Aaj kya khana hai?
The million dollar question which always necessarily will have not have the sahi jawaab, but isn’t it cool to binge on some mouth-watering delicacies from two different cuisines under one single roof?
Yes, you heard me right, Mandarin and Mircchi (M&M) is here to satiate all your Indian and Asian cravings, as the tagline goes, Indian Bhi. Asian Bhi.
Let’s see who wins the tug of war, but be rest assured you have loads to try from the best of both the worlds.
M&M is located inside Ishanya Mall, Yerwada just next to their sister outlet Baraza ( Deets about the place a little later).
As we entered the dim lights, brick undertones give this place a casual yet chic look, and the Indo-Oriental elements in the form of origami decor just add to the charisma. On one side of the place, you have our Indian shine, Peacock offering warm vibes and on the other side there’s fiery dragon whose eyes are glued to its customers.
My artist folks will agree, Origami isn’t a cake walk and this art form just adds to the beauty. Addressing my former question of what’s cooking, let’s check out what this place offers to the foodie souls in Pune.
We started with Green fizz it’s full of basil leaves, black pepper, lime just an average mocktail. The team insisted we try their signature drink, Paan Banarsiwala, first thoughts after hearing the name, background music has to be ‘Khaike paan Bana raaswala khuli Jaye band akal ka tala’! If you are Bollywood buff like me you can relate to the sentiment, the mocktail version had muddled betel leaf and the right amount of gulkand which made this drink extremely refreshing!
For starters in the Mandarin Section we tried the following:
Three style mushroom dumplings
They say ‘You eat with your eyes first‘ this dish epitomizes this profound thought. The cute delicate purple looking dumplings consisted of oyster, button mushrooms and shiitake with fried garlic tasted lovely.
Three style mushroom dumplings
Fish dumplings were pretty good which went well with amazing chili garlic lemon sauce.
Prawns hargau, these shrimp dumplings are transparent and smooth. The prawn dumplings first appeared in Guangzhou outskirts near the creek bazaar Deli. This dish is said to be the one that judges the skill of a dim sum chef (Info courtesy Google) and this scored full marks with the bamboo shot and prawns filling.
Next one was unique, Carrot and Turnip cake carrot cakes are well known, but this was new it felt like nicely fried breadcrumbs with garlic sauce. Turnip is quite a popular choice in the chilly regions and the combination with carrot is definitely worth a try.
Carrot Turnip cake
M&M chicken was crispy, nice flavors of the sauces used.
Cheung fun vegetable this was similar to a spring roll only difference it wasn’t deep fried, but delicate rolls with sweetcorn and broccoli, sweetcorn tasted good with the other ingredients.
Cheung fun vegetable
Chili garlic paneer is a good dish for vegetarians, this tasted similar to paneer chilly dry with spring onions, peppers and veggies.
Chili garlic paneer
That’s all we had in the Mandarin section, read on to decode the Indian khazana.
We started with Dahi kebabs, kebabs are weakness and when it has cottage cheese, curd and Indian spices infused its LOVE! The crispy outer covering and the smooth amalgamation made this a stellar dish.
Lamb tikka was a big disappointment! it was too chewy and the team accepted to work on the preparation.
For the mains, we started with Red veg thai curry which comprised of basil, lemongrass, galangal and coconut milk. The overpowering coconut milk should have been more thick to go with the rice served.
When it comes to Veg food I am a lot like the foodies who love paneer in any form be it tikkas, rolls, gravy, parathas and even biryani! Paneer lababdar with rich tomato gravy and Indian spices is one of the best I have had till date. Indian breads compliment this one perfectly.
Asian place and noodles nai khaya toh kya khaya? Pan fried noodles were nicely done and quite a hit among fellow blogger friends.
This was followed by another showstopper or stealer I must say, Raan biryani this requires loads of efforts to achieve precision and bang on with the flavors and use of different ingredients. All the meat lovers, you shouldn’t miss this star!
After this richy rich satisfying affair, it was time to end the meal on a sweet note. We were served with the most common dessert, no guesses for this one Sizzling brownie with vanilla ice-cream. This was different yet special, as it had no frills, but hits the right spot with chocolate indulgence and soft brownie, vanilla ice-cream was the perfect cherry on this brownie.
Too much chocolate, but I am certainly not complaining as the next dessert balances with a subtle sweetness. This was Rabadi mousse with saffron sauce, I was still in the chocolate coma and it took a while to relish this one. It’s ideal for people who want to have desserts but want to keep a check on their sugar intake.
On this note we ended this happy meal, but what’s the score of the world famous tug of war? Well, there’s no apple to apple comparison as the quantity of items in both the sections varied. My picks are Dahi kebabs, Paneer Lababdar, Raan biryani, Carrot and Turnip cake, Three style mushroom dumplings. The menu is quite exhaustive and you must try out yourself to come to a fair judgment.
More about Mandarin and Mircchi- It’s the brainchild of the owner of three successful venture; The Sassy Spoon, Sassy Teaspoon and Baraza Bars & Bites. Overall this place is here to charm and teases your Indian-Asian food cravings!
*This review is completely based on my experience with no influence of any external factors.*
Contributing Writer: Anu Banerjii
Anu is a Bong by genes, Punekar by birth, Media professional by choice and Foodie by heart. Food Blogging for her is not being a critic, but it’s all about relishing the flavours to the fullest, thereby share an experience.
Follow Anu’s food journey at- www.anubanerjii.com
For drooling food pictures follow her on Instagram: anukaadda