Good Eats MUMBAI

Catch-all for reports of Mumbai dining.

TRISHNA

This is the original Trishna, which gave rise to the (very different) London Trishna.

Mahesh & Trishna are 2 (now-) famous seafood places in “town” that are tourist magnets.

They started as office-goer lunch spots which transformed to after-office drinks-and-eats spots primarily frequented by everyday, office-going men. Nowadays they are more likely to be full of visitors than locals, thought they food is still good.

We had Bombil (Bombay duck) fry, King prawns lasooni (garlic) cooked in the tandoor (because the manager thought my friends would find the actual tandoori masala too spicy after their reaction to the gassi (curry) that he offered a taste of), Pomfret in Kerala curry (meen moilee), and crab butter pepper garlic. Accompaniments of rice, garlic naan, and neer dosa.

The meal was nice, but Trishna and Mahesh always leave me a bit wanting. I am especially picky about Bombay duck, which is my favorite thing to eat at these places (I could eat a plate of it for dinner and call it a day), and always falls short for me.

My friends loved the food because fresh catch seafood here prepared in any of the myriad local ways is hard not to love!

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I still remember my business trips to Mumbai 20 years ago - we’d inadvertently end up at Mahesh Lunch Home, Trishna or Gajalee for our lunches and/or dinners. They were all so good. :heart:

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Gajalee was always a family-style place, no alcohol iirc. Maybe there’s beer and more nowadays.

The other 2 were geared to the working men’s crowd in the office areas they opened in, first for lunch and then for after-work drinking.

There was a “family room” later at Mahesh iirc.

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SEA LOUNGE / Maharaja Tea

:100: for ambience, which is why one goes here. Food was and is secondary (though I remember the pastries being a lot better).

Details are here, with a pile of pictures:

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INDIAN CHINESE (Private Club)

My friends wanted to eat Indian Chinese, and my favorite version these days is at one of the clubs. Club culture is a colonial vestige. The food tends to be good to excellent as people treat it as an extension of home.

Added bonus was that the kids were in 7th heaven because they could get bacon cheeseburgers and pepperoni pizza. And fresh sugarcane juice around (at 1/10 of the price I paid in CA at the Viet grocery store a few weeks ago :woman_facepalming:t2:)

I ordered all our family favorites.
Sweet corn chicken soup
Hakka noodles
Burnt garlic fried rice
Vegetable Manchurian
Chilli Chicken
Chicken Lollipops

This might have been the meal highlight of the visit (aside from the dinner we hosted at home) — I think we could have eaten this 3 more times and they would have been very happy :joy:

I had the kids pick out a selection of pastries on the way out for dessert after dinner which was at home. Forgot to take pics — chocolate mice pie, gooey chocolate pastry, chocolate chip cake, pineapple cake, and apple pie.

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Why are pastries in India so yuck nowadays? In the 1990s, when Western style patisserie started becoming popular, you could get really nice cakes and biscuits/cookies in selected stores. Now every alley has a ‘pastry’ shop selling cheap cakes that are just bad. Even the formerly good brands seem to have exploded in franchises which are substandard.

Le Patisserie at the Taj was the first standalone pastry shop in town, and I have amazing memories of it.

The same pastries were available at any of the restaurants at the Taj, so we often ate them at Sea Lounge.

These were not those pastries.

On the more general question, western pastries are now as ubiquitous as indian sweets, so there’s going to be the same variance of great to meh.

We had a few lovely cakes over the past days, from two private bakers (with full fledged businesses but no storefront) and a club bakery. Chocolate truffle, chocolate orange, carrot cake (that was a crowd favorite at 4 different dinner parties), and the pastries I mentioned above.

There’s lots of delicious pastries here, and a lot more range than I encounter in nyc. And lots of diabetes :rofl:

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Interesting to hear about the private bakery businesses - perhaps that’s the best way to try and get high quality goods

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Linking @klyeoh’s trip reports

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chocolate MUD pie

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JIA

Jia falls under the Royal China family but the menu adds sushi to the mix.

