You need to celebrate the little things in life. Over the years I’ve seen that these can be the most gratifying and fulfilling celebrations. The day before I was to have my stitches removed, Nishkala from Guiltless Foodies asked me if I’d be interested in experiencing the sizzler festival at La Ruche in Bandra. I knew the Guiltless Foodies had been there some time ago and from their pictures I could see that they had one scrumptious meal. Anyway I’d be free to finally eat something other than soft food and the husband was free to go too, so a lunch date it was.
Getting to the restaurant was fairly simple but actually locating it in the building was a bit of a bother with the lack of signboards. When we stepped into La Ruche the first thing that hit us was the sheer size of the space – huge, free-flowing design and glass windows which give you a great view of the Bandra skyline. Done in dark colours with lots of wood, the restaurant was warm and comforting.
We started with some cocktails: A Fennel-tini (vodka, fennel sticks, fresh cucumber and drops of sweet & sour) for me, the husband went with a Mandarin Melo (vodka, fresh mandarin, mint sprigs, orange juice & sweet-sour mix). Both these were refreshing and had the perfect balance of flavours, as well as alcohol. Now, I should tell you that I’m terrible at finishing up a sizzler. I just cannot. And I don’t like wasting food. So we decided to skip the appetizers and head right to what we were here for.
I have a self-confessed weakness for seafood, the Massaman Pan Seared Prawns were an obvious choice therefore. The husband went in for the Sausage Tower with Mash, Gravy & Vegetables, the restaurant’s take on Bangers & Mash. The staff were thoughtful enough to caution us that our orders would take time but, we didn’t mind. It was a Saturday evening, the weekend was just beginning and there couldn’t be a better way to start than by sipping on cocktails and catching up on life, etc.
The sizzlers arrived in good time. Mine had the fiery-looking prawns, lemon rice, butter tossed veggies – broccoli, babycorn, zucchini and carrots – and a lemongrass-chilli sauce. I was pleased to see that there weren’t too many potatoes, I’m not a great fan of the vegetable. The prawns were succulent, spicy and the Thai flavours shone through.
The Sausage Tower was a complete meat-lover’s dream come true. Need your carbs? There was loads of that too. And surprisingly, it all went really well together. In any Bangers & Mash dish, the gravy is key to bringing the meat and potatoes together. The one served here was not too robust and nor was it delicate, just the right mix with a hint of smoky flavour which went very well with the meat.
After that heavy main course we knew we wanted dessert but not right then. So we decided to walk around and take a look at the restaurant. We were taken by the space, the dance floor and could easily picture it turning into a hive of activity after sunset.
The desserts – we tried two – a Baklava which had three kinds of nuts and chocolate, was a beautiful take on the original. But I’m not sure if George (of Masterchef Australia) would have approved! Dessert #2 was a Flourless Belgium Pure Chocolate Cake with Salted Caramel and Vanilla Ice Cream. This was definitely thought of by someone who is super confident of flavours, and guess what? It worked. I’ve had several chocolate and salted caramel combinations, here I must tell you that I have a huge weakness for the sweet-salty caramel, and sometimes they fail because one tends to overpower the other. It’s all about finding the balance. This one just great. We loved the dense cake and the earthy accents of the caramel, just beautiful. It was indeed the best way to end a meal like this.
We walked out of La Ruche with our tummies full and smiles on our faces. The only way to complete this experience would be a siesta, and that’s exactly what we did!
La Ruche – Bar & Grill
3rd Floor, Link Corner Mall, Junction Of 33rd & 24th Road, Linking Road, Bandra West, Mumbai 400052
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