Sunday, January 27, 2013

Taste Buds

Born as a stereotypical Keralite with a big moustache, and a craving for non vegetarian food, I often chose to dine out to escape from the mundane mess food, which always lacked the zing in it. Over the course of past three and half years, I had the opportunity to dine at some interesting places in and around IIT, Powai. However, the prospect of writing about these places and the food there never crossed my mind until recently.

Sanchar, labelled encyclopaedia, for his innate ability to speak on any topic under the sun, gave me the idea of documenting these foodie experiences in my blog. He for one is a connoisseur of arts, movies, and of course food, was sharing his experiences with tastes. It all,began with his hunt for finding Karemeen (a fresh water fish found in the backwaters) fry in Mumbai. He approached me for recommendations, and my choices were obvious; taste of Kerala or Deluxe hotel in CST. However it amazed me to know that he had done enough recon missions but to no avail. So we started sharing notes about places to eat in Mumbai, and I was amused to know how much he knew about authentic food available across Mumbai. The fact that he maintains a diary wherein he scribbles about his experiments with tastes reinstated the fact that he is a real foodie. It then dawned on me, that I could start a whole new feature in my blog talking about the relentless pursuit for delicious food.

It was during one of those conversations with Sanchar that the name ' All Stir Fry ' popped up. I had been there once with a group of my friends and I loved the concept of the restaurant, and not to mention the food. Sanchar wanted to go there, and I agreed to join him. The restaurant located in Battery street in Colaba adjacent to the Leopold Cafe, is part of the Gordon House hotel. A Chinese restaurant, it boasts of the 'Wok', a buffet with a difference. All we were given was an empty bowl, and we were directed to a counter where from we could choose from a whole array of ingredients. For non-veggies, like us, we had chicken,fish, pork, lamb, beef, fish, squid, prawns to choose from apart from the whole host of veggie stuff like, onions, paneer, mushroom, tofu, bell pepper, broccoli, spring onion, carrots, cabbage, etc etc. There was also a wide variety of noodles and rice to choose from too. All I did was fill in our bowl with the ingredient of  my choice or combination of ingredients and moved to the chef. The chef asked us for my choice of sauce from a list of sauces. I tasted a few and chose the best that suited my taste buds. On handing over the bowl, he stir fried the whole stuff in a pan with the sauce of my choice. The smoking hot stir fry was transferred into a new bowl and handed over to me. I returned to the table gobbled up the whole stuff in few minutes. A new empty bowl was handed over to me again, and I was ready to go again on my refill mission. After refilling for about three times, we both called it quits, and asked for the bill. The total cost inclusive of all taxes came to about 750 per head. The cost though on the higher side for students like us, was indeed a rewarding experience.

For all my friends in Mumbai, I would certainly recommend this place. It is certainly a place worth dining out for its unique experience, and I am most certain that you would not be disappointed at all. However, a good heavy dinner is not complete without a dessert. The hunt for the dessert in the streets of CST would be unravelled in the upcoming article. 

Welcome 2013

After all those talk about Mayan apocalypse coming to a naught, I had to gear up for an exciting year ahead. The last few months of 2012 was the most exciting and enthralling phase of my life. It threw up lot of surprises and lent a new direction to my life.  Cutting to the chase, the highlights of 2012 were
  • I converted my masters program to a dual degree MTech + Ph.D program, and could finish my first annual progress seminar. A small step towards my relentless pursuit for a doctorate.
  • I flew to US to take part in the 38th IEEE PVSC in Austin, TX. Was a memorable trip in all, met lot of people, and opened my eyes towards the global PV scenario. 
  • My niece turned one on 18th August, 2012, and the day was truly special as the entire family came together after quite a long time.
  • I could file two patents in the latter half of the year, thanks to the support from my guide. 
  • The year reinforced my faith in the almighty and his illustrious ways of testing all of us.
2012 was indeed a fruitful year in terms of career and personal life. I have nothing to crib about and thanks to divine grace, I could do pretty well. I pray to God, that 2013 brings in more happiness, and help me to bring smiles to more faces. I look forward to a bright and prosperous year ahead.