Kashmir is a place that I’m longing to visit, even from my childhood. This was mostly because I always thought it was the only region with snowfall! As I grew up, I learned about their culture and food which is very unique to this region.
While I’m not able to travel right away, it fills me with joy to know that Jalsa Gold and Jalsa is hosting Jalsa-E-Wazwan to celebrate the Kashmiri cuisine. To top it off, the menu is curated by Mr. Suresh Hinduja (a noted Bengaluru Gourmand and F&B consultant), being prepared by Waza (Chef) Bashir who’s come down to Namma ooru from Kashmir, which makes this fest all the more special. Waza Bashir brings more than just the recipes to the table, to ensure the dishes taste the same as in Kashmir – the raw ingredients have been sourced locally from the valley of North.
Kashmiri cuisine is rich in flavors, aromatic and in all ways a delectable meal. While there’s a lot to choose from, one thing that always stood out for me was the “Wazwan”. Wazwan is a multi-course meal which consists of various preparations like Tabaz Maaz, Seekh Kebab, Rogan Josh, Nadru Yakhni, Gushtaba, and few more delicacies. So, this is where I set out to with my friends a few days back!
I’ve been to Jalsa Gold before and one thing that has me going back there is the royalty – might be in terms of food, ambiance or the service, everything works so perfectly together here. This time was no different, as we seated and opted for the Wazwan – Waza Bashir gave us the details about what we could expect from the fest!
We started off with Tabaz Maaz, fried lamb ribs – sometimes keeping simple is what it makes different! Next up was the Seekh Kebab, juicy and delightful as it should be. Following this came the main course which included Dhaniwal Korma (a light chicken curry) with fragrant rice, Rogan Josh with Roghani Roti, Nadru Yakhni (a lotus stem curry), Gushtaba (big meatball curry) and Seb Phirni for the dessert. According to the tradition, Gushtaba marks the end of the meal and it is never to be refused.
Just because I talked about meaty part doesn’t mean there’s no Veg Wazwan. It is just as extensive as it’s counterpart! My friends loved how the flavors were balanced throughout the meal. An experience like none-other given that there are not many restaurants which are willing to host a festival like this. Whether your last trip to Kashmir was too long ago or you can’t want to wait to visit Kashmir – you have a chance to attend Jalsa-E-Wazwan which will take you through the flavors of the Northern valley right here in Namma Bengaluru at Jalsa Gold (Kadubeesanahalli) and Jalsa (Marathahalli) between 12th to 21st Dec, 2018. Here’s your chance to feast on the divine food from the Kashmir! 🙂
“Nothing brings people together like good food” but Jalsa Gold is one step ahead by setting the ambiance right! The first Gold themed restaurant in India and happy to say it is in Namma Bengaluru! I was mesmerized just by the sight of it. Lunch like a king, feel like a king and live like a king while you’re at Jalsa gold. Glasses to Cutlery, everything is 24K Gold plated! Not to forget, even the smallest details are taken care of 🙂
Jalsa Gold is a North Indian restaurant with few continental options. A couple of days back, I was here with few of my friends for lunch and this is how it went;
As we sat down, we were welcomed with cucumber-mint & watermelon drink. Just the refreshment I was looking forward too after riding through Bengaluru’s traffic! Their buffet spread is huge and not to forget the interesting À la carte menu. I’m a light eater myself unless there’s biryani in the menu.
I haven’t been a fan of bitter gourd until I savored Karela Salad at Jalsa Gold! The preparation doesn’t even make you realize it’s made from bitter-gourd! A shout-out to Bhatti Ka Phool and Kajun Fries for making me think veg appetizers can also be interesting!
On the non-veg side, I loved Murgh Kasturi Kebab and Fish Amritsary. I happened to go for another serving for Fish Amritsary – crispy on the outside, and soft well cooked on the inside. Not to forget the Chicken Pizza, super thin crust with a layer of cheese and chicken tikka.
For the main course, I choose Butter Naan along with Railway Mutton Curry & Mangalore Fish Curry. Railway Mutton Curry is one of the best mutton preparations I’ve had in a long time. Loved everything about it!
As I said before, I have a special corner for Chicken Biryani and when they got in Biryani – there was nothing else I needed! Perfectly cooked with long grain rice, just the way I love it!
