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    Roll into the Asian Station  and sip on a steam engine?

    There’s a mocktail at the Asian Station called the Steam-Engine. It’s a blend of cranberry, orange and masala chai. But oddly enough, the reason we like it so much is not what goes into it, but rather what comes out. Its rightly christened name should give you a hint. Served up in a olive oil-vinegar holder re-purposed as drinking glass, you can chug-chug through one spout while dramatic wisps of smoke ascend from the other—thanks to the predictably tense marriage of dry ice and hot water.

    Unlikely cargo
    So that was our unconventional hello as we rolled into this week-old restaurant. Located at Shanthi Colony, Anna Nagar, the 105-seater space is as expansive as it menu, serving flavours from Thailand, Japan, Vietnam, Myanmar and, of course, China. “I can eat Chinese morning, noon and night. It’s what inspired this restaurant,” says foodie Rohan Ahuja who is all of 25 years old. With a family background in pharma and no hospitality experience whatsoever, this restaurant is a passion project. If you think that’s a bit extreme, chew on this: “My brother actually flew fried rice and chilli chicken from Chennai to Germany when he came to visit me once!” recalls Rahul Ahuja, who co-runs the restaurant.

    Asian kuli paniyaram?
    With substantial portions and pricing that is easy on digestion, there’s little not to like about this new restaurant on the block. We were a little disappointed that their live teppanyaki and sushi section was not open just yet, but the brothers promise it should be up and running by Wednesday. However, classics like a Burmese khao-suey and an Oriental twist
    on the traditional kuli paniyaram got us over the disappointment pretty quickly. Definitely worth a mention are the brightly coloured interiors that perk you up just as much as the generous room for parking.

    Meal for two from  Rs 1,000. Details: 30853639.

    — Sonali Shenoy

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