EAT­ING, MUMBAI STYLE

India Today - - INSIDE - —Raul Dias

The ‘Bom­bay-style’ restau­rant is dy­ing a slow death in the city of its birth, with stal­warts like Dhobi Talao’s Bas­tani & Co. and Brabourne al­ready gone and oth­ers like Kyani and Sas­sa­nian barely limp­ing along. But else­where around the coun­try, slick faux-Bom­bay-style din­ers are boom­ing—giv­ing a new twist to Irani favourites like brun maska and keema pao, along with Mumbai street food clas­sics like dabeli and bhelpuri. Even in Lon­don and New York, joints like Dishoom, Talli Joe and Paowalla are tak­ing a bite of the ‘schmaltz-y’ pie.

Café Irani Chai, Mumbai

The first new Irani restau­rant to open in Mumbai in 50 years, this mod­est café sits along a tiny lane in Mahim. It’s a shiny, new por­tal into a moth-eaten era, with its glass coun­ter­top bear­ing egg trays and glass jars of bull’s eye pep­per­mint candy and Parle G bis­cuits. The Irani zereshk polow and mut­ton paya soup are best washed down with a Pal­lonji brand ginger or masala soda, or, bet­ter still, a pip­ing hot (chipped) mug of Bourn­vita!

Rus­tom’s, Delhi

A small­ish Parsi mom-n-pop eatery gone a wee mod. Run by for­mer food writer and bawi, Kainaz Con­trac­tor and for­mer hote­lier Rahul Dua, Rus­tom’s claims to go be­yond the ubiq­ui­tous dhansak and sal­li­boti of­fer­ings of most so-called Parsi restau­rants

An early en­trant, Soda Bot­tle Opener Wala (SBOW) has now sprung up in sev­eral In­dian cities, with the new­est be­ing read­ied, iron­i­cally, in the Irani café strong­hold of South Mumbai’s Co­laba neigh­bour­hood. A place that has an ‘Old Boys’ Club’ feel with­out be­ing stuffy. Sip a vodka-based Rus­tom nu soda and snack on the whim­si­cally named Par­sistyle Rati Aunty’s chut­ney edu­pat­tice or By­culla’s chicken Rus­sian cut­lets A real heart beats be­neath the Parsi-style ter­ra­cotta tiles here, thanks to Car­doz’s in­no­va­tive takes on the utchi dabeli bada pao sand­wich and seafood bhelpuri Here, Chef Clyde Comello takes on clas­sic favourite vada pav and trans­forms it into a de­con­structed vada pav salad, while the beer­bar sta­ple chakna be­comes chanachur garam, com­plete with mi­cro greens

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