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Food: Tuck into gunpowder-spiced idlis at this Lower Parel cafe

Trip on a circus vibe as you tuck into gunpowder-spiced idlis and delish shakes at a new carnival-themed café and bar in Lower Parel

As we stepped into Mighty Small, a new carnival-themed café and bar housed at Lower Parel's Smaaash, we received a warm welcome from a cheery dessert bar loaded with cookies, brownies and a popcorn-maker, a bar section comprising tables painted with board games and a dining area with funky carousel-inspired seating booths. The red-and-white striped walls adorned with cutouts of trapeze artistes and wide, cool blue swing seats added to the ambience. The space whose concept has been developed by Shripal Morakhia of Smaaash, in association with restaurateurs Anup Gandhi, Sahil and Nevil Timbadia, launches today.

Disco Idlis
Disco Idlis

Sing-a-sangria
The well-stocked bar offers a variety of sangrias, flavoured LIITs and even lemonades to appeal to under-age crowds. Among the sangrias, our picks were Mixed Melon (Rs 350), a breezy concoction featuring strong hints of white wine and fresh melon, and red wine-based Apple & Hazelnut (Rs 350). With the right amount of fizz and fresh fruit, both Pomegrade (Rs 75) and Seasonal Strawberry (Rs 75) lemonades complemented our meal.

Southwestern Chilli In Bread Bowl
Southwestern Chilli In Bread Bowl

The extensive eats menu (helmed by chef Tarun Shetty) includes everything from soups and appetisers to pre-plated meals and even Asian fare served in Chinese takeaway boxes. We began with Southwestern Chilli In Bread Bowl (Rs 199), a soup served a la bunny chow. With rich Tex-Mex flavours from smoked beans, queso and jalapenos, the soup made for a meal by itself.

Nutella Banana Peanut Butter and Pretzel CrazyShake. Pics/Sayed Sameer Abedi
Nutella Banana Peanut Butter and Pretzel CrazyShake. Pics/Sayed Sameer Abedi

Carnival menu
Among the appetisers, the crunchy Chili Cheese Lollipops (Rs 249), accompanied by tomato chilli jam, were a hit. Hung from a skewer in a pole-like apparatus, the Flamed Grilled Chicken (Rs 299) was high on presentation and taste, with melt-in-the-mouth meat marinated in creamy garlic sauce.

The carnival-themed interiors
The carnival-themed interiors

Like its name, Disco Idlis (Rs 199) wowed us with a burst of flavours. The spicy and sponge-soft mini idlis were tempered with finely chopped bell peppers, curry leaves, chillis, split urad dal and gunpowder, taking the dish to another level. Meanwhile, the plated meal of Appam & Southern Style Curry (Rs 279), will rank as one of the best South Indian dishes we've tucked into in a while. The light and fluffy appams came stuffed with richly spiced Chettinad style curry (you can choose other curry options like Mangalore Ghee Roast and Goan Cafreal) featuring succulent chicken.

Apple & Hazelnut and Mixed Melon sangrias
Apple & Hazelnut and Mixed Melon sangrias

Flame Grilled Chicken
Flame Grilled Chicken

The bar section at Mighty Smal
The bar section at Mighty Smal

Without an overdose of kaffir lime leaves, the Nasi Goreng Fried Rice (Rs 299), packed in a Chinese takeaway box, was generous-sized. The touch of a fried egg that covering the mince chicken flavoured rice, and accompaniments like fried onions and pickled cucumber, added to the taste.

Chili Cheese Lollipops
Chili Cheese Lollipops

Shake it up
From the desserts — offerings include sundaes, cupcakes, waffles, churros, brownies and even milkshakes called CrazyShakes — we tried Nutella Banana Peanut Butter and Pretzel (Rs 300) shake. With sweet flavours and crunchy pretzels, the thick shake was bliss in every sip. Who said you only needed clowns or jugglers to entice you into the circus wonderland?

Appam & Southern Style Curry

Seasonal Strawberry Lemonade
Seasonal Strawberry Lemonade

Nasi Goreng Fried Rice
Nasi Goreng Fried Rice

Opens: Today, 12.30 pm to 1 am (weekdays), 11 am to 1 am (weekends)
At: Smaaash, Gate 4, Kamala Mills Compound, Pandurang Budhkar Marg, Lower Parel.
Call:49143143

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