, they enhanced the overall taste so much.
My starter included the Bohra Chicken Cutlets, these were simply amazing, crispy coating on the outside and almost melt in the mouth soft on the inside. Subtle flavors and a perfect texture, these definitely are worth trying.
My son’s thaali had Keema Pao as a starter and that too was excellently prepared. The Keema was delicious and the Paos soft and buttery, it made for a perfect combination.
For the main course, while I got to try Daal Gosht with Rice, my son had Gosht Biryani and both these dishes were mind-blowing. Especially the Daal Gosht is one dish that you definitely should not miss. The mutton pieces in both the dishes were extremely juicy and tender and that speaks for the quality of food. The biryani was Kacche Gosht Ki Biryani, which means that everything is cooked together and that’s one of the prime reason for getting out the best flavors. All meat is marinated overnight and slow cooked for about 4-5 hours and this explains its tenderness perfectly.
To finish my meal, Sheer Khurma, the dessert made with sweetened milk, dates, vermicelli, and loads of dry fruits was just perfect.
So I highly recommend it to both my Goan readers and friends and my readers from across the country and globe that when in Goa, this place should definitely be on your list.
The moment someone says Mexican, I imagine cowboy hats, a raw appeal, some Guns and Roses type music and Nachos! So it was about time we explored this Tex-Mex Restaurant & Brewery in our very own Goa, and hence Habanero happened. Living up to its name, Habanero, which means North America, looked every bit Mexican. I especially loved the vibrancy of the place, the bold colors of lamps and those big Mexican hats adorning the tables. It has a picnic table kind bench seating, which gives it a very appealing look overall. You feel as if you have entered a happy zone and this seating enhances the experience. They usually have live performances quite often and there is a decent size stage where it happens. Unfortunately for us, it was only instrumental music, but anyway the place seemed lively enough. As we settled down, the first thing we did was to pick up those hats and of course, pose and get some pictures clicked 🙂
The lady manager at the Restaurant was a very warm person and came forward to both welcome us and then also suggest the must-haves. So going mainly by her choice we ordered:
Macho Nachos, Chicken
Fully loaded with chicken, tomatoes, beans, jalapenos, olives, melted cheese, sour cream and guacamole, these were simply the best. Rated amongst their signature dishes, I would say it does full justice to it. I have eaten loaded nachos at a lot of places, but topping it with sour cream and guacamole was an add-on that I had just at this place.
Sesame Shrimp Lime Tostada
Lightly grilled shrimps, cooked with a sesame lime sauce on a bed of lettuce leaves and salsa on a crispy tortilla, it made for an interesting dish. Totally worth indulging.
Chipotle Chicken Skewers
I totally loved these, grilled chicken chunks in sweet and spicy chipotle sauce. The first bite may feel more on the sweeter side, but as you eat, you feel the chipotle spices doing the work. I quite enjoyed this sweet and spicy combination.
There were 3 beers served as a part of the sampler, IPA, Lager and Mango Wheat, of all three I liked Lager the best. IPA was ok, but the Mango Wheat did not leave me with any mango flavor.
We were so full with the starters, that main course almost confused us. We glanced through the entire menu, shifting choices between Burgers, Tacos, Mexican Rice Bowl and Pork Ribs. All of them seemed appetizing enough to order, but we weren’t sure if we would be able to finish. Hence after a lot of deliberation, we settled for a Mexican Thali. Yes, even Mexican menu has a thali, though reading the word thali with Mexican food, didn’t quite gel well for me, but it made me all the more curious to see what was it all about and how was it served.
Well to be honest, when I saw the thali, I was disappointed. I understand that thali concept basically means getting to try a little bit of everything and we are normally used to seeing traditional thali’s in many cuisines, but with Mexican, all I expected was at least a different presentation. A typical steel thali with compartments didn’t do justice to this cuisine. I was quite put off with that, the food did not look appealing at all presented that way, neither did it look Mexican. It’s my heartfelt suggestion to the management, that even though the concept is great, it would be better it items are presented in some other manner, more like a combo than a thali. Taste wise the food was very Mexican and alright, but the presentation kind of ended the game for me, as far as the main course was concerned.
Fried Ice Cream
This was nicely done, but the outer covering does have a scope of improvement, it should be slightly thinner, the quoting was too thick.
