International Review – By Heeral Vora
Country : India
Restaurant: Ziya – Indian/fusion.
Address: Oberoi Hotel, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Road, Nariman Point, Mumbai, India
Ziya is revolution of sorts In Indian food in a city which is not too keen to experiment or rather “modernise” their staples. The restaurant menu has been conceptualised by London based Michelin star chef, Vineet Bhatia. The genius of the menu lies in the manner which traditional Indian dishes from different regions of the country have retained their essence whilst interspersing different ingredients and textures into one plate to create culinary exquisiteness.
I started with the classic street food version of sev puri (an Indian snack made from wheat flour) with pomegranate accompanied with chilled lassi and clay oven roasted broccoli with cheese and almond crust and tomato kut. For the mains i had their flaky “potli” which is a bag of chilli pickled vegetables , rajma rice and Punjabi kadhi sauce which though slightly sweet for my taste buds was complemented by the chilli. All this was accompanied by sesame saffron naan. My non vegetarian friends had spiced grilled prawns which they said were succulent and tasty.
The homemade trio of ice creams of rose petal, vanilla bean and mango fennel to refresh the palate were the “icing” on the cake for me.
The prices reflect the uniqueness of the menu and you’ll have to dig deep in your pocket for a meal and drink here. The ambience is typical of a five star hotel and in that sense unextraordinary but once you tuck into your food it hardly matters. I would recommend a table by the large windows to get the fabulous views of marine drive and the Indian Ocean. There are only three of these and in high demand so book in advance. The cocktail menu was like opening up some wizard’s bible. My Maharaja Vodkatini made from vodka, martini rosso and homemade paan (betel leaf folded around betel nut and spices) liqueur was delicious. The service was impeccable.