Address: Beside Sambhaji Park, JM Road, Pune, Maharashtra, India
Time: 11:30 AM to 3:30 PM, 7 PM to 11 PM
Meals for two: Rs. 500
Facilities: Home Delivery, Vegetarian Only, No Alcohol Available, Wallet Accepted, Serves Jain Food, Free Wifi
Sapna’s Thali, on Deccan Road, a popular option for Gujarati thalis in the 70s is back in action after a hiatus of almost two decades.
Sapna’s Thali, JM Road, Pune: DECOR
Besides Sambhaji Park, there’s a huge signage indicating the restaurant’s spot. A few steps off the main road, the corner restaurant is bright. Steel thaals with bowls are already placed on the tables, and simply decorated spic-and-span doesn’t take away your focus from anything else but the food served here.
Sapna’s Thali, JM Road, Pune: FOOD
We landed here expecting a thaal bursting with Gujarati specialties. Our massive plate did have some, but the thali majorly comprised of generic but well-made dishes mostly from the northern parts of the country. There are three options to choose from – the unlimited Gold thali, or the limited Bronze and Silver. The former one is a good bet if you want a taste of all the specialties of the day.
The servers spring to action as soon as you’re seated. You’re started off with chutneys (green and tamarind), pickle, a fresh summer salad with sprouts and beets, and farsaan. We were served a plate of samosa chat that was bursting with flavors, a delightful mirchi wada stuffed with spiced potato mash, and a rather dry khaman dhokla. The roasted papad could also do with some more roasting. Next up are the subzis and daals. Of the vegetables, the Jaipuri Bhindi wasn’t the expected okra dish which is coated with flour and fried till crisp. What you get here is bhindi glazing in a tart yogurt gravy. Really good to mop up with the ghee-laden soft fulkas or the crisp Palak Poori. Some other hits included Dum Aloo Baingan and the slightly sweet Gujarati Dal and Kadhi. While none of the other dishes on the plate-a spicer Baingan Bharta, Aloo Gobi, Dal Makhani–disappointed, they weren’t something to write home about either.
Then there was the tomato sheera. Bursting with ghee, the naturally red-colored semolina-based sweet dish, though a bit unusual, was delicious. There’s also a decent aamras and a safe yet comforting fruit custard on offer. If you want to steer away from Indian desserts, they also serve ice cream.
Sapna’s Thali, JM Road, Pune: PLUS AND MINUS
A decent option in the area to take your family for fail-safe, almost home-style, vegetarian meal.