Tres Leches Cake
This definitely was a very soothing experience, both of the eyes and the mouth. It looked beautiful and tasted equally good. Again a small suggestion here would be to not sprinkle too much of cinnamon powder on the cake, as it takes away the subtle taste of buttercream cake dipped in milk.
Overall the experience was not very great but wasn’t bad either, it was good, and I can surely give another chance to the place because I enjoyed the starters and my drinks.
Normally, we don’t think of a lifestyle shop and food together, for most of us they are two different things and we have to go separately for eating and shopping, but If I tell you about Artjuna, it offers more than just food, its a perfect place to shop apparels, fashion accessories and even furniture, yes you read that right, Artjuna has all this and a lot more to offers its visitors.
Right from the entrance, the warm vibes engulf you, the place has such a colorful and vibrant feel to it that one can simply spend hours chilling there. I am sure once you step in, you make up your mind right then, that you don’t want to leave soon. It’s a place that holds your attention and keeps it intact until you leave and even after that. For me, Artjuna has been a wholesome experience. The Bohemian fashion apparel, accessories, and furniture is something that Moshes and his wife Anastasia, two passionate people who own the place, have collected over the years. Their love for art and classy things is evident in their collection. If you really take a closer look at the items on display, they give you a feel of a very personalized collection, it’s not that they have just picked up anything and everything to fill up the place, but its a very selective and tastefully placed collection.
An old Portuguese house that has been converted into this lifestyle shop and restaurant also houses a decent sized library for book lovers and also a place for yoga and recreation.
Coming to food, Artjuna takes great pride in not just saying but maintaining high-quality standards in all their food items. They strictly use fresh farm produce, seasonal vegetables, extra virgin olive oil, imported tahini and wild honey to prepare healthy meals. They serve Meditteranean, Israeli and Lebanese cuisines. This garden ambiance adds to the overall appeal of fresh serves and healthy food. Every juice that you order at Artjuna, is prepared right after you order, nothing is pre-prepared and kept and hence the freshness is always guaranteed.
I began my culinary experience by ordering a Watermelon Salad with Feta, as it has been one of my all-time favorite dishes and Artjuna totally lived up to my expectations. The best part was the Feta, it was perfectly balanced and not over salty as most of the places serve. To go along, I settled for the Energiser, a combination of beetroot, carrot, orange, ginger and some cinnamon which gave the kick to this fresh juice.
Followed this up with a Mazzet Plate, served with Pita Bread, this platter had a perfect selection of Meditteranean flavors, with a smooth tahini, greek kalamata olives, olive pate, feta cheese and mixed vegetable pickle. It makes for a really delightful dish and is surely a must try.
Baba Ganoush was another dish that I tried, flame roasted eggplants, creamed into a thick paste with tahini, and seasoned with lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil, this makes for a flavourful dip to enjoy with pita and I loved it. The creaminess was almost mouth melting.
A chocolate fondant cake with vanilla ice cream and a chocolate eclair is what made for the amazing desserts. The cake was so soft and fresh, that the quality of the products used was once again brought to notice.
The place has its own charm and I insist on a visit at least once, the second time you would not require any conviction from my end :). The food, the ambiance, the warm people, the lifestyle shop, the books and a couple of dogs and cats will give you more than you need to enjoy a day out. Trust me on this one, not that you shouldn’t trust me on others ;), but do give it a try, it will be worth your while.
As far as I am concerned, I enjoyed myself thoroughly and look forward to visit the place soon again. Let me know what you think about it, have you visited it yet, or is it on your list now?
To get your tryst with luxury and enjoy some awesome food, head straight to PVR Director’s Cut in Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj and I am sure you will fall in love with it.
Though PVR Director’s Cut is a cinema hall and operates largely on membership, it has two stand-alone restaurants, that anyone can walk into.
Simply Sushi, is a state of the art Japanese Cuisine restaurant, spearheaded by internationally renowned Chef Yutaka Saito, who understands the nuanced Indian palate and has introduced innovative offerings on the menu, under the guidance of Chef Mayank Tiwari, Group Executive Chef of PVR, who is a celebrated chef in the culinary world of International cuisine.
I began my culinary experience by trying the Salmon Carpaccio and it was utterly delicious. I polished off the entire dish on my own. The taste was subtle and very very soothing on the tongue. The light tanginess added more depth to the overall flavors and I loved it.
