Simply Blue(s)... No Jazz
Good Food Guide
Believe me its tough! Its
difficult taking my place in the restaurant lily pond and
trying to tell the frogs apart from the princes. You have
to kiss many a frog before you find the prince and thats
what I end up doing, but my aim is to introduce only the princes
to you. And a good restaurant doesnt necessarily mean
an expensive one, it means one which delivers good food and
service consistently. Right? Now, though I love the small,
hole-in-the-wall, off-the-eaten-track joints, I am confining
myself to the somewhat upper-end ones for all of you business-traveller
readers. Unless of course, you feel otherwise, then please
do write to me and Ill be delighted to serve you according
to your taste. Meanwhile, heres an amazing family restaurant
that is truly raising the bar and setting international "lifestyle
dining" standards. The great thing is that it spans the
city of Mumbai and in the past 16 months has set up four branches,
the latest one opened mid-April.
Please, tick the correct answer
What is it that makes the brand new restaurant Bombay
Blue a sure winner ? Is it the high-powered people behind
it ? (Joy Kapur of the Copper Chimney group and Sanjiv Chona
of the Cream Centre group join hands with J S Gill, the owner
of the largest sporting retail chain in Asia).
- Is it the huge variety of veg
and non-veg dishes ? (Mexican, Italian, Lebanese, Indian,
starters, chaats, kiddy meals, shakes, desserts, coffees).
- Is it the value for money pricing?
(Dishes start at Rs 45 and the most expensive is Rs 175).
- Is it the brightly lit and cheery
international ambience ?
|Shots of the chic Bombay Blue outlets
Ticked "yes" for all the
answers? You are right. Said "none of the above"
then you are right too. You are right, because Bombay Blue
moves beyond all the above elements and acquires a distinct
identity of its own. An identity hard to define, because nothing
like it exists. An identity which pulses with energy and seems
to have put its finger on the zeitgeist of the citys
consumption passions. No wonder then that though the first
Bombay Blue opened at the end of 2001 in Bandra, it has been
in such demand that it has opened in Andheri, Lower Parel
and Kala Ghoda.
And I am happy to report that the
ambience, menu and standards are equally consistent and high
in each one. Except that the latest Bombay Blue (Kala Ghoda)
is not only the largest but also has plasma screens and a
big screen projector, a party room, karaoke lounge and disco.
The Plus Points
Ambience - Glass walls, gleaming
white floors of vitrex tiles, create a feeling of light and
space. There is a waiting lounge, an outdoor area and even
a bar area. The Singapore architects have imported every single
detail (including the artificial plants).
Variety - I take a slow look at the
plush, handsome spiral bound menu and my mind boggles. From
Dilli ki chaat to falafals, from Lavazza coffees to "Copper
Chimney" kababs. Kids can gorge on the kiddy menu, have
unlimited Pepsi for Rs 29, freak out on the sizzling brownie
sundae. The health conscious have not just the soups, but
also the sizzlers (paneer chilli etc).
Value - Clearly its the "value for money"
proposition that makes this recipe work. The portions are
generous and you can have a decent meal even for Rs 125.
The Minus Points
Noise - If youre looking for
a quiet rendezvous, you need to head for a non-happening place.
No prior booking - You may end up
waiting for quite a while.
The food report - What a delight
to find Copper Chimney kababs and Cream
Centre channa bhaturas here. The Italian dishes have
been made under the tutelage of the chef of Singapores
award winning restaurant Michelangelo and done
with imported pomodori pelati tomatoes and durum wheat. Rajvir
of Chandni Chowk, Delhi makes sure that the Dilli papdi chaat
is just so, while, the Israeli chef Allen Kruvi has ensured
that the falafal and hummus are redolent of Lebanon. Care
is taken to adapt each and every dish to the Indian palate
and therein lies the secret of their success.
The timing report - Open through
the day (noon to beyond midnight) makes this place a superb
option not just for meals but also snacks. But no breakfast
The kitchen report - It is spankingly
The loo report - Very clean. The
Kala Ghoda branch even has TV screens in the loo. ("We
dont want you to a miss a ball when in the loo,"
says Sanjiv Chona)
The parking report - Plenty available.
Their Blue Foods group
(Copper Chimney, Cream Centre, the trendy Noodle Bar) is primed
to take over Mumbai, before it moves into other cities. In
other words, they plan to paint the town red with their Bombay
Bombay Blue, Summer Ville, ground floor, 14th and 33rd
road, off Linking Road, Khar (W), Bandra
Open from noon to beyond midnight. No valet parking.
No table reservations, Credit cards accepted. No alcohol.
Bombay Blue (V) Shoppers Stop, Andheri (W) ||
Tel -(022) 26232222/26237000 || Home delivery. Valet
Come, be a foodie! What on earth is a foodie, you might
ask. You are one, if you are very interested in food
and feel no need to conceal your excitement about food
(it used to be called greed at one time). Foodism is
a good "ism", a religion which crosses all
boundaries, is understood in all languages and knows
no frontiers. So, come join the gang and keep in touch
with me, share with all of us, your best restaurant
experiences with complete details, so that we can all
benefit by it.
My lifeline - you! Call, fax, email, your suggestions,
recommendations, questions and youll find them
printed here. Looking for anything connected to food?
Found it? This is the place to speak up.
FOODLINE (022) 22161313
PO Box 19946, Mumbai 5