Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Dine @ Escape, Express Avenue, Royapettah

20:54:00

Looks like my blog had become a Pondicherry food guide after my visit there. Stepping back to the hometown, this is about my venture into dining at the DINE  in Express Avenue, after doing a couple of hours of window shopping.


Food:
It was just me and my mum, and my mum wanted to try the soup of the day. The soup of the day was Sweet Corn Chicken Soup which we had as 1 by 2 portion which was quite decent. Good quantity of morsels of chicken in clear soup. For the main course I had chosen the combo which comprised of Chicken Fried Rice, Dragon Chicken and a glass of Coke, while my mom had the Roast Chicken Lasagne.





The fried rice and chicken were quite good and punched much higher than my expectations. Decent quantity and delicious. The Chicken Lasagne was exquisite. If one is looking for a very tasty lasagne in a place which has a very good ambiance without blowing a big hole in the pocket, look no further. Lasagne was loaded with chicken pieces and the sauce was creamy. Craving for a lasagne look no further. Even my mom was quite impressed with the lasagne.

Ambiance:
Quite contemporary and you do get the feeling of dinning in a fine dine restaurant.

Service:
This was simply superb. Only one man manning the restaurant. But the way he conducted himself really sets the standards. Helping my mom to get seated first then, poring the water 1st to my mom and in so many other ways he impressed me. Something which you only see 5star restaurants and also in some other fine dine standalone restaurants. Totally impressed.

Price:
This meal for two cost us Rs 770/- No service charge was present so we decided to tip him.

Food - 8/10
Ambiance - 8/10
Service - 9/10
Price - 8/10

Disclaimer : I paid for the meal.

PS: Photos clicked using Samsung A5 and not my DSLR.

Dine is located inside the Movie Theater Escape at Express Avenue, Royapettah.

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Hotel Kamatchi, Villianur Main Road, Pondicherry

11:36:00


After heavy rounds of binging on some spectacular continental food in Pondicherry, we decided to head the South Indian route before heading back home. We were done roaming by 12pm and were not hungry at all. So we decided to pick a take-away from Hotel Kamatchi and head back to Chennai and dine at the comfort of our home. Hence the pictures in photobox and white crockery.


Food:

Our take away order was simple. We picked a Chicken Biryani, Mutton Biryani, Prawn Kamatchi and finally Kaadai Roast.



Chicken and Mutton Biryani differed in colour and taste significantly. Mutton felt a bit richer and was more brown in colour, while the chicken yellowish in colour and slightly low on spice. Prawn Kamatchi and Kaadai roast were the best accompaniments for the biryani. Both very spicy and tasty. Inspite of the biryani being tasty, I would not rate them high on the scale. They were more like the biryani which we get here at Anjaapar or Ponnuswamy. The same goes for prawns and the kaadai.

Ambiance:
NA

Service:
NA

Price:
This take-away cost us Rs 600/-

Food - 7/10
Price - 7/10

Disclaimer : I paid for the meal.

Hotel Kamatchi is located on Villianur Main Road in Pondicherry. They do have multiple locations across Pondicherry.

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.

Monday, 25 May 2015

Cafe Xtasi, Mission Street, Pondicherry

09:27:00

After a sensational chocolaty affair, Mom and I took a short stroll on the Gorbert Avenue to digest all the food which we had gobbled. Next we headed straight to Cafe Xtaci. We were contemplating between Tantos and Cafe Xtaci and finally settled on Cafe Xtaci as I was not in the mood to drive to a far off location.


Food:
We walked into the cafe and it was packed on a monday night. We were lucky that a small group just left and we were seated immediately. The Cafe Xtaci is known for their Pizza, so we wasted no time. I picked the Chicken Xtaci Pizza - a medium portion. I was even thinking of picking the large then, changed my mind. Luckily I did not chose the large pizza. When I saw one which was served to a group at the next table I was shocked. It was huge. It was the size of the lids which is used to cover a Biryani theksha.


Anyway, the medium sized portion which we had, could be chowed down by 3 people with ease. The pizza was loaded with Chicken Ham, Salami, Feta, Garlic, Olives and loaded to the brim with Mozzarella and some other veggies. Verdict - Yummm!!!! Loved the pizza. Portion was definitely a little too much for the two of us. To push it down into our bellies we had Lemon Soda which did help.

Ambiance:
It looks a lot like your Milkyway ice cream parlour. But the food definitely punches above its weight.

Service:
There was just one guy manning the tables and damn he did a fine job at it.

Price:
This meal comprising of the pizza and lime soda cost us Rs 900/- Worth every buck.

Food - 8/10
Ambiance - 5/10
Service - 8/10
Price - 8/10

Disclaimer : I paid for the meal

Cafe Xtaci is located on Mission Street, Pondicherry

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Cafe Ole & Zuka, Mission Street, Pondicherry

15:05:00

After a spectacular meal at Le Dupleix we headed back for a short nap. After which we headed to Cafe Ole and Zuka. Both are located next doors to each other. While Cafe Ole is a proper cafe which serves coffee and shakes Zuka is a standalone Desserts / Chocolates / Divine treats store. This post is a compilation of two visits here.




