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Honest review of this new gluten-free menu in Mumbai

Updated on: 06 June,2024 09:53 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Devanshi Doshi |

We review the newly-launched gluten-free pav sandwiches that aim to blend healthy eating with Mumbai’s most popular street side snack

Honest review of this new gluten-free menu in Mumbai

Mushroom shammi pav. Pics/Ashish Raje; (right) Paneer cheese pav with fryums

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Honest review of this new gluten-free menu in Mumbai

Food: Flavourful 
Service: Prompt
Cost: Overpriced 
Verdict: 1/4

In a society where mindful eating is a constant talking point, and where individuals are always in pursuit of how to incorporate small dietary changes in their daily life, a new gluten-free menu by Pack-a-Pav caught our eye. The Bandra West-based eatery that was established in 2014 with the aim to support local pav-themed snacking options, serves a range of vada pav-style fusion sandwiches. We ordered two of their gluten-free pav sandwiches to our newsroom in Bandra East.

The order was delivered within 30 minutes. The restaurant had added a few complementary packets of fryums. While we were glad that the food arrived in microwave-safe reheat-able containers, these boxes are not environment-friendly, and squash the plump pav-sandwiches inside. As a result, the filling in the paneer cheese pav (Rs 280 for two) was smothered across the pav, and fell by the side as we attempted to hold it all together for the first bite.

The patty was a hearty combination of cheese, paneer, and sauces. It was sandwiched in between generously lathered red garlic paste and hung curd basil dip. The pavs, which were the gluten-free part of the snack, were soft, despite the restrictive packaging. We couldn’t taste any difference from the locally available pav.

The pav sandwiches arrived in compact containersThe pav sandwiches arrived in compact containers

Next, we tried their bestseller mushroom shammi pav (Rs 280 for two). This one used the same sauces and hence tasted similar to paneer cheese pav. The catch was in their filling, which pleased the hardcore non-vegetarian on the team because it had a similar texture as a chicken kebab. Taste wise, it passed the test; thankfully, there was no masala and salt overkill that sometimes happens with ambitious twists. Although these pav sandwiches are priced on the higher side, they are a perfect on-the-go, and now, healthier option of this popular street snack.

Later, when we chatted with founder Rohan Mangalorkar about this addition, he revealed that the gluten-free option was already a hit among the health-conscious groups of Bandra. “Sara Tendulkar [daughter of Sachin Tendulkar] used to be a regular client. But she, like many, shifted to a gluten-free diet. I had never thought of introducing gluten-free pavs, because our vision is to support the local pav-wallas. However, with a growing demand, we decided to cater to this group. I reached out to one of the vendors who has been selling pavs to us since we started shop. They are local bakers who are not acquainted with such terms, so we helped break it down for him. He was keen to try something new,” Mangalorkar revealed. The gluten-free pavs are available with all the options in their menu.

Time 10 am to 4 am 
At Pack-a-Pav, Pali Hill, Bandra West. 
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Pizza in pav

Pizza in pav
This eatery is best known for its fusion vada pavs. Our favourite is the Indi-Italia vada pav that tastes like pizza. It consists of a vada topped with veggies, liquid cheese and an overload of spicy sauces.
At Jugaadi Adda, VP Road, Girgaon; also at Lower Parel. 
Log on to @jugaadiadda
Cost Rs 75

Masaledar tadka

Masaledar tadka
Masala pavs at this eatery are served with piping-hot, cheese burst vadas.
At Navdurga Vada Pav, Mahavir Nagar, Kandivali West.
Call 9321510485 

Wafer fun
Indulge in the crispy wafer, paneer vada pav. It is toasted and garnished with cheese.
At Ahar, Kings Circle, Matunga East.
Call 9987131333
Call Rs 30

Chicken chomp
A mom and son duo are going viral for their affordable and scrumptious chicken vada pav in Chembur.
At Maharashtrian Katta, Subhash Nagar, Chembur.
Call 98698 16541
Cost Rs 29

Pics courtesyInstagramPics courtesy/Instagram

Bite-size delights
These mini vada pavs are served with some help from toothpicks to hold together these little flavour bombs.
At Status Hotel, Nariman Point.
Call 40318700
Cost Rs 285 (10 pieces)

Maharashtrian twist

Maharashtrian twist
The popular street food here is served with lip-smacking besan chutney and spicy thecha.
At Gajanan Vada Pav, Naupada Thane West; also at Parel and Thane East.
Call 25407867
Cost Rs 18 onwards

Maharashtrian twist

Noodles’ surprise
Find a surprise inside this vada; it is filled with masala Maggi.
At Laxmans Om Vada Pav, Garodia Nagar, Ghatkopar East. 
Call 9892602572
Cost Rs 40

4/4 Exceptional, 3/4 Excellent, 2/4 very Good, 1/4 Good, 0/4 Average. Pack-a-Pav didn’t know it was us. The Guide reviews anonymously and pays for meals

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