New Irani cafe opens at Bandra-Kurla Complex
With its chaotic vibe and quirky décor, SodaBottleOpenerWala transports you into the authentic world of Irani cafes, albeit with contemporary avatars of Parsi must-eats like Eggs Kejriwal and Berry Pulao
Having been privy to the buzz around AD Singh’s SodaBottleOpenerWala, we stepped into the BKC outpost, the first in Mumbai and fifth in India, with plenty of expectations. An ode to the fast-fading legacy of the city’s much-loved Irani café, this all-day restaurant and bar opens to patrons from Saturday. Chaotic and quirky, the 60-seater space displayed oodles of old-world charm. The brand’s peppy number, Do The Dhansak! slipped us into the mood.
The Kolmi Fry made for a crunchy starter. Pic/Tushar Satam
Besides the usual Irani suspects like Dhansak and Patra Ni Machi, the menu, helmed by chef Darius Madon, also includes Mumbai-themed varieties such as the Bhendi Bazaar Seekh Parathas.
The interiors of SodaBottleOpenerWala
What we liked
From the iconic B Merwan’s name plate painted on a wall to a slate of Bawa Resolutions of 2015 (Sample this: ‘I will have a second child even if I have to sleep with my wife’), checkered tablecloths and wooden chairs, a retro switchboard, old photographs of Parsi families and a vibrantly lit-up jukebox, the design elements (by interior designer Sabina Singh) made for a perfect Parsi-home ambiance. A toy train that ran through the restaurant on a circular track just below the ceiling was fascinating.
Of the food that we sampled, our picks were Kolmi Fry (Rs 395), Eggs Kejriwal (Rs 195) and Vengna Nu Patio (Rs 265). Wrapped in thinly sliced onion rings, the batter-fried prawns comprising Kolmi Fry were crispy and the highlight of our meal. Meanwhile, the sponge-soft pao accompanying Vengna Nu Patio — diced eggplant in tangy onion-tomato gravy — took the dish to another level. Parsiana (Rs 325) made from crushed plums and orange with Old Monk was perfect.
What we didn’t like
While the rice was cooked well, the Mutton Berry Pulao (Rs 495), had chewy mutton pieces, insufficient berries and was dry. The portion sizes were unimpressive, considering its pricing. However, for its retro chic vibe, a variety of food options and an expansive bar, this soda bottle is worth a pop.
From: September 26 onwards, 12 noon to 1 am
At: Ground Floor, The Capital Building, Bandra Kurla Complex, Bandra (E).
This was a preview and hence, not anonymous