What’s better than Indian fare to gorge on during the high-spirited Ganesh Chaturthi days? This is the thought that led me to review the festive set menu at the Masala Bay, Taj Lands End. Set off by warm, golden lights under sapphire skies, the hotel makes for a spectacular seaside oasis. Masala Bay, the Indian restaurant at the hotel blends spices close to home with modern cooking techniques.
Warm silver tones and occasional flashes of color coupled with polished granite walls lend Masala Bay a contemporary feel. An interactive theatre kitchen, a separate bar area and three private dining rooms comprise of other features of the restaurant. The space makes for the perfect spot to savour traditional Indian cuisine in a modern environment. Chef Amninder Sandhu, the Executive Chef at the restaurant was awarded ‘The Best Lady Chef’ by the National Tourism Board.
The festive set menu at the Masala Bay offered the choice of one soup, two appetisers, one main, Dal Makhni and one dessert. This luncheon which was unique collaboration across the 5 Taj hotels in Mumbai was functional only during the weekdays from September 5-9 and September 12-16 to enable guests to savour an epicurean trail to celebrate the zesty days of Ganesh Chaturthi. The offer of Rs 1,500 (inclusive of taxes) for the festive lunch was valid across all the Taj properties across Mumbai.
I started with the Murgh pudine ka shorba which was mildly spiced and perfectly flavoured with mint. For starters, the Rampuri seekh kebab and Tangdi kebab were absolutely delectable but it was the Gilawti kebab that was softer than butter, tender than snow and replicated the royal magic just to perfection.
For mains, Sunday mutton curry, reminiscent of Sunday meat cooked at home won me over and so did the live cooking experience which added to the gourmet experience. The Lasooni Palak which was tempered with zesty garlic was another delight to gorge on. I believe that there are very things as soul-nourishing as digging into a delish dal. The Dal Makhni which arrived at my table was finished with churned butter and cream and it made me feel the miscellany of mouth-watering flavours as they burst in my mouth.
Who ever wants to end a hearty Indian meal without desserts? Freshly prepared and beautifully plated, tillewali kulfi and angoori rabdi were the sweet treats of the day. The ravishing kulfi was smeared with drool-worthy falooda and angoori rabdi which wasn’t too thick in texture but was just the perfect sinful indulgence you would be crushing over. A regal string of tantalizing tastes, both of them elevated me to gastronomic heaven.
A successful meal is supposed to rekindle a memory. From the perfect gastronomic experience to the impeccable hospitality, my luncheon at the Masala Bay revives many. While we might love to indulge in a Pan-Asian or Chinese fare, the festive set menu at Masala Bay reacquaints you with traditional Indian flavours and convinces you that come what may, it is food for the Indian soul.
Address: Taj Lands End
Bandstand, Bandra West, Bandra(W), Mumbai 400050
Phone: 022 6668 1234
Price: Rs 1,500 (only for the festive set menu)