I was pretty stuffed by then, but couldn’t resist myself from having Rasgulla and Gulab Jamoon with Ice Cream. They also have continental desserts.
The service is quick and staff doesn’t rush food onto the plate like elsewhere. While there are many buffet options, I recommend you try Jalsa Gold once for a complete dining experience altogether.
Ps: Perfect place to dine with your loved ones 🙂
Cost: ₹1400 for two (without alcohol). ~ ₹2000 for two (with alcohol).
Ending 2017 on a Biryani note! It’s that time of the year to pen down our favorite Biryani places. Biryani exploration is what excites us the most – the joy of going out and discovering places is something that keeps us going. Last year we had listed 6 lesser-known joints, but this year’s list just grew bigger! To make things more interesting, we have teamed up with Pawan Krishna aka Tindipotha for the same. Here are some of our favorite Biryani picks for 2017 in Namma Bengaluru!
Old is Gold:
Shivaji Military Hotel, Banashankari
One of the iconic places which has been serving delicious biryani for decades to the people of Namma Bengaluru. The aromas from the kitchen has the power to make people wait for hours! Spicy biryani and a big list of starters are the only things that put a smile on our faces 🙂 Price for 2: ₹500 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/T69no2Q9AvF2
NV Naidu Hotel, KR Market
Spot in the heart of the Market, NV Naidu Hotel is been serving biryani since 1969! A small place located on the busiest streets of Bengaluru is no short of surprises. Biryani, Dose, and Kaal Soup is common to all tables. What better way to start your day? Available for Breakfast: Yes Price for 2: ₹600 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/iTJi4uq4aYQ2
Shivajinagar Gardi Ustad, Shivajinagar
Akhada turned into a restaurant. Shivajinagar Gardi Ustad Pehlwan Kale Bhai Biryani is probably one of the oldest places in Bengaluru, serving only lunch, a limited menu consisting of biryani rice, side dishes (chicken, mutton, and fish) all week long. On Fridays, they add Mutton Biryani which gets people standing in the queue! Price for 2: ₹400 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/b9r4MmyjmhM2
Hotel Sahana, Wilson Garden
Recently explored place, which left us all in biryani coma. Hotel Sahana is located near Wilson Garden, a hotel which serves some of the best preparations in non-veg. Keema, Chops, and Biryani were just excellent! There’s something about their sherwa which made us go for another round of biryani. Price for two: ₹300 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/BBjX896pSRN2
Halli Jonne Biryani, Jayanagar
Halli Jonne is the next place that gets super crowded easily on weekdays as well! It’s nearby Cool Joint, and anyone passing by can spot the place because of the aromas. Tasty Biryani, less on spices but had me going for a second serving! Chicken fry, on the other hand, was a hit, a better companion to biryani. Suggested for early lunch. Price for 2: ₹400 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/APuzvN2ARst
Amba Bhavani, Basavagudi
A hidden gem of South Bengaluru which has a deadly combination of kaal soup (paaya soup) with idly or dose. They also have a good batch of mutton starters & of course a unique mutton biryani (typical Bengaluru pulav). They’ve biryani for breakfast on Sundays. Available for Breakfast: Yes, on Sundays. Price for 2: ₹450 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/6yaoeacCJGT2
Papanna’s Biryani, Banaswadi
Papanna’s is one of our go-to places for biryani. We keep going back for their nati-style biryani! We’ve had two or three of the same from a local place but nothing comes closer to the one served here. And not to forget their daily changing menu for starters! Price for 2: ₹400 Location 1:https://goo.gl/maps/9TwLdZCnek32 Location 2:https://goo.gl/maps/6uGMf13C2j72
Anand Dum Biryani, Hoskote
3days a week and breakfast only – this place surely knows how to wake up people and make them drive outside the city for delicious biryani and paya soup. They start around 6-6:30 with approx of 1400servings. Sooner you reach, the better chances of getting a plate of Biryani. Available for Breakfast: Yes (Tuesday, Friday & Sunday) Price for 2: ₹500 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/a382Ve6z1eT2
Shivaji Military Hotel, Sahakaranagar
The one to look over in this place is the authentic mysuru style mutton pulav which is extremely good considering its quality and quantity. They also offer nati style chicken and mutton fry with mudde (ragi ball) and much more. Recommended visiting for a lunch. Price for 2: ₹500 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/M7FbgWbVLn72