The fish options are limited (salmon tuna, shrimp, crab, lobster) for sushi, I’ve yet to understand why the plentiful fresh local fish does not appear anywhere.

Anyway. The dim sum is excellent, just a shade below RC. The sushi is carefully made and well-flavored. There are a ton of delicious vegetarian options as well, which is great for a lot of my family and friends.

I deleted my photos after posting them to WFD, so here’s a link:

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When you say private club, does that mean if we ever find ourselves on Mumbai we won’t be able to eat there? Because I am sold.

Private = either you are a member or a guest :slight_smile:

But indian chinese is everywhere

(If you’re in Mumbai when I am, I’ll happily host you :D)

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That would be so fun.

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LA LOCA MARIA / Spanish

It’s hard to find Spanish food in Mumbai for some reason. Also Korean.

This place did a lovely job, both in service and in food. The setting was also lovely — I kept thinking the arches and columns reminded me of Cordoba, but it turns out the chef is from Toledo and that’s what he was trying to evoke with the interior.

We ate what seemed like everything on the menu, but was probably more like a quarter.

Croquetas de Jamon
Gambas Al Ajillo
Coca de Jamon
Coca Del Mar
Pinchos de Calamares
Beef Carpaccio
Grilled Octopus
Pork Belly
Lobster Paella
12-hour Pork Ribs

Plus some not terribly Spanish but crowd-pleasing menu additions:
Sea bass Ceviche
Crispy Chicken Tacos

And some fantastic desserts — if we had not stuffed our faces so much with the savories, I would have acted very much against my nature and ordered a second round of the deconstructed tiramisu.

Crema Catalana
Chocolate soufflé (pretty perfect, with a rum anglaise poured in, and then a scoop of chocolate ice cream)
Tiramisu (deconstructed — espresso soaked sponge, whipped cream, coffee meringue, and coffee bean ice cream — OOOOF!)

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GOLDEN DRAGON

I can’t remember the last time I went to the Golden Dragon, the classic Chinese restaurant at the Taj.

We started with an assortment of dim sum and other apps — lobster dumplings, har gao, chicken and spring onion potstickers, lamb jiaozi, golden fried shrimp. I wanted the crispy prawn cheung fun, but the server told us the golden fried shrimp were what went into the cheung fun, so we skipped it. We and the server both forgot we also ordered the crab claws and the chilli chicken, because they never came and they weren’t on the bill.

Mains were 5-spice pork spare ribs, chicken in oyster sauce, and jumbo crab (shelled) in garlic sauce. We and the server forgot we also wanted Sichuan fish.

Accompaniments were 3 flavor noodles and egg fried rice

Dessert was chocolate birthday cake, toffee banana fritters, date pancakes, and 2 kinds of ice cream, plus a few nightcaps.

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SEA LOUNGE again.

Some of their classic snacks and cocktails this time.

Chilli cheese toast, Sev puri, an a few rounds of very well-made drinks.

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TIBBS FRANKIE

Kolkata has kathi rolls, Mumbai has Frankies. I will take on a frankie vs kathi roll argument any day, but I will also happily eat both!

Meat or paneer or veggies that are specifically spiced and cooked, then rolled in a paratha that’s coated with egg on one side, plus minced onions, green chillies, and a final sprinkling of “Frankie masala”-- which is similar to chaat masala, but not the same.

The original Frankie is now called “Classic” and is a bit saucy. Now there are a few other types – Szechuan, Tawa, and Tikka. Proteins are cicken, mutton (goat), paneer, and veggies. It’s also possible to get just the egg paratha with spices, and that’s delicious too.

I always default to Classic, because it’s the nostalgic flavor profile I crave. Others had Tawa and Szechuan. I got a Tikka as my second roll, but wasn’t hungry enough for two tonight.

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I’d be all over that chili cheese toast, along with a few of the drinks.

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