Known to have transformed the face of Indian cuisine with their past gems, impossible is just another word in the dictionary for Jiggs & Zorawar Kalra. Dream of a dish and this father-son duo will serve it to you on a platter! And just when you think they have outdone themselves with MasalaBar – rumored to be the world’s first candle-lit bar… you have Farzi Café!
When the invite for their launch party came in, I assumed it was just a sheet of paper until I read ‘Disclaimer: This is an edible invite.’ Yes, you read that right! It was made with flattened sugar paste and could only be destroyed by eating. Now that’s next level awesome, isn’t it? I was eagerly waiting to see what set’s this apart from the other outposts under their renowned food company.
Though the Urdu meaning of Farzi means ‘fake’ – this modern day diner is anything but that. Here, it means creating an ‘illusion through food.’ After creating a buzz in Delhi & Dubai, it is all set to rock Mumbai with its extravagant cooking techniques, mind-blowing presentations and ofcourse molecular gastronomy without compromising on taste and quality. Situated at Lower Parel’s bustling Kamala Mills Compound, Farzi Café aims to provide a unique Indian bistronomie dining experience where traditional Indian flavors marry global cuisine with oodles of action and drama.
Covering an area of approximately 4400 sq. ft. and accommodating nearly 250 guests at a time, the interiors are inspired by Rajasthani jali work. It offers patrons a view of lush greenery through the day and transforms into a high-energy space with projection lighting and a dynamic ambiance in the night. Comfy couches are placed on the right side while adjustable tables are placed in the centre that can be converted to high tables, post sunset. An in-house DJ plays soft tunes during sundown and gets you into the groove as the night sets in. One can also enjoy live performances that are scheduled to take place on Friday nights, as of now.
Coming to the food & drinks, the menu (don’t miss out on the doodles) is exhaustive with a mix of molecular and regular fares that sound bizarre on the onset but are as flavourful as you can imagine them to be. Bartender Arjun Chaudhary is like a magician at work. He has the power to hypnotize you with his flawless art of making cocktails. Make sure to keep your camera ready – his skills of playing with fire and nitrogen are par excellence and Instagram worthy too. The servers are well informed about every dish on the menu and are extremely kind, helpful and friendly.
What I tried:
– Mishti-doi amuse bouche
– Mini Raj Kachori
– Chicken Changezi Quesadilla
– Tempura Fried Prawns
– Dal Chawal Arancini
– Delhi Belly Tikka
– Grainy Mustard Fish Tikka
– Tandoori Margrita Kulcha
– Khandwi Popsicle
– Spaghetti Aglio-olio e Cocco
– C.T.M Chicken Tikka Masala
– Baileys Lollypop
– Parle-G Cheesecake
– Paan Ghujiya
What impressed me:
– All the three palate cleansers were outstanding. While the mishti-doi amuse-bouche (served at the beginning of the meal) was refreshing, the khandwi popsicle (served just before the mains) topped with caramel sauce, was cooling and flavorful. Dehydrated meetha paan enclosed in a ghujiya (served at the end of the meal) made with candy floss was a delightful end to the meal
– Mini Raj Kachori topped with chutney foam and served with crispy okra salad on the side was a great reminder of childhood chaat parties. The sweet curd mixed with the tamarind and mint chutney created a riot of flavors and colors in the mouth and on the plate as I dug into it
– Made with ghee-infused Malabari Paratha and a spicy tandoori chicken filling, the Chicken Changezi Quesadilla was an innovative take on the Mexican staple
– Tempura Fried Prawns came with lemon-chilly foam and were tossed with Sriracha and an in-house mayonnaise. The foam evaporated instantly leaving behind sharp hints of the spicy sauces – very similar to the Dynamite Shrimps served at P.F.Changs (an international chain known for its mayonnaise-coated shrimps served in cocktail glasses)
– A round deep-fried ball of dal khichdi and papad crumbs, garnished with green chutney, aachar and papad, known as Dal Chawal Arancini was unique and comforting
– The Delhi Belly Tikka served in a grill with roasted russet apples hit the spot for me. Succulent pork belly marinated in anardana chutney, glazed with murabba and slow cooked for about 2-3 hours was saucy, tangy and melted in the mouth
– Tandoori Margrita Kulcha a.k.a ‘desi pizza’ was finger-licking delicious. Bite-sized kulchas served with a Bloody Mary ketchup dribbled mozzarella with every bite.
– The British import C.T.M – Chicken Tikka Masala presented in a replica of the red telephone booth seen all over London was served with Cornish cruncher naan. The subtle flavors of the cheese naan perfectly balanced the sharp flavors of the spicy chicken gravy
– Bite-sized Parle-G cheesecake made with Philadelphia cream cheese and decorated with nostalgia-inducing gems was carefully placed in home-style rabdi with flaky pistachio – perfectly sweet and touched upon all the right notes.
What didn’t impress me much:
– Grainy Mustard Fish Tikka was slightly bland and could do with a stronger flavor
– Similar to the famous Burmese Khao-suey, the Spaghetti Aglio-olio was a tad bit salty for my liking
– Served on a tree-like structure, the highly recommended chocolate and baileys-infused lollypop, though interesting, lacked a punch of baileys.
Upon being asked about his newest baby, Zorawar Kalra, Founder & Managing Director, Massive Restaurants Pvt. Ltd. said, “Farzi Café was born out of our sheer passion for Indian food. It is this faith, coupled with the demand, which has encouraged us to bring the concept to Mumbai and are confident that our guests would enjoy the freshness incorporated in the overall experience.”
Near Radio Mirchi Office,
5pm to 1am. Will soon be open for lunch as well.
*The meal was paid for by Farzi Cafe.
Also on Polka Cafe – http://www.polkacafe.com/farzi-cafe-mumbai-food-review-2790.html