Chandrappa Hotel, Mathikere
Known for their signature pork dishes, this probably is the best place to have nati style pork in namma Bengaluru. All the pork dishes are exclusive. Pork biryani is a must try here. Other than that they also have some 5 chicken and mutton starters and biryani. Price for 2: ₹400 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/kjGqUmLNHBG2
Sri Banashankari Donne Biryani, Banashankari
This place has a very unique and delicious donne biryani, varieties of lip-smacking chicken and mutton starters. And also do visit here on a Sunday morning and try idly & leg soup combo. Not to forget the breakfast biryani! 😋 Price for 2: ₹300 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/WXiRbCh8NiC2
Sharief Bhai, Koramangala
5 meals in last 2 weeks – This tells you how much we love the biryani here! Sharief Bhai focuses on Muslim cuisine and brings in the decade-old recipes, homemade spices and ghee to the table. They are open till 2am, so say ‘yes’ to midnight cravings 😀 Price for 2: ₹500 Location:https://goo.gl/maps/PYvocVTdMk12
PS – Do you also love biryani just like us? If yes, are you a part of Bengaluru Biryani Club? If not, where have you been? They organize meets to bring Biryani lovers together to share everything related to biryani!
Disclaimer – We are not saying they are the best, but some good places we’ve come across! Prices are subjected to change on how much you plan on eating! We aren’t affiliated with any of these restaurants. And also we’ve visited all these places on our own, many times before making this post. Our fat bellies and empty wallets are the proof of same 😛
Seafood preparation takes time, patience and a lot of effort to get each dish right. The last time I ate a heartful of seafood was during my backpack trip to Kundapura and Udupi in Feb! Ever since then, I had been craving those dishes and none of the places I tried in Bengaluru came close. That is when I realized Sea Rock was just in the backyard and I had totally missed it.
Sea Rock opened in 1985, and has been serving authentic coastal dishes ever since. The ambiance is kept to minimal. Comfortable seats, long tables with dim light. It’s spread across two floors and which includes bar space as well. So called up a few friends and got ourselves a table for Sunday brunch, turned out to be one of the best!
We all had skipped breakfast that day, so this was more like a brunch. Started off with Pomfret Tava Fry and Seer Rava Fry, the common dish at any coastal restaurant. Pomfret Tava Fry, pan-fried to perfection was a bliss to the eye and a joy to belly! Seer Rava Fry left us wondering how could anyone pull it off – crispy exterior and soft on the inside. We had zero regrets about skipping breakfast after this.
After a satisfying tava fry, we got Pomfret Masala Fry. The fish is prepared and served with a special masala. This time we asked for extra spice and that is what we got – tangy and spicy. Delicious isn’t enough to describe the taste.
We started the main course with my fav, Chicken Sukka and Neer Dosa. Also known as Kori Sukka, Chicken Sukka is a native Mangalorean dish made with ghee and loads of coconut. A bite of this and I was instantly taken back to Udupi, ended up having 4 of them!
After this, we went overboard and ordered: Kori Rotti with Mangalore Chicken Curry, Kotte Idli with Kundapura Chicken Curry and Boiled Rice with Kane Fish Curry all at once! Kori Rotti is brought in from the coastal regions. Boiled Rice and Kotte Idli are the staple food, can’t go wrong with them. The curries are what make them stand out from the rest! The spice levels are kept to moderate to balance out the flavors.
By the time we finished our meal, it was almost 4:30 PM and everyone else had left the restaurant! The management was kind enough and made sure we had a great experience. The service is extremely good. They ensure the food is served hot, so that it tastes best! The happy helpers know when to bring in food and make sure the table is not piled up.
Sea Rock stays true to its establishment and serves authentic coastal food, and what can I say, just can’t resist good food! It’s definitely worth every penny.
I have started exploring places which serve biryani, in my free time. There are a lot of hotels which serve amazing biriyanis, just that we need to find and visit them! This time, I decided to try something away from Bengaluru, a place which is easily accessible and be back before dusk.
