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Villager’s Delight Monday, 13 April, 2009

Posted by ~uh~™ in F&B ( Dawa-Daru).
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Review of the restaurant: Cascade ( The Village Avenue)

Background
It’s located in a village called Thakur in Kandivali (East), Western Suburbs of Mumbai. It’s a small village with about few lakh people around with a dozen towers (tower=building above15 stories). The nearest township is Lokhandwala. A tractor factory owned by Mahindras separate the village and the township.

It’s a subset of a bigger affair called “Village Avenue” located aside the WE highway between Kandivali & Borivali with large banquet halls for marriage parties. I have always seen it dusty & crowded with vehicles.

The restaurant gratify mostly to the local villagers and the populace of Lokhandwala Township.

The location
It’s located at first floor of Thakur Mall. The same building houses the singular cinema hall for the villagers, a furniture shop and a gym (for obese villagers who frequent Cascade).

Cascade is among the popular places compared to other fine dining restaurants nearby, like Urban Tadka. As the name suggest, it’s not very suitable for villagers, like me. Moreover we need to drive to Urban Tadka and cross the highway and pay more for the food and Daru. We villagers prefer to walk down to our fine dining restaurants, on a Saturday evening, after watching a Hindi cinema.

The Food
Menu cards are fat. Below the name of each dish/ drink a brief & somewhat idiot proof description of the ingredients and sauce is given . The right hand side of the menu is not scary.  Cascade serves worldwide cuisine, as  world is a global village. Cascade has a Bar sum smoking counterpart under the same roof called Bermuda Lounge.

I have tried North Indian, Chinese, Italian and Continental. It also has Mexican, Thai and some fusion foods. Fusion foods remind me of Cosmo Village, Bangalore ( village is part of my life), where reading the menu card takes 80% of time. For local villagers it’s real wide range. The bar menu includes all the popular drinks (including OM) and most of the popular mocktails & cocktails. I have tried\ &, found Long Island Iced tea, Monday Blues, 3 Wise Men, Tom Collins, Manhattan are good for villagers. Hic! My wife likes a mocktail of orange juice, named Tequila sunset (!). But I doubt, if they really add Vermouth/ Grenadine/ Benedictine to the mixer.  Sommelier to help you with your wine? Even if some villager is successful in pronouncing the Wine’s name, the waiter can’t. Why to take risk?

The food is greatly delicious, and presentable. They still have a separate salad bar, does not interest me really. It’s all about cucumber, tomatoes, olives and stale looking green leaves. I don’t eat salad. Is money plant also a salad? And I don’t like my shredded chicken to be hidden under loads of tomatoes and lettuce. I like it tandoori or kabab-ed.

There’s a wide variety of food, so it’s better zero down on a cuisine. Tandoori starters like Kabab-e-Bannu & Bharwant Tawa Machhi are good. The later is a spicy smoked fish with tangy green sauce, wrapped up in banana leave. It’s similar to Bangla Paturi, but more devilish in look & taste. Unfortunately, they have now deleted the item , not being liked by villagers. Soups are large and thick. I like the Cream of Chicken. Absolutely sinful. A long list of starters are yet to be tried.

The Sizzlers are served with the usual hiss with mouth-watering looks. Most of them are good, but the quantities vary. It’s useful for villagers to discuss with the waiter before placing the order.

The  garlic pasta is still cooked in front of the table, making the whole restaurant smoky and full of acrid smell. Villagers seeking attention can go for it.

The Wok fried rice is still being served with huge quantities & great taste. Succulent Lambs, Prawns and Chicken dishes go in iandem with rice or noodle varieties. Spicy dishes are marked in menu for easy understanding. You can alter your sauces as white, red or green depending on your taste. The waiters are patient and co-operative on that.

Then you have loads of Biriyani, Butter Chicken, Masala Chicken and much more common village food. It may be noted, they do serve off the menu items, if demanded and given time. e.g- Reshmi Kabab.

Bermuda Triangle Lounge
This is the Bar cum smoking section. The place is dark, hazy, with ear deafening loud music by a DJ. Reminds me of Purple Haze, Bangalore. Average villager’s music – November Rain, Halla re, Hotel California, Crazy Kiya re, Roadhouse Blues etc. Song request s accepted. The loudness is confined by two sound proof doors between the fine dining area. The bar men and some waiters are dressed like cowboys with hat, guns and carries shot glasses in bullet belts. (Reminds me Rodeo, Delhi). They entertain the kids too!

The Ambience & décor

Contemporary Continental influnced with neo-modern school of interiors. Tables are of two shapes, round and rectangular. The rectangular tables are placed along the sidewalls. They can be joined together for large groups. An average villager always prefer window seat in local trains. Same here. Villagers can have a view of the busy street. Round tables, with larger seating capacity are accompanied with sofa, but chairs are more ergonomic.

The Restaurant is brightly lit with lots of luminaries, diffused and direct. Odd shaped bottles with colored herbs & spices are kept at strategic locations. There’s a thought provoking artwork behind the waiting area. The ACis uneven, better to declare the villager’s blood temp to the waiter, beforehand. Avoid punga.

The upholstery, tablecloth and napkins are probably unchanged for years. See reference below.

The Service
The captains and waiters are good, in black suit and smiling. There are two female attendants in the front desk to give you a warm welcome and to manage the long weekend queue. They also clap and sing for you when you dine on B’days or Annivs. Service is slow but steady. They have now developed a strong feedback oriented service. I do receive calls before B’days and annivs offering special discounts. They record villagers’ vital stats through a customer feedback form on first visit. They have started take away and free home service recently.

Other tit-bits
The restaurant is friendly to physically challenged. The elevator comes straight to the entrance lobby.

The toilet is common for drunk & sober . You will find cigarette stub and villagers singing in the urinals. And you know, when drunk, the aim is not good! That keeps the sweeper busy.

Tables can be reserved in advance, barring weekends. Villagers gather in the weekends and the waiting time is directly proportional to the size of the group. A couple? 25 mins. A family of 7? 45 mins.

Valet parking is history now.

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