The next I tried the Avocado Tartare, which will remain one of my most favorite dishes at Simply Sushi. It was delectable beyond words can justify. Such creamy texture, such rich flavors, loved it. Along with it I also tried the Tofu Spinach and this too was an awesome tasting dish.
Coming to Sushi, I tried the Spiced Tuna Rolls and Salmon Rolls and enjoyed them both, but preferred the Salmon Roll more over the other.
But let me tell you something, Simply Sushi is not just about food, it is about an overall experience. The charm of sitting over the counter and watching the chef prepare sushi right in front of your eyes, the luxury and class that the ambiance engulfs you into and who knows you might get lucky and bump into a celebrity or two as PVR director’s cut is all about the Creme Dela Creme of Delhi. And yes I did bump into Smriti Irani and her husband, while I was relishing my meal at Simply Sushi.
After Simply Sushi, it was time for desserts, and for that, I just hopped on to the other outlet of PVR Director’s Cut, L’Opera. Inspired by French designs, this patisserie looks very classy and rich. The pastel colors, the furniture design, remind of you of French Colonial Cafes. Also, this outlet at Vasant Kunj, leads in a fact that there are about 3 desserts that you get to eat only here and nowhere else. One such was the chocolate hazelnut with baileys, it was a truly mouth melting experinec with burst of flavours in my mouth. The chocolate, the hazelnut and of course baileys, its definitely a must try. They offer some savoury items as well and are in particular known for their wonderful sandwiches. All I can say is that both these places within PVR Director’s Cut are completely worth a visit and since they no not require membership, you must pay a visit.
Some places offer great food, while some offer experience, very rarely we come across places that offer food which not just food, but a wholesome experience. Coincidently, I have felt this at two places and its no surprise that both these places come from the same group. Masala Library by Jiggs Kalara was my first such experience where in I felt that its not just about food, but everything put together, and now my second experience came when I recently visited Bo-Tai. Conceptualised by Zorawar Kalra, this restaurant offers all the ingredients be ranked amongst the top. The ambience is perfect, very classy and refined, the hospitality is top notch, from the moment you enter, you are entire experience is personalised. The staff attends to you with utmost care, attention and knowledge of food and drinks.
The presentation of food is commendable and the most important thing, the taste is unmatched. Bo-Tai is a Thai speciality restaurant and it truly serves the best Thai food in the city.
Here are some of the highly recommended dishes
Scallop Carpaccio- A mouth melting experience, the scallops were just so delicious.
Crispy Caramelised Raw Mango Prawns- These are definitely a must try, super scrumptious prawns and that tangy taste of raw mango was just perfect.
Chicken Florets- True to their name, these blue coloured chicken dimsums in chilly oil were delectable.
Duck Sausages- The best dish I had, the sausages were simply mind blowing and the duck meat was so soft and juicy. The pumpkin dip and baked mashed potatoes as accompaniments enhance the taste greatly.
Lamb Satay- One of the finest satays that I had in recent times, you cannot afford to miss this dish, and the peanut dip too wasn’t the regular type and was really delicious.
Lamb Chops- Utterly delicious and succulent lamb chops, totally worth a try.
Masamman Curry- So when we talk of Thai curries, this curry usually sets the benchmark and I have to say that this was perfect. Served with Steamed Rice, they completed my meal.
Dessert- You have to try to believe how delicious it was.
Also for dessert you can try the Caramelised Banana Cocktail, it was just too good.
Me and my son had a great time enjoying this scrumptious food and overall experience at Bo-Tai. Highly recommended. Do share your feedback if you happen to visit.
A warm and cosy place overlooking vast green patches, a lady who cooks with lots of love and passion and the food that is simple yet amazing is what Laila’s Cafe all about.
Located at the Anjuna-Vagator road, Laila’s Cafe has been around since a few months now. Laila, who belongs to Hyderabad originally, had a dream to take its cuisine to different places and Goa became her new home. She wanted to introduce people to the authentic Hyderabadi cuisine and started curating special menus for home deliveries. Her home deliveries met with a great success and further encouraged her to open up a cafe. Her cafe serves Hyderabadi cuisine primarily and has a daily changing menu. She makes the weekends even more special by preparing some typical Hyderabadi delicacies. She balances a couple of Hyderabadi dishes with 2-3 North Indian dishes as well, in order to give variety and choices to the customer.
