Hakkasan never fails to surprise us one way or another. The Bandra-based restaurant’s policy of not allowing guests to pack extra food home raised a few eyebrows when it launched two years ago as did it’s polite insistence that guests do not bring children upto a certain age to the place. Its food, though, was always great and patrons usually went home happy.
So a week ago when it announced a complete revamp of its menu, we were curious. After all, the Mumbai branch is the cousin of the two-star Michelin restaurant by the same name in London. It’s a weeknight when we land up at the exclusive restaurant and are ushered to a relatively quiet corner table. The place is already buzzing with a select few invited guests sampling the new menu before it goes public.
We order the Dragon fruit and mustard prawn salad (Rs 650) first up along with the Vegetarian steamed Dimsum basket which has lotus roll, chive and crystal dumplings (Rs 800). The dimsums are soft and go perfectly with the glass of pinot noir we have ordered. The Dragon fruit looks awesome and anything in mustard sauce (in this case the prawn) always tastes great to a Bengali.
The Hakka hand pulled noodles (Rs 595) is average as is the Three style mushroom stir fry (Rs 750). Next up is the Steamed Rawas with homemade chilli sauce (Rs 655). This is a surprise. Rawas in an authentic oriental restaurant? We are told that Hakkasan has introduced three or four Indian ingredients in the new menu since the owners figure Rawas and Indian salmon blend perfectly with most oriental meals.
The highlight of the evening, however, is the Braised pork belly with truffle sauce and mantao (Rs 1,350). It’s slightly sweet but goes well with the noodles and is deliciously soft and easy to chew.
No place left for desserts, we finish off with one more glass of the red wine before we manage to extract ourselves from the soft cushioned seats. Around Rs 5000 for a meal for two Hakkasan is never going to be in the ‘affordable’ category. But if you are feeling flush, think no more! We cannot rate the experience, as it was a preview