The 2 States Festival at Jamavar, The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts, Mumbai
Over the last week, various people across the country celebrating their New Year with festivals such as Baisakhi, Poila Baisakh, Vishu, Bihu, so on and so forth, that bring families and communities together to pray for each other’s happiness and prosperity.
Food and Prayers form an integral part of these festivities and feasts are laid out in celebration.
Jamavar, at The Leela, Mumbai is currently hosting an on-going food festival; that celebrates two of the above-mentioned festivals, Baisakhi and Vishu and a feast shall be laid out (a la carte) everyday till the 30th of this month.
Abhijeet Kini, who is a very dear friend and a brilliant animator/comic artist and I were honoured to be part of the 2 States festival and relish the spread laid out by Chef Surendar Mohan, who literally has magic in his hands!
What we had:
Pineapple Rasam (INR 495++), Rasam (INR 495++), Pedha Lassi (INR 385++): The perfect beginning to a meal fir for kings, Abhijeet relished the pineapple rasam and mentioned that he had never heard of something like a pineapple rasam’s existence (P.S. Abhijeet is a South Indian) and totally loved this while I sipped on my favourite Rasam. We were also served the Pedha Lassi, on the insistence of Mr. Deepak Dube, the restaurant manager, and I have no regrets for listening to him for this was delicious!!! Those who know me well, know for a fact that I do not consume curds and lassi and buttermilk and so on and so forth; but this came as a surprise to me and I gulped down not one, but two glasses of the same.
The appetisers followed and we had a feast in the literal sense.
Chef Mohan was kind enough to give me a platter comprising of a piece of each instead of a full portion, and this is what it comprised of:
Multani Tikkey (INR 945++): Undoubtedly the best paneer tikka that I have EVER had, this wasn’t just perfectly spiced and melted in the mouth but also, you did not need any chutney on the side to help enhance the flavours!
Vazhapoo Vada (INR 945++): Our good old Dal Vada with a twist, this one also had the addition of freshly chopped vegetables to the daal mixture. The one dish, that Abhijeet said was better than what was better than the ones made at his place, and I could not agree more. Crisp and not chewy; the addition of tempered mustard seeds and freshly chopped onions lifted the humble dal vada to a new level.
Pachakari Bonda (INR 945++): Again, the traditional batata vada with a twist; this one was not your good old batata vada but loaded with finely chopped vegetables too, but that did not take the attention away from the fact that this was a really good batata vada.
Peethiwali Tikki (INR 945++): A very traditional dish that is made in most parts of the country, the peethiwali tikka is a deep fried potato cutlet that has been stuffed with crushed lentils. Usually serves with a ragda or some chole in the north, but I personally love this cutlet just the way it comes; deep fried in ghee!
Subz Mewa Seekh (INR 945++): Last and definitely the least; the one dish from my entire meal that I least liked; the cinnamon and clove spice with the vegetables were a total no-no for me.
For mains Chef served us a feast that comprised of:
Sarson Ka Saag (INR 995++): Undoubtedly the best sarson ka saag that I have had in Mumbai, this was rich, luscious and heavenly and that makki di roti with butter was added icing on the cake.
Pindi Channa (INR 995++): Channa, whose flavours take you back to the streets of Amritsar; reminding you of the wonderful experiences of the channa kulche on the streets and chants playing in the backdrop.
Aloo Vadhiyan (INR 995++): Potato koftas in a sweet and tangy tomato gravy, this was unlike anything I have ever had; the gravy was delicious and difficult to put down and the potato koftas were brilliant.
Maah Choliyan di Daal Mothi De Naal (INR 995++): Undoubtedly the highlight of the main course for me was this daal, the traditional maa ki daal that it was; I was reminded of my growing up years in Lokhandwala where our neighbours were north Indians and I grew up eating their food.
Fragrant and delicious Aloo Mutter Gobhi ka Pulao, assorted breads such as Khasta Roti, Missi Roti, Makki Ki Roti, Tandoori Roti and Naan also accompanied our main course.
After eating so much, none of us had the capacity to even contemplate having dessert and decided to give it a miss.
The 2 States festival at Jamavar is on till the 30th, every day in the evening and there is an a la carte menu for the same.
Note: The author was invited to review this meal, but her views are unbiased.