Mumbai Food: New themed restaurant offers a slice of Goa in Lower Parel
AD Singh's new restaurant themed on the sunshine state hopes to recreate the susegaad experience in Lower Parel
As one of the many Mumbaikars who loves to escape to Goa for no particular reason, we find a restaurant offering "authentic Goan beach shack experience" tempting, even as it invites a certain amount of scepticism. The fact that the man behind Lady Baga is AD Singh - someone who has managed to sell the idea of a scaled-up Irani café to Mumbaikars, something the city is familiar with- reassures us, somewhat.
The location is Kamala Mills, the antithesis of the idea of susegaad (derived from the Portuguese, 'sossegado', meaning quiet). But Singh has, somehow managed to create a space of his own. A hippie van stands at the entrance and an al fresco section (the owners haven't decided if they will serve here) decked in fairy lights and verdure sets the mood. Bathed in yellow light, the interiors are an explosion of colours. Rainbow hammocks hang from the ceiling, a giant kitschy V peace sign covers a wall and saree blouses hang on another. The highlight is a video projection of the sea on a wall that we feel can be viewed better if the lighting is dimmer.
Jiri miri pork with poee
The cane chairs with chequered cushions instantly bring a smile to our face as we reminisce scouting for dry chairs not dampened by sea bathers on our trips to the shacks at Morjim. The attendants, predictably dressed in floral shirts, help us through the menu and treat us to refreshing kokum shots. The poee sandwiches, something we were looking forward to trying, sadly aren't available beyond 7 pm. We pick king fish in recheado (Rs.601), jiri miri pork (Rs.350), vegetable rissóis (Rs.200) and Santan's chicken curry (Rs.350).
King fish in recheado
The service is quick, and the king fish lands on our table first. Cooked to perfection, the meat falls off the fork; and the masala does not overpower the subtle, succulent flavours of the fish. It helps that chef Aloysius 'Aloo' Dsilva, who knows his Goan food, heads the kitchen. The rissóis is equally delectable, crispy on the outside and melted cheese in the centre; a value-for-money dish indeed. By now, we are wishing that the eatery acquires its liquor licence soon.
The pork dish has a tad too much vinegar for our liking. The crusty and soft-centred poee is the saviour and we call for an extra plate of the bread. Santan's chicken curry fares much better with its light coconut-y flavour that we wipe off with the pulao that accompanies it. For dessert, we are tempted to order gram's bread and butter pudding, but are too full and pick a serradura instead.
It's light on the palate, in spite of being loaded with cream. We wish they would make it more indulgent. Stuffed and languid, we leave the place after a few selfies with the hippy-chic van. As Billy Haley & Comets' See You Later Alligator plays in the background, we promise ourselves to see Lady Baga again when she has beer in the house.
Time : 12 pm to 1 am
At : Lady Baga, Kamala Mills, Lower Parel.
Call : 49731012
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