Address: Unit No 2, Plot No C-68, Jet Airways – Godrej BKC, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Time: 12 Noon to 1 AM
Meals for two: Rs. 1,200
Cuisines: Goan, Indian, Continental, Portuguese
Facilities: Full Bar Available, Nightlife, Serves Cocktails, Free Wifi, Valet Parking Available, Private Dining Area Available, Wifi
Go on. Begin this year on a happy high note. I wish you miracles and kick-start 2018 by reviewing the upbeat, bristling with vibrancy, bonny new arrival in BKC (Bandra Kurla Complex). And who better to review it with than the golden hearted, ever-smiling super achiever Dr Jamuna Pai, aesthetic medicine & anti-ageing specialist, international speaker, advisory board member and author. This super-gorgeous grandma, pioneer of cosmetology in her seven clinics, has been grooming beauty pageant contestants over two decades and through it all, actually finds time to cook and cooks brilliantly. Giving her vegetarian take on the food is the charmer Suchi Kalia and we begin at the bar (the restaurant is packed) and slowly move to a table.
O Pedro, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai: DECOR
How do you distill the spirit of Goa (in the midst of BKC’s steel and glass buildings), without resorting to tired, overcute cliches? O Pedro rocks seamlessly from being relaxed at lunches and brunches and buzzing at night. Vaulted ceiling,bustling bar (stocked with home brews, too) quaint flooring, foliage, lamps, curios, cane backed chairs, et al. Kudos, Ayaz Basrai!
O Pedro, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai: FOOD
I’m a dyed-in-the-drool “poee” (home-baked Goan sourdough bread) fan! To bite into the perfect poee smeared with Balchao and Chorizo butter is a “poeee-tic” dream-come-true. A Goan carnival of boisterous flavors follows. From the cured veal tongue ‘Prosciutto’, Margao Chorizo Pulao (Slab Bacon) to the velvety Fish Mousse. Smoked Pork Vindaloo, Egg Tart and Beryls Fish Curry as much a masterpiece of flavour and texture as the Poke of raw fish and mango, a brilliant interpretation of fish curry and rice. Black Pomfret Rawa fried to crisp perfection. Superb vegetarian. The Sweet Potato Peri Peri came up tops. Sublime is the only word to describe Aunty Li’s Serradura lush with condensed milk and whipped cream. Cocktails? Must try the innovative and friendly bar manager’s Vasco Sour, G&T with Blue Pea Flower.
O Pedro, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai: MINUS POINTS
Looking for traditional Goan dishes? There are a few tucked into the menu, though we could do with more of them and a better rendering, too. Aunty Braganza’s Rissois are stodgy, mushy Calamari with Prawns, overcooked Lobster Recheado, lacklustre Kishmur and the olive oil chocolate mousse fail to hit the sweet spot.
O Pedro, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai: MY POINT
Aunty Braganza, Mr Fernandes, Aunty Li, Beryl’s (the brilliant Chef Floyd Cardoz’s mother) home style recipes sparkle the extensive menu. Chef Cardoz and Hussain Shahzad steer clear of cliches and not only deliciously reinterpret and evolve Goan dishes but also showcase Portuguese-influenced Goan Catholic and Saraswat dishes. More hits than misses here. A vegetarian menu, too. And the decor (love it) complements the food, or is it the other way round? The Bombay Canteen team (Floyd Cardoz, Sameer Seth and Yash Bhanage) strikes again. Go to inhale and savour (much like Jay Z’s Empire State Of Mind) their modern take on old world Goa, the “Goan state of mind”.