This weekend, we dropped by at her cafe as she hosted an EID special lunch. The menu comprised of:
Mutton Haleem- Haleem originated as an Arabic dish with meat and pounded wheat as the chief ingredients. It was introduced to Hyderabad by the Arab diaspora during the rule of the sixth Nizam and later became an integral part of Hyderabadi cuisine. Haleem is a stew composed of meat, lentils and pounded wheat made into a thick paste. It was served with fried onions and lemon to add that zingy flavour. I relished the same with a hot parantha.
Biryani- Biryani is popular across the country and every region has its own way of preparing it. That day we tried biryani which was primarily with Bangalorean flavours. Tasted very well.
Chole- A typical punjabi style of chole, which were savoured with paranthas.
Shahi Paneer- Another North Indian delicacy prepared to perfection.
Pulao- A simple pulao to go along with chole or shahi paneer.
Sheer Khurma- A traditional sweet prepared with vermicelli and milk, it was heavenly. I could have polished off 2 bowls of the same easily, but refrained myself from doing so. Its one indulgence, you will love.
Overall, I had a lot of fun and enjoyed my feast at Laila’s Cafe. Laila is also passionate about fashion collectibles and hence she showcases her collection along side at the cafe. So not only you can indulge in eating good food, but also indulge in some quick shopping. Do drop by and let me know how was your experience.
The native cuisine of the Naga people, Nagaland food comprises primarily of Meat and Fish which is usually either smoked, dried or fermented. The use of chillies is exceptionally high in the cuisine especially the world famous Bhut Jolokia. Replicating such traditional food and retaining authentic taste always comes as a challenge when exploring the cuisine outside the region, but Nagaland’s Kitchen has completely emerged as a winner in this case. They have not just replicated the dishes, but also taken utmost care to retain the authenticity of tastes by sourcing some of their ingredients right from the base region.
I recently went to explore the cuisine, which I had only heard about and I would say that in spite of having a lot of apprehensions, I found myself really enjoying the Nagaland food. Like mentioned above, smoked food is a traditional way of cooking in Nagaland, and they enjoy their meats and veggies with a smoked flavour. This particular style of cooking was brought alive at the Smokey Delight Festival at Nagaland’s Kitchen.
The ambience of the place was warm and comfortable and the festive vibes to it as Christmas is just around the corner. I was welcomed with a Jolokia Vodka Shot, with a word of caution. Yes you read it right, a word of caution here is imperative at Jolokia is one of the spiciest chillies found in the world, and this vodka shot was infused with the same. But I was really up for the challenge and wanted to try it out for sure.
So as it was a shot, and meant to be had in one shot, I gulped it down, I would say it wasn’t as spicy or bad as I was warned about. It surely hits the back of your throat and stomach for a few seconds, but thats about it. The best part was that it did not have any after taste, so i didn’t feel the spicy sensation on my tongue at all.
Coming to food, I started the culinary experience with a very nice Soup, it was available in both Smoked Pork and Smoked Chicken option and I settled for Chicken. It was called the Amrosu Soup and I found it perfect for that chilly winter evening. The taste of the soup was mild and the smoked chicken enhanced its flavour multifolds, I really enjoyed having it. Up next was Smoke Chicken and Dry Bamboo Salad and it too was very well prepared. I loved how the other flavours were kept mild in this too and the smoked chicken did its wonders yet again. Smoke Pork with Dry Bamboo Shoot was another amazing preparation.
In starters I tried Smoke Chicken Chilli and Pork Chilli, though I am not too fond of pork, but trust me, one bite into this and I could not stop myself. It was so so delicious.
The main course offered Smoke Chicken, Smoke Dry River Fish, Smoke Pork Anishi and Smoke Eel. I restricted myself to pork and chicken, but those who fancy having a dried fish and eel, should definitely try it here. Served with sticky boiled rice, both the dishes in gravy were tasteful.
For desserts, I had the traditional plum cake, which was prepared keeping the festivities in mind.
I would say, I had an extremely pleasant and wonderful culinary experience at Nagaland’s Kitchen and its one place that surely is worth your time and money.
Chaayos is almost a synonym for a tea cafe, there is no one better when it comes to serving hand crafted and blended teas and that too keeping in mind the Indian taste buds. For most Indians tea is their fuel to keep going, and you just can’t afford to go wrong with it, and Chaayos has really carved its name across the minds of tea lovers.
