Whether or not you’re a travel buff, call yourself a foodie, or simply love the “local experience”, you have to have to (repetition for emphasis) check out Authenticook.
Authenticook is the brainchild of Aneesh Dhairyawan, Priyanka and Ameya Deshpande. Quite simply, Authenticook allows you the opportunity to share a meal with strangers (albeit as passionate about food as you) prepared by a home chef in their home. When they mean a “local experience”, they deliver a local experience.
I first went to Sula Vineyards at Nashik in 2009. I was obviously charmed and enamoured. I have been visiting every year after that and the place has only become bigger, better and more beautiful. On a Tuesday, last week, Sula Vineyards invited me to spend the day there. My sister, Himani (whose photographs you often see on the blog) accompanied me. Also, I have deemed her the official photographeress for everything I do. 🙂 Check out her work at www.himanishah.in.
So, here’s a photo story on how we spent the day in wine and food heaven.
After a long, 4 hour journey from Mumbai to Nashik, we lunched at the Soleil by La Plage.
Fun fact: We celebrated our arrival with a Sula Brut Rosé bottle. And we learnt that what we see in the movies about popping open a bottle of bubbly is not the right way to go about it if you want to drink the wine. We actually saw a demo on how gently the cork comes off if done right.
If you’ve travelled internationally from the T2 airport at Sahar, Mumbai, you’ll relate to what I’m about to say. You’re famished before you can board your flight. You leave home an hour in advance and you’re anyway required to be at the airport at least 3 hours before your flight time. It’s roughly 4 hours, give or take from the time you leave home until you board the flight. And the only thing going on in your mind is what you want to eat.
For this reason, I was at T2 last night exploring the restaurant options and trying the specialities on the menu. Just so next time you’re at the airport, you know where to head and what to eat. If you’ve factored in time for duty free shopping, you might as well enjoy a good meal too.
For starters, we headed to the Indian Kebab & Grill restaurant. We tried a range of vegetarian starters including the Broccoli Badam Tikki and the Paneer Dum Roll. The interesting thing about the restaurant, being located at the airport is, no knives and open fires can be used. The closed mini-tandoor can serve up a paneer tikka that you can cut into with your fork. Imagine cooking without knives. That’s gotta be a real challenge.
Makai Motia Seekh
Paneer Dum Roll
Paan Assembly Counter
After we had whet our appetite with the starters, we headed to Olive Bistro for mains and desserts. Olive is popular for its pizzas and risottos. But even the burger and pasta left us asking for more. Tell me the pictures aren’t making you drool already.
Olive Bistro at T2
Olive Bistro at T2
Glass of Riesling
Olive Bistro at T2
If you thought we’d be full on the mains, you guessed right. But only for the benefit of our dear readers, we indulged in delicious desserts. You can tell they were excellent by the mere glee on our face.
We tried the blueberry cheesecake, the walnut cocoa pie and the simply beautiful caramel creme.
After consuming that much food, we were ready to catch a flight that wasn’t going anywhere. We took a walk nevertheless and stopped at Cafe Indiana where we digested our food with some cutting chai. Of course, even the chai was served with mawa cake, nankhatai and khaki biscuit.
In all fairness, we had gone all out and stretched ourselves. So, ending the dine-around experience on a sweet note was the right thing to do. The only possibility of a live paan counter is at an airport in Mumbai. The bhaiyya quickly put together two sweet paans for us and we were ready to bid goodbye to T2.
Paan Assembly Counter
If you aren’t already, do follow me on Instagram where I documented the entire experience live, with videos and mouthwatering pictures.
I love to hear from you, so let me know if you’re headed to the airport and what you’re hoping to eat before you leave the country. I’m eagerly waiting to know what you thought of the dine-around experience at T2 and if you’d like me to document more such activities. Basically, write to me. :*
Yesterday, I was invited for a preview tasting of Burger King’s menu as it gears up to open its first outlet in Mumbai at Oberoi Mall, Goregaon tomorrow. I was really excited to try the vegetarian menu and boy, did I! Unlike competitive burger brands, Burger King has an extensive vegetarian menu with 7 options. Of course, I had to try them all to tell you which one was my favourite. The interesting thing about these burgers was that each one had a different patty, concentrating on different proteins and flavours.
My favourite was the Veg Chilli Cheese Melt burger. The other thing I noticed about the burgers was the size. They were extremely filling and the whopper, especially is massive! As Burger King’s Chief Marketing Officer put it, “the brand caters to hunger fill.” Couldn’t have put it better.
Their fiery onion rings are different too. They’re not made of the usual fully formed onion rings but rather a paste that tastes even better with their sauce.
We actually started with the milkshakes and they were sweet in just the right consistency. And for us Indians, they even have a mango milkshake. 🙂 I was most fascinated with the 180 degree sundae. You can actually hold the cup upside down and it won’t melt. Add to that, I was taken back to my childhood with the Cadbury Gems flavour. Interestingly, Gems are not available crushed in the market and Burger King does that especially for the sundae. Don’t you love that?
If you haven’t figured already, I had a great time at the Burger King preview tasting. The first outlet opens in Mumbai tomorrow. Go get yourself one!
Several words come to our mind when we think of describing Uzo. Think chic, swanky, cool and the ‘it’ place to be on a Saturday night. Situated on a main road, off Worli sea face, Uzo is a new restaurant set up in place of Vinoteca by Sula.
Divided into an outdoor and an indoor arrangement, the place is well-worth a visit in this nippy season. The restaurant has a common menu for lunch and dinner which is crisp and easy to navigate through. Continue reading Restaurant Review: Uzo