Summer Garden, Powai, Mumbai
Healthy food and us (my partner in crime & I) run in opposite directions. But the dinner at Summer Garden had us believing otherwise. Ashish was our ancillary for the evening with Chef Suchint who filled out tummies with tasty healthy food. The appetizers which had us till the brim, so we skipped the main course, but there’s always room for dessert!
The handwritten menu, strings of fairy lights which illuminate the sky and candle lit lanterns lining the restaurant, days specials written on blackboard with colourful chalk, all have a “date night” feel to it. Although my date was a girl (& I don’t swing that way, #justsaying), the night was filled with our love for gossip, company and good food.
They have a “Tea Menu” of an assortment teas where you can pick the tea leaves after taking a whiff at them and then have them brewed. They are also pet friendly (yayeee!!) and even have a Doggy Menu so that your pup doesn’t eye your food!
This is what our evening comprised of –
Epic Shake (INR 315 ++): The drink was as impressive as it looked. Comprising of raw cacao and figs, this shake slid down the throat with no resistance. The figs were finely blended and the cacao was just right; but we could do with a little less of the figs because it got super sweet after a point! The bamboo straw (don’t misconceive it as a stirrer) adds to the earthy feel of this dish. A great start!
Geisha Tea: Elegant and highly refined, this tea blend of green tea and refreshing, ripe southern fruits were infused into a fragrant cup of pure delight. True to its Japanese culture, the lightly brewed beverage is an experience. You must try it to know it.
Sweet Potato Crisps (INR 180 ++): As sceptical as I am about sweet potatoes, I’ll be honest, sweet potato crisps didn’t sound like a good idea to me. However, I was pleasantly surprised. Sweet potato, thinly sliced and fried, served with Salsa, Cream Cheese and Guacamole, didn’t cause any riots in the mouth. Served in a paper boat (YAY), crispy & crunch, they make for a savoury appetizer.
Mushroom Cigars (INR 280 ++): My partner in crime enjoys mushrooms while I am allergic to them. Slow cooked mushrooms rolled into filo to give it a cigar shape is one of their signature dishes. These cigars are served with mustard sauce for that punch of tanginess. She says “don’t miss this one”, I’ll take her word on it (like I always do!).
Feta Cigars: Out of sympathy for missing one of their signature dishes, Suchint and Ashish were kind to send me Feta Cigars. Feta Cheese rolled into filo with Asian Vinegar dressing to bring out the smooth feta cheese. A delight and it was gone in less than a few minutes.
Rosti Potato (INR 290 ++): Summer Garden serves its Rosti with a lemon aioli, Baby Spinach and Orange Salsa. Potato Rosti is a Swiss version of the classic potato pancake and my favourite potato dish after French fries too. I think we lost out on the crunchiness of the Rosti coz we were trying to get a good shot of it. But it tasted good anyway. The Lemon aioli was an absolute delight to have and went effortlessly with the Rosti. I should admit, the orange salsa didn’t go down well with me, but the star of the dish shone.
For the love of potatoes, this does justice.
Flower Bed (Crumbled Feta, Cherry Tomatoes, Sweet Potato, Tapioca Puffs, Beetroot Hollandaise, Roasted Pumpkin, Cream Cheese) (INR 260 ++): This was by far the most visually appealing dish of the evening. Clicking this dish was an absolute delight and a task since it was so so dark. It looks so happy! A combination of cherry tomatoes, crumbled feta, sweet potato (in disguise), tapioca puffs, beetroot hollandaise, roasted pumpkin and cream cheese decorated with small edible flowers, this was a salad which put all your taste buds to a test. The roasted pumpkin was firm yet melted in the mouth, the cherry tomatoes did what they do best i.e. give it that tangy punch & the beetroot hollandaise was smooth. The tapioca puffs, more on the lines on the sabudana wadas we make (these were not deep fried) were super sweet and a major let down though, and without them; everything worked perfectly together in this dish.
The Indian Salad Bowl (Spiced Chickpea, Mushroom & Broccoli Tossed Red Rice, Yogurt Tamarind Jam) (INR 290 ++): When I think of salad bowl, I think of a big bowl in which everything is thrown together and “tossed” and served. Thankfully, the Indian Salad bowl was nothing of that sort. This bowl consists of spiced chickpea, mushroom and broccoli tossed red rice & yogurt tamarind jam. We were served these dish sans the mushrooms (courtesy my allergy). The spiced chickpea had a south Indian feel to it, spiced with curry leaves and coconut and could be eaten as it is. The broccoli tossed red rice was complimented by the yogurt tamarind jam which was delish!
Everything till now falls in the appetizers category. And we were full!
Sticky Toffee Pudding (INR 280 ++): There’s always place for dessert. We were informed that they do not use any added sugar to any of their desserts. (less guilt the next day!)
The Sticky Toffee Pudding had caught our eye at the start (we always jump to the dessert section first!) and was it heavenly (or so I believe)! Baked toffee pudding with sticky toffee sauce served with toasted almond ice cream. It looked like a pool of happiness and I didn’t get a bite because she didn’t share! All I heard was “hmmm…”
In her words, the toffee sauce was thick and sticky and overly sweet but when eaten with the roasted almond ice cream, it was brought down to the right level of sweetness. The pudding was soft and spongy and not sugary! All the sweetness was contributed by the toffee sauce only. Was it worth the overeating? DEFINITELY!
Our only complain is regarding the lighting. Dim lighting is romantic less lighting is bad. I would have really liked to be able to read what the menu had to offer and see my food before eating it without having to use my phone flash. This really put me off and sadly, it affected my entire dining experience.
Other than that, we had a good time.
- The author was invited to review the restaurant and has given an unbiased opinion of her dining experience.
- All pictures are subject to a copyright and may be re used only after taking the necessary permissions.