Mumbai Diary: Tuesday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
A dilbaro affair
This year, Meghna Gulzar stole our (and the box office's) hearts away as director of the spy-thriller, Raazi. Now she's back to tell another heartwarming story of her relationship with her father, the legendary lyricist, Gulzar — not in the form of a movie script, though.
Because He Is (HarperCollins Publishers India), her debut venture into novel-writing, was released on Monday. The book outlines her earliest memories and carries some exclusive photographs and illustrations. Fans stand to gain an intimate look into Gulzar's life.
The seven-year switch
If your news feed has been looking like a farmers' market pop-up advert, it's because locally sourced organic food is booming as a trend right now. Suddenly, veganism and hyper-local food is no longer just a checkered shirt-clad hipster's diet but also that of the nuanced food critic, a budding restaurateur or even a self-conscious average working professional.
Antonia Achache, Pierre Labial and Jeremie Sabbagh
But seven years ago, when Antonia Achache, Pierre Labial and Jeremie Sabbagh launched Suzette, a well-known French café-crêperie in Bandra, they created an impact as one of the first movers when it came to the farm-to-fork movement in the city.
The trio spread their wings to Powai and BKC. Now, the eatery has announced that it has become 100 per cent organic. "We always wanted to be an organic café but getting good quality organic produce in large quantities was a challenge seven years ago. The supply and quality of organic produce has greatly improved in the past few years, along with a growing demand. We are now able to source almost all our fruits and vegetables from organic farmers and collectives across the country," head chef and owner Achache told this diarist and left her with some serious hunger pangs, too.
Look who's behind the wheel!
Seems like the man who gave Mumbai two of its most celebrated restaurants is enjoying himself on a mad trip. Chef Kelvin Cheung appears to be having a gala time driving through Taro and Thimpu on his way to Bhutan with a friend. To know more this diarist plodded the chef-restaurateur.
"Bhutan truly is the place of Gross National Happiness. They've managed to figure out how to take care of the entire population. They are giving free healthcare and education while providing a clean zero carbon footprint place to live with zero crime and no murders in over 10 years," Cheung said.
Why Sushma's on song
Sushma Swaraj is on a three-nation tour of Central Asia at the moment and the last leg of her journey is in Uzbekistan. Now, we always knew that a country like Russia is big on Bollywood, given the number of Raj Kapoor and Mithun Chakraborty fans there.
But what we didn't know is that the magic of Hindi films hasn't escaped Uzbekistan either. We found out through a heartwarming video that the external affairs minister put up on social media. In it, an aged Uzbek woman sings two bars from Eechak Daana Beechak Daana, from the 1955 film Shree 420. We like.
A walled escape
How we travel is changing every day. Backpacking and solo travel have become so popular that they are now mainstream. Now, a leading online hospitality brand has opened up a one-of-a-kind contest where the winners get to sleep overnight at The Great Wall of China. Of course, this is making our imagination run wild, but it's also something to think of.
The paradise promised to winners
It was earlier reported by a leading US news agency that the home rental website is carrying the contest in a bid to highlight the UNESCO-listed wonder of the world and to promote sustainable tourism.
A little bit of a paradox there, if you ask us — one of the major reasons for the neglect and ruin of heritage sites in some parts of the world is tourism. So, we are not sure if commercialising history is going to help the cause, but that given the chance, we'd be up for it is not something we'll not lie about.
Not without my Bhanja
Salman Khan seems to give his nephew, Akhil, a comforting look, as his brother in law, Aayush Sharma (left), sister Arpita (second right) and brother Sohail look on at a film launch event on Monday. Pic/Sayyed Sameer Abedi
11-year-old girl gang raped by Madrasa manager and others