Dishoom’s culinary offering is a tribute to food from the streets
All it takes to teleport someone from anywhere in the world to the streets of Mumbai is a spiced batata vada (golden fried potato fritter) and the unsweetened pav (read: bread) that makes vada pav the comforting starch heaven it is. Pair it with a glass of piping hot cutting chai, and you can picture yourself anywhere – from Juhu Chowpatty to Andheri or even Sion — in the city that cradles Bollywood. And the new entrant on Bengaluru’s food map, Dishoom, aims to do just that – reacquaint you with what keeps Mumbai well-fuelled, and up and running. The restaurant, which replaced Tandoori Hippie in Domlur, is even done up to recreate the true vibe of Mumbai. Fun doodles on the walls include the double-decker BEST buses, the dabbawallas, and the city’s lifeline – the local trains.
The menu abounds in instant pick-me-ups, especially in the Chaar se Saat (4-7 pm) section. A fine cup of milky Irani chai comes with bun maska — pav slathered with butter — or Shrewsberry biscuits. The Chakna (snack) section offers macchi and prawn koliwada (fish and prawns dunked in spiced gram flour and then fried), bhajiyas (fritters) galore, Bombay chatpate aloo – potato in hot and sour sauce. But the star is the Chinese bhel. Crispy, tangy and spicy, Dishoom’s version of this street snack hits the nail on the head. Chef Vibhuti Bane (of Loveshack and Loft38), who’s originaly from Mumbai, says, “We’ve upped the spice levels a little to suit Bengaluru’s tastes, but have maintained the authenticity of the food. There are enough of places offering North Indian food, but no one has really explored Mumbai’s street food which is influenced by all the settlers there,” he says.
The Dawa Daru section (alcohol menu) has a smattering of good offerings. Sample these: the Juhu Chowpatty Cooler ( Bacardi razz, cranberry juice, rose syrup and 7Up), the Aam Panna Martini (cardamom and mint leaves with vodka and aam panna), and the Kokum Cosmopolitan (kokum, vodka and triple sec). Keeping in mind its location, chai and light bites are the way to go, even as the place offers complete meals. You have comfort food in the form of rajma chawal, pulavs and parathas (potato/radish), and the Malwani fish or prawn curry made with coconut and kokum, and served with steamed rice. Bane’s recommendations include chhole kulche and The Governor’s Tiffin (a flavoursome chicken keema topped with a runny egg, served with pav). For your share of veggies, dig into the Dishoom kolhapuri (greens in spicy gravy), and meat-eaters should definitely try the soul food that is dal gosht. With mutton and lentils cooked well with spices and served with naan, this one’s a good bet when the hunger pangs demand taste too.
Rs.1,200 for two. At Domlur.