Mumbai Food: Why Versova's new delivery-only joint is the pocket's best friend
A new eatery in the buzzing locality offers budget combos to sort your end-of-month hunger pangs
We think of our time as a student, full of hope, aspiration and newly found freedom fondly. Now that we look back on those days of being relentlessly broke we realise it's possible to find happiness in the strangest of things. We managed to find joy and pride alike in being able to afford a full meal or a discovering VFM deal. It made us feel like we had survived.
Mutton kheema combo
Today, we trot around the maximum city in finer clothes, and on good days, sipping overpriced cocktails. But that's just the story for the first 15 days of a month. The second half we survive with a little help from places like Khan Uncle, which we discovered a few Sundays ago. If we could take the term pocket-friendly literally then this delivery-only joint is the pocket's best friend, because they understand just how much change we can spare for a meal like an all-knowing bestie would.
Butter chicken combo
We order a wholesome meal that could sufficiently fill up four people and opt for their budget combo meals, all of which come with a succulent and sweet gulab jamun. First up is the butter chicken and rumali combo (R150) that comes with two rotis. The chicken has a strong onion and garlicky flavour and is reminiscent of the variety one would find in old Delhi's khau gallis. The spices help give the dish an aromatic lift while the clever use of curry leaves elevates the taste while also lending the dish slightly sweet notes. The rumali rotis are soft and go well with the gravy.
The mutton kheema combo (R150) too, comes with rumali rotis. When served on a plate, the greasy puddle of oil puts us off initially, but as we savour it with the rotis, we slowly forget the calorific memories from a few moments ago. It reminds us of a mix of the versions we've tried before in quaint Irani cafes and poky, hole-in-the-wall eateries off Mohammad Ali Road; each spoonful is spicy hot but we don't mind it on a wet Saturday afternoon.
Chicken fried rice and chicken chilly combo
The chicken biryani combo (Rs 150) comes with a serving of raita which is the right amount of everything — sweet, salty and tangy and we gladly chomp it down. The rice is a little lacklustre, in that it's missing the redolent flavours typical of a good plate of biryani, however when eaten with the chunky piece of chicken that is evidently well-marinated and soft and juicy inside. The dish seems to work.
Finally, we tuck into the chicken fried rice and chicken chilli gravy combo (R120).
Here too, the rice could have been a little more flavourful though we do appreciate the addition of egg along with chicken chunks. The chilli chicken gravy is not overtly spicy which we like, and we also enjoy the peppery after-taste of the dish. While neither the fried rice nor the chilli chicken are of the quality or taste one could find, say, perhaps at a fine-dining Asian restaurant, as a humble broke young adult trying to get by without having to survive another day on cheap quick fixes like vada pav or “anything the aunty outside office makes,” we have no complaints.
The joint also delivers till late night making it almost too perfect. To be honest, we are just happy to have had the leisure of tasting a number of dishes without the bill burning a gaping hole in our already perforated pockets. And as we said in the beginning, it's already past July 15.
Time: 11 am to 5.30 am
At: Off Yaari Road, Versova, Andheri West.
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