Middle Eastern melee

Jan 14, 2013, 09:08 IST | Tanveer Bookwala

Despite its well-known origins, Sufra in Bandra doesn't quite match up to expectations; it needs to clean up its act soon to score high in a neighbourhood filled with buzzing, successful eateries

Sufra means tablecloth. When we find our seat in an ultra-cramped makeshift room, we notice that the tablecloth is dirty. That should have been our first clue.

But we were stupider than that. First things first: Sufra is not equipped to deal with sit-down patrons. The waiter forgot that we were sitting there. Then, he goofed up our order. And also, didn’t bother with cleaning the remaining tables around us. There was also a bee buzzing around, causing the patrons on the other table to scamper.

The Lamb Kebab Wrap was ordinary. Pics/ Pradeep Dhivar

Sufra is a new Middle-Eastern takeaway launched by restaurateur Moshe Shek that offers shawarmas and Middle-Eastern wraps and rolls. Bandra’s Carter Road has three excellent shawarma places. And Carter Blue is arguably, one of the best shawarma places in the city, which is a stone’s throw away from Sufra, so it’s quite a challenge that Sufra embarks upon.

To begin with, the Chicken Shawarma (`133) was served rather dry, without any sauce, or garlic paste; it was extremely unappetising, overall. You might as well skip the stale fries too, that were neither crisp nor salted.

The Roast Chicken and Moujadara (`222) consists of two pieces of chicken leg in a tomato-based gravy that feels like weakened spicy sauce tossed together with a portion of something that could’ve been sold off as lentil pulao. It didn’t score high with the seasoning, and lacked flavours too.

In a desperate effort, we tried the Lamb Kebab Wrap (`160) that was filled with large parched rings of lamb and cracked wheat. One bite, and we were wishing we’d have done another round of Maroosh. It wasn’t terrible, just ordinary: bland and basic. Perhaps, a dash of hot sauce and a pickled chilly might have done the trick? The lamb was soft and tender, but that sadly, was it.

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