Food:
The visit to Cafe Ole was for a small snack which comprised of Iced Lemon Tea and Sautéed Chicken Mexican Pepperitos. This visit happened all because of my mom who wanted to know what a Pepperito was. Fresh ingredients, refreshing taste and a neat tart I would say. They were more like a single mouth bites for me. Whereas  the Ice Lemon Tea, was like how one would expect it to be. Just right!



Moving to Zuka, the items we had, were as follows - Hot Chocolate Drink, Molten Lava Cake, 64% Dark Chocolate Shake, Mud Pie and finally a Lemon Tart. I know thats a big load of sweet treats to consume. Hot Chocolate was like a pure chocolate which has been melted and made into a solid drink. Best hot chocolate ever.


I am a sucker for dark chocolate and this 64% Dark Chocolate shake was just what the doctor had ordered for. Perfect blend of dark chocolate with milk with whipped cream. Creamy and very very tasty.


Lemon Tart, had a nice base which was soft and biscuity while the lemon filling had little too much lemon ting to it. The Mud Pie was all because of my mom, as she was curious as how it would taste. The rich chocolate with slightly thick crust was perfect. By the time we could bite into the Molten Lava Cake we were on a Chocolate overload. No matter, we bit through the Lava Cake. Perfect chocolaty end to an amazingly chocolaty evening.

Zuka is a must visit for people who visit Pondicherry!!

Ambiance:
Both Zuka and Cafe Ole have very similar interiors which resemble your Barrista Cafe. Zukas ceiling is lined with Chocolate Butterfly which looks great and just shows how serious they are into the art of chocolate making.

Service:
Quick & Efficient

Price:
This meal which comprises of both Zuka and Cafe Ole cost us Rs 1000/-.

Food - 8/10
Ambiance - 7/10
Service - 8/10
Price - 8/10

Disclaimer : I paid for the meal

Cafe Ole & Zuka is located in Mission Street, Pondicherry

If you like what you are reading, Please share it with others.

*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Le Dupleix, Caserne Street, Pondicherry

09:43:00

Pondy has been on my list as a food destination for a while now. Been there a couple of times in the last few years. But never had the opportunity to explore it. So took this opportunity with the new found freedom after exams, to conduct a Foodpedition! (Food Expedition) with a good companion-my Mom! First stop on the list was Le Dupleix.


Food:
Mom and I have almost similar tastes in food. Thanks to that it gives me great versatility in ordering food. We had a quick glance at the menu and we chose to have the Chefs special Seafood Platter for starter and since Mango is the flavour of the season we decided to try the Cajun Spiced Chicken with Mango Puree and served on a bed of Mashed Potatoes.


Before our delicious starter could arrive, we were served with Focaccia with Olive oil and Salt in the color pink. The Focaccia was a bit hard and it gave a good workout to our muscles of mastication. Inspite of the hard nature, we chowed it down as we were really hungry and the taste was quite nice if only it were a little soft.


After a little while came in our Chefs Special Seafood Platter. They had informed us that they were out of Calamari, and asked if we wanted it to be replaced with Fish or Prawns. We chose to have the prawns. Firstly the platter consisted of Grilled Lobster, Prawns and Fish minus the Calamari and also Bruschetta. Positives first, the Grilled Lobster Prawns and the Fish were just divine. A dash of the garlic sauce made it spectacular. The negative it again comes down to the bread which was really really hard.


Chowing down the starters we served our main course which was just spectacular to look at. Amazing plating work. Cajun was mildly infused into the chicken. The king of the dish was the mango puree and the way it complimented the chicken was just fantastic. The mashed potatoes were nice, but I did find them a little clumpy.


Finally we had a Tiramisu to finish off the meal. The ladyfingers were just fantastic, great infusion in them and the mascarpone was just WoW!

All in all I, loved the entire meal despite the minor hiccups.

Ambiance:
The outdoor ambiance looked fantastic, but we chose to dine indoors as it was a bit sultry. Indoor is nice mix of contemporary with elegant Indian wood work. Big marks for this mix

Service:
They were attentive. But they did inform us before hand that they would a little longer than regular restaurants to serve. As all the time goes into wiping us a mind blowing meal.

Price:
This meal for two cost Rs 1800/-

Food - 8/10
Ambiance - 8.5/10
Service - 8/10
Price - 7.5/10

Disclaimer : I paid for the meal.

Le Dupleix is located Caserne Street in Pondicherry.

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.


Friday, 22 May 2015

Manhattan Fish Market, R.K. Salai

08:53:00

An International food chain starting its operations in Chennai first, before looking at other metros means a lot. Chennaites can now proudly announce that we were the first to get the Manhattan Fish Market. There was a lot glamour surrounding the launch of this restaurant. They had promos on Facebook, up and running at least over a year ago which created enough buzz. Looks like social media is the way forward. If you create enough buzz before the launch of the operations it would translate it into sale.