Mysuru was the first city that popped up to my mind! Along with my two other foodie buddies, I visited two famous hotels and trust me, we had a wonderful food journey 🙂
On the quest of finding the biriyani hotel, we came across Hotel Hanumanthu (Mysuru). They have been serving Mutton/Chicken Palav (something similar to biryani) for almost 90 years now! Easy journey through train or vehicle. A little research online revealed the history and all the celebrities who had dined there. Since the journey was on foot, we planned to have Palav for breakfast or brunch.
The plan was simple – travel to Mysuru, jog till Hotel Hanumanthu, eat Palav and head back to Namma Bengaluru. Little did we know what Mysuru had planned for us! As this was a weekend food-getaway, we kept the spendings to minimum.
There are plenty of trains running between Bengaluru and Mysuru, starting from 4 am. We took the 6:30 am Hampi Express and reached Mysuru around 9:45 am. I must confess, Mysuru is a beautiful city! It has wider roads, long canopies on both sides and also less traffic compared to Bengaluru.
As we got to the main road, two of my friends started to jog while I reluctantly declined the offer and walked. Google Maps has multiple listings for Hotel Hanumanthu, so getting the right one is important. After a tiring walk and bad-listing, we arrived at Hotel Hanumanthu a little too soon for lunch, 1.5hrs to be exact. This left us sad and even hungrier, so we Googled for other hotels and found Hotel Mylari!
20mins and an Ola-auto ride later, we found ourselves at Hotel Mylari. In simple words – small entrance, 16-20 seatings, homely feel and friendly staff. Chose their speciality – Saagu Masala Dosa and were taken off at the first bite! Soft, fluffy and topped with butter made it a complete package. What’s Dose without coffee, right? So we sipped coffee, talked about things while our Palav was getting ready at Hotel Hanumanthu.
15mins Ola-auto ride and 5mins walk later, we were back at Hotel Hanumanthu. As we walked towards the hotel, the aroma increased exponentially! The staff were happy to see us back, so were we. Simple order – 2 plates of Palav, chicken kabab and chicken kurma. They served it for us, a few photos and then we sat down to the important meal of the day. We had our first bite, looked at each other in awe! Light on spices tasted way better than expected and even put some off to the so-called biryani’s at Bengaluru aside! The Sherwa was spicy and complimented Pulao.
The return was similar to the morning, a train at 2:30 pm. We spent a little time in railway station taking photos and recording videos. Did I mention that the entire railway station is covered by Google Wi-fi, so that you don’t get bored while waiting! All in all, this turned out to be way better than what we had on our minds.
Big Brewsky is one of the most happening places in Bengaluru right now. Known for its biggest micro-brewery, old-school ambiance, rooftop bar, centrally located pool, music deck and everything which left us mesmerized!
A couple of weeks ago, we attended the launch of their new menu called Big NewSky! The game plan was simple, we start the evening with a cook-off guided by Chef Saby himself, a tour to the new Big Brewsky and party hard till wee hours. As we settled down, it all changed to Chef Saby demonstrating us the new dishes while we sipped down to Karthik’s new concoctions and partied till the end.
Of all the new additions, Chef Saby was kind enough to share the secrets to Corn Spinach Shoe Rolls and Tomato Black Rice Mushroom Risotto! Corn Spinach Shoe had me going the entire evening, a crispy munch stuffed with sweet corn, spinach, garlic and spices added to the taste. Black Rice Mushroom Risotto was a level apart from most of my previous tries. The combination of arborio rice and mushroom, slowly cooked with truffle essence gave it a soft and creamy texture.
The bar has seen new additions too! My Old Pal and The Great Pretender were our favorites from the long list! Why? – My Old Pal for its espresso and caramel mixture while The Great Pretender for its tequila and color! A huge shot out to Mixologist Karthik for coming up with such amazing drinks.
The music deck is one of it’s kind! They’ve an interesting choice of genre for each day and as a tribute for Sixties music, bands perform live on Sunday’s while one can relax with their special brunch spread. Overall, the Big Brewsky has gone big and innovative with Food, Beer, Drinks and Music, which attracts the crowd of Namma bengaluru.
Few more dishes to make you drool 😀
We’d like to thank the entire team of Big Brewsky for hosting us and happy helpers who served us. We’ll definitely be back to try more of their new menu 🙂