Not just tea, but Chaayos has always came across as a notch above the rest even when it comes to tea accompaniments. The sweets and savouries are just perfect always. What I personally love about their menu is the seasonal changes that they bring. Be it summers, monsoons or winters, Chaayos always brings in something special in their menu, which makes the visit to their outlet worth while.
With the winters setting in, Chaayos recently added 9 amazing menu items keeping the season in mind. With 2 varieties of tea, 2 desserts and 5 savoury items, the menu is a perfectly balanced one.
Gur Wali Chai and Tulsi Green Tea are the perfect companions for a breezy winter morning, afternoon or evening and you just can’t afford to miss it. Personally I found the Tulsi Green Tea extremely refreshing and comforting to the throat. Relish these teas with Paneer Bhurji Bun, which was an amazing preparation. Paneer bhurji loaded on soft buns makes for a delicious dish, I loved it. The Chicken Cutlet and Mutton Cutlet also need your attention as they both tasted really good, though again going by a personal choice I would any day prefer the Chicken Cutlet over Mutton. The Chicken Cutlets were nice, crispy on the outside, and soft and spicy on the inside.
Butter Chicken Kulhad with Masala Kulcha was another great preparation. Soft and succulent chicken chunks in rich tomato gravy served with masala kulchas made for an interesting combination and must be tried.
The best was the Open Keema Parantha, trust me you cannot have enough of this scrumptious dish. An open lachha parantha loaded with well cooked keema and some cheese is just what you need to comfort your taste buds. Simply done and simply delicious. Though eating it becomes a little messy, because its made and cut like a pizza, but because the parantha is soft, it keeps folding and you end up dropping the keema, but if you actually fold it right at the start and enjoy it as a small roll, you cannot go wrong, and also who minds getting a little messy when the food is so delicious.
The desserts too were simply done and yet very very tasty. A warm chocolate lava cake and banana-walnut cake, both of them were really good. Whereas the chocolate cake oozed out warm chocolate from inside, the banana-walnut cake was extremely soft and comforting.
To try this new menu, we went to the newly opened CP outlet and trust me this is one outlet of Chaayos that you shouldn’t miss visiting. Its by the far the most spacious and creatively done outlet. The vibrancy and energy of the place takes on you completely, and whether you wanna catch up with friends on a cup of tea and snacks, or a quick business meeting, or if you are alone and make tea and laptop your companion, this is the place for you. So for the place that it is and for the teas and food that they serve, Chaayos is a must visit place, so what are you waiting for..??
Masala House serves as a perfect place to tantalise your taste buds with some Modern Indian Cuisine. Each and every item on the menu feels like hand picked and curated with a lot of dedication and detailing, both in terms of taste and presentation. Spread across two floors, the ambience is comfortable, cosy and inviting enough for you to spend some relaxed time gorging on good food in company of your family or friends.
Katafi Wrapped Achari Arbi and Asparagus Paddu were the first ones to appear on our table, one look at them and my confidence in the taste increased multifolds, as both the dishes looked extremely tempting. Even taste wise, both of them were great. I am not a big fan of arbi otherwise, but this one was really nicely done.
Dahi Kebab, Murg Luqmi, Kadi Patta Jheenga and Dill Salmon Tikka were the other starters we tried and again all of them were delicious. I personally enjoyed the Murg Luqmi and Dill Salmon Tikka the most.
Coming to the main course, there was a wide variety to choose from, but our selection included Amritsari Wadi Tarkari, Khatti Tadka Dal, Palak Moti, Pota Kaleji Shitake, Bafat Masala Fish, Moge Wala Kukkad, Dum Biryani and Chur Chur Naan Platters. I loved the chur chur naan platter, the non veg one, which had keema stuffed naans, which I relished with some dal makhani. The pota kaleji shitake was a unique dish with this combination of kaleji and mushrooms and it was really nice. Moge wala kukkad aka our very own butter chicken was good too, I loved the balanced flavours, so as that neither it was too sweet nor too spicy, but just the way it should be. Another dish that I really enjoyed was the palak moti, creamy palak gravy with creamier mascarpone cheese, it was delectable.
Desserts included Gajar Halwa Kunafa and Saffron Pear Malai Chaap, and once again, the presentation bowled me over. Taste wise I enjoyed the Gajar Halwa Kunafa more, though it could have been sweeter, but it was nice.
I really look forward to another foodie experience at Masala House, and I urge you to give it a try, I am sure you won’t be disappointed.