Food:
I was invited over, along with a bunch of fellow bloggers. We were given a short round of refreshments in the form of an Iced Lemon Tea. Shortly after which we were given a brief menu tour on the various preparations methods. We let the restaurant decide our menu for the night and waited to be amazed.







Fried Country Mushrooms were the first to be served along with Garlic Herb Mussels. Fried Country Mushrooms were delicious. Imagine KFC popcorn but only veg here, with mushrooms. This was the first time I was having Mussels. It was more of a like or dislike kind. Chewy and soft, Few of em were great but one was distinctly not to my liking.  It had inky taste. I am not able come to a conclusion if I had enjoyed it or not. But the taste profile of the Garlic sauce was fantastic.


In between gorging on the starters we were served with the Cream of Mushroom Soup. Yes we chose to have a veg soup. Surprising Yes! Between all the Seafood we were to binge on, a veg soup was a welcome change. It had a thick creamy consistency, which was to my liking.


Zuff! the starters were done and we moved to the main course. I am a sucker for good fish and chips. My 2nd brother introduced these delicious babies to me when we were on tour in Maldives. Manhattan Fish and Chips thats what it is called here. Please do not skip this. This dish was just phenomenal. The crispy batter fried fish with the garlic herb sauce make this dish simply irresistible.


Moving along we had the Veggie Oilo - Spaghetti with sautéed mushroom and diced capsicum without even a drop of onions or garlic was a refreshing change.




Next up were the platters. We were served with Grilled Flaming Lobster Platter and the Manhattan Star Platter. My pick here will be the Grilled Flaming Lobster Platter. It had all the items I love. Flamed Lobster check, Batter fried Calamari and Fish check, French Fires check and finally the garlic herb mussels. Lobster was the item of this platter. Simply exquisite. Best lobster I have had in a long time.

 I did like the Manhattan Star Platter as well because of the spectacular Flaming Prawns. Did binge on some Grilled Calamari and some Fried Oysters. My first for both. Calamari more because of the preparation while the Oysters a definite first time. Oysters too had the same feel and taste of Mussels. I am unable to pass a verdict on the same.





In between all the eating we had some Citrus Mint drinks which was awesome. Finishing off our meal we chose our desserts. We picked on Sweet Alabama Shake and Oreo Kaboom Shake and for the sweet tooth we picked Tuscan Tiramisu and Manhattan Mud Pie. Shakes were so blah! too liquidy. Tiramisu was decent, while the Mud Pie was fantastic. 

The food was more of mixed feel for me. I came to know that their seafood catches are usually 3 days old which could be one of the reason for the mixed feel. Apart from seafood they do have a few dishes with Chicken and veggies as well.

Ambiance:
The restaurant is put up in two floors. Ground floor is good for small set while the next is best for big groups. The decor takes centre stage. Each room is equipped with a tele and apple tv. This should keep the little ones occupied while older people enjoy the seafood meal.

Price:
A decent meal for two comprising of starter, drinks, mains and desserts should cost realistically at around Rs 2000/-.

Disclaimer : Invited review.

Manhattan Fish Market is located on R.K. Salai bang opposite to Marvel Cards.

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*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

World Food Festival @The Kitchen, Raintree, Anna Salai

09:23:00

Ever wanted to go around the world on a food journey and taste the delicacies of each country? Now you can do that at the comfort of an Air-conditioned restaurant. No running around for a visa! No blowing a big hole in the pocket. Just walk into The Kitchen at Raintree, Anna Salai for treats from around the world.





Food:
The best selection of dishes from around the world are placed here as live counters all around the buffet.




It starts off with the Chaat items from the Indian food bowl:Dahi Poori, Papadi Chaat and Bhel Poori and if you walk along, one is treated with Momos both veg and non-veg along with sticky rice from the Chinese food bowl. Further down you have Dosai and the Pesarettu from South India. As you move along you are greeted with a Big Shawarama from Arabia. Trot down further, you are greeted with Sliders and Sandwiches and finally the quintessential Pasta, Risotto and Burrito from Italian and Mexican  cuisine.






Apart from the loads of food from around the world, there is the regular buffet. Buffet spread is extensive. Full marks for the salad counter. Which is the best I have had in a long time. Salad lovers paradise. Main course had dishes which would please everyone Chicken, Mutton, Fish, Beef and Prawns all yummy!









Binging on hell load of food, I was stuffed. But desserts! I just had to have em. Dessert spread was extensive with 4 choices of ice cream and selection of Tiramisu, Chocolate Fudge, Mango Gateaux, Keer, Blueberry Compote and also a selection of assorted fruits all fabulous in their own right.




Ambiance:
The kitchen which is the 24hrs cafe for the hotel is simple and elegant.

Price:
The buffet is priced at Rs1400 for lunch and 1600 for dinner.

The world food festival is on up to the 23rd of May at The Kitchen, Anna Salai. A small gastronomic trip around the world for people who wish to devour different cuisine.

Disclaimer : Invited Review

If you like what you are reading, Please share it with others.

*A review about a place holds good only for 6 months as there can be a change in quality and quantity of the food, the service and the staff, due to reasons best known only to them. So kindly consider these factors while visiting the places.