Saturday 18 June 2016

R Adda, Juhu, Mumbai

It is a frustrating Monday evening. Frustrating, why? It is Monday peoples! The weekend has zoomed away way too early leaving me with a pestering wobbly knee issue and I am stuck in traffic at Juhu after a tough day at work. But then I reach Ramee Guestline hotel (right opposite Novotel, not that hard to reach!) and zoom up to the beautiful R-Adda on 6th floor for meeting some vibrant food bloggers at much-awaited meet of the week and all the stress zaps away. This is where R Adda scores the most :) 

The ambiance is strong, quirky and playful. Witty Quotes gyaan on the walls to entertain and loosen us up, Cowboy-style entrance and Color Palette to give it a solid cohesive identity, some Superb Dance Numbers to get us grooving which gets crazier as the night progresses, and finally the Service that does not mix up drinks & food, it scores right off the bat for all the important things :) 

The community table at the centre is perfect for large friendly groups which is where we bloggers parked ourselves while there are comfortable couches and more for intimate conversations around. There is a smoking area just beyond the glass walls with sheesha. 

At least when I walked it, I thought it would be fun just if one drinks or has sheesha, both of which don't really appeal to me. So it was a pleasant surprise when I had the chance to taste the food and it turned out to be delicious too. The starters (named Chak-nas) make up most of the food menu but the main courses & sandwiches section are pretty solid too. Gave a look at the price section and it is very reasonable for the quality, service and location! Verrrrry reasonable! Even drinks are reasonably priced. Impressed :) 

If you love to drink, do not miss Kadak Maal and Nipple Shots. My friends loved all the drinks they had, but the Kadak Maal was unique since it came in this balti and is actually a communal drink. If you are there with a group of 5-6 friends, just get this one and you are sorted :D And when I said Nipple Shots, what did you think of? Whatever you thought of, this one would exceed your expectations :D Never before have I seen any drink presented like this one:P There was a herbal drink, mint & vodka based that was also very refreshing as vouched by a friend. As I said, value for money is the name of the game so I suggest go in a large group and try everything out. Oh, and don't miss out the huge Long Island Iced Tea they serve in a miniature London Telephone Booth :D 

For non-alcoholics like me, mocktails are also available. Lipstick which was Strawberry + Mint + Orange was a bit too ice-y and watery for me but decent enough on its own and looked beautiful. I liked Orange Basil Lime Soda a bit more,it was decently refreshing but had tooooooo much ice for my liking and also missed that kadak tanginess that one expects from a solid orange based drink. Maybe some salt/ginger or a kick of mint would make it better :) 

I think we ended up having at least 80% of the menu, we were a laaaaarge group and since the food was delicious, we let them keep it coming :) First up was Masala Onion Rings (which somehow looked like prawns :P) which was decently crunchy, followed by Onion Bhajia (perfect for monsoons,could be a bit more crunchy but thank God it was not overtly salty as at quite a few other places), Cocktail Samosas (I am not much into samosas myself but these were delicious for samosa lovers), Potato Wedges and Masala Fries all of whom were fresh and flavorful. Jalapeno Poppers were too cheesy (coming from someone who has newly gotten into dieting :P) and thus would go well with a strong drink by the side. Barbecue Paneer was soft and melt-in-mouth which is just what a Paneer Lover needs while Pav Bhaji Fondue had just the kind of authentic Bhaji we here at Mumbai love and little buttered pieces of Pav to dip into and relish with friends :) 

They have got many quirky dishes like Dhokla Skewers, Makai Jhol and Gun Powder Idli which sound tempting and give a nice twist to the usual pub menu, not to mention the humble Vada Pav making an entrance as 'Mumbai ka Don' :D We even had a make-your-own PaniPuri on a little cart,replete with puris and 4 kinds of chutneys around it, a nice experience and something you won't expect usually in a pub kind of place. Portions are good enough to make you feel not ripped off. 

Going beyond the starters, there is enough to satiate the really hungry souls. Just go for Masala Paneer Roll with softest chunks of Paneer in a mildly spicy masala mix. This is a complete meal and the taste lingers for a long time. My star dish of the evening. Another complete winner was Kurkuri Noodles Bhel which would remind you of the Chinese Bhel we have here among Mumbai Street Food staples, just less oilier, a bit on the sweetish side and perfect to go with a tangy drink. Finally, also loved the Veg Burger sliders having the crunchiest Patty with just the right amount of cheese and bits of crunchy veggies like ice lettuce. Could not stop eating them! There are dishes like Tava Pulav and Neer Dosa on the menu too so food lovers like me can rejoice, nobody is going home hungry as there is something for everyone :) 

It would be unreasonable to expect a chilled out adda place like this to have a long list of desserts. The appreciable part is that they have limited options but do it oh so well. We had a taste of all the desserts and were spoilt for choice while deciding on our favorites. Chocolate Brownie with Ice Cream was appropriately hot & cold, Baked Cheese Cake with Ginger Ice Cream is a novelty item not to be missed, Lemon Sorbet came in a bowl full of salt to keep it frozen,perfect for those who want light desserts and my favorite was Chocolate Hazelnut Fondant with Vanilla Ice Cream where dipping the spoon through the mildly hard cover to reveal the oozing liquid chocolate at the core was as beautiful to the eyes as it was rich,creamy and indulgent to the tongue! Marvellous end to a beautiful evening. This surely is a playful adda for one & all with good food, awesome drinks, great ambiance and perfect service :)

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