By The Mekong, The St. Regis, Mumbai
Pan Asian cuisine is something that I have always stayed away from; the dim sums and momos and sushi and seaweed and tofu and the likes are things that I have always failed to develop a taste for, and when Sunila invited me to review By The Mekong, I obviously couldn’t say no.
From introducing me to new cuisines to making me fall in love with them she has managed to do all of that.
So here we were, mom and I, on a sunny Thursday afternoon to have a brilliant dining experience at By The Mekong.
Located on the 37th floor of the luxurious St. Regis hotel, By The Mekong offers you an unobstructed view of the racecourse and the sea which just add to the serenity and joy of the meal.
What we had:
Lemon coriander soup (INR 500++): For someone like me who hates soups and only has a manchow on and off, this one came to me as a major surprise. Totally loved it. Perfectly cooked and with a right balance of flavour, I must also mention that we could actually taste each vegetable individually as we had the soup, a true indicator of a brilliant chef. Definitely among the 2 things from my afternoon that I would love to highlight as the dishes of my meal.
Kung Po Potatoes (INR 800 ++): The authentic Chinese version of the kung pao potatoes that we eat, these, unlike the Indianised ones that we normally eat, were delicious sweet and spicy and in a gooey sauce that obviously came to me as a surprise because when I read kung po the image of spicy schezwan sauce clad fries came to my head. But then yes I was at St Regis, how could I forget.
Crystal vegetable dumpling (600 ++): Since momos and dumplings are something that I personally do not enjoy much and since maa loves them, we decided to order some. As pretty as these looked mom found the dough to be a little thick and the entire dish to be heavy and filling.
Pan Fried Vegetable Ge Tie (INR 600++): Another variant of dumplings for maa, these were pan fried and came with a delicious edible lace attached to them; and not just maa, I too ended up relishing these!
Stewed Bean Curd in “Ma Po” style (INR 1000++): I clearly remember my first tofu experience; we were in Singapore for New Years and ended up at Sabai for an 8 course set meal, and one of the courses was a tofu salad! Supremely spicy and so good that there are times when we still crave for that dish; it made me fall in love with tofu and that meal redefined Thai cuisine for me.
The stewed bean curd at The St. Regis was cooked with vegetables in a spicy chilli sauce was so good; it not only came closest to what I have had at Sabai but was also the best I have ever had in Mumbai!
Vietnamese Fried Rice wrapped in Lotus Leaf (900++): Fried Rice is something that I thoroughly relish and do eat it often! The Vietnamese Fried Rice at The St. Regis was not greasy, packed a punch of flavour and came wrapped in a Lotus Leaf! This not only added aroma to the dish, but also an extremely unique flavour that raised the dish to a new level! Definitely something that shall be remembered for ever, and also, the main highlight of my meal!
Thai Green Curry with Eggplant and Basil (INR 900++) with Steamed Jasmine Rice (INR 600++): Another dish that came exclusively for maa, was the Thai Green Curry. Amongst her favourite dishes, the Thai Green Curry is comfort food for mom and also a must have for her when she is in a Pan Asian restaurant! Her only reaction when she had this, “The Best Thai Curry That I Have Ever Eaten!” Mind you, she has eaten a lot of Thai Curries in her time, so this coming from her definitely was massive.
Our mains were also accompanied with some Stir Fried Kailan with Chilli, Garlic and Soya Sauce (INR 900++) that was sadly overshadowed by the brilliant dishes that we had on the table; but there is something I would like to say about this dish, so well cooked, you definitely do not get the very peculiar garlic flavour and also, the garlic does not leave behind a bad mouth odour, a sign of a very good chef; for it is not easy to cook garlic that way!
The Desserts followed!
Mango Sorbet (INR 500++) and Warm Chocolate Marshmallow and Almond Cake (INR 900++): This was my selection of dessert and sadly, I regretted it! The sorbet had hard chunks of ice (unlike the smooth sorbets that one is used to having), the cake was a tad bit overcooked and the vanilla ice cream that accompanied it again had chunks of ice crystals! Definitely a let-down for me and a way, I did not expect a meal so good to end with!
Chilled Mango Pudding (INR 600++), Tham Thim Krop (INR 600++) and Roasted Banana with Sago Pearls, Coconut Milk and Vanilla Bean Ice Cream (INR 500++): With maa grinning away to glory as she ate this, and also over the fact that I did not have a pleasant dessert experience, I simply could not resist having a couple of bites from maa’s platter! The Chilled Mango Pudding was the least liked portion of the platter; the Tham Thim Krop was a delightful surprise, coconut milk with water chestnut kernels and jackfruit, a combination that worked like magic; and the roasted banana with sago pearls worked an equal amount of magic on both of us! Definitely going back for them again and again and again!
A meal, so special and so happy not only covered cuisines from three countries, China, Thailand and Vietnam, but also gave us a sack load of memories to bring back with us!
A special thanks to our server, Shabbir, who not only ensured we had a brilliant dining experience, but also recommended over 90% of the dishes we had and Chef Surendra Dhami for the great food!
Note: Since we were there for a review, we requested the restaurant to give us small portions of the food.