I am a foodie, hard-core ones, so to speak. Come rain or the sun, come snow or storm, nothing stops me from my gastronomical explorations. This time around, my journey took me to the latest entrant in the Kala Ghoda food scene – Henpecked.
The restaurant which has replaced Farmer & Sons resides in one of the bylanes in the near proximity of BSE. Not the bar, but the stock exchange – where money never sleeps.
Henpecked has beautiful European style interiors that transport you into a world of its own. The walls are characterised by an assortment of artefacts and antique collectables. Warm, Dim lighting and a mix of jazz and soft rock playing in the background added to the comfortable vibe of the restaurant.
We (a friend & I) took the table by the window near the entrance. As we settled in our seats, we were presented the menu and a glass of water each (standard practices). Henpecked boasts of an extensive menu that contains a good number of vegetarian options. Every dish on the menu, from breakfast to dessert had ingredients enlisted under the names. I am a big fan of such menus; they make the decision process much easier. Every dish on the menu seemed equally tempting; we were spoiled for choice. So we asked our server to help us decide. On learning how well-aware he was with the dishes and the flavours, we decided to rely on his recommendations.
By this time, we observed two noteworthy things about the service. First, every table was attended by an individual server who was always at the patron’s disposal. Second, the server explained the dish while serving it to the patrons. Henpecked definitely earned a brownie from me for this.
In order to beat the Mumbai Summer heat, we ordered a couple of drinks. Two out of the three we ordered, the ones that really impressed us, were Pop The Corn and Pink Magic. Pop The Corn was a concoction of butterscotch syrup, cream, and vodka, topped with popcorns. The other one was called Pink Magic – a rose wine and vodka based cocktail flavoured with seasonal fruits and topped with candy floss. The element candy floss made me very nostalgic about my beach picnics where I loved buying candy floss from a local vendor. While the cocktails were strong and flavourful, I did find them a tad bit sweet.
Our thirst was quenched, body cooled down and we were hungry. To our much relief, we were served with food without much ado. Our course began with a portion each of two salads. The first one we dug our forks in was the Butternut Squash and Gorgonzola salad. It consisted of mixed greens, lentils, gorgonzola cheese and chia seeds. The other salad that was served to us was Burrata Caprese. This salad intrigued me with its ingredients – Roma tomatoes, creamy burrata, stone-ground pesto and strawberry balsamic. The sweet-smoky taste of the strawberry balsamic vinaigrette uplifted the flavour of this salad. I would certainly recommend it.
For the mains, we were served a pasta and a pizza. We requested for a Jain version of the Rosa Pasta. If you are a Jain or taking a Jain along, this is the pasta you need to order. The duo of tomato and cream based sauce gave it a pink colour. It consisted of broccoli florets, sweet peppers with a pinch of parmesan. It was a perfect combination of creamy, cheesy with a bit of spice. These flavours were mild but on point. Our Pink Magic cocktail paired well with the pasta.
Next, we devoured the Cheese Duet Pizza. Sounds like too much of carbs and fat already? Well, who cares. Diet wasn’t my thing anyways. So, with my new found affinity for Burrata, every bite of this pizza felt heavenly. The contributors to the incredible flavour of this pizza were goat cheese, burrata, pickled onions, balsamic onions, spinach, and garlic oil. It was a delicious experience overall.
Another interesting dish that made it to our table was the Baked Cottage Cheese. The beautiful plating of the dish made it all the more tempting. This dish consists of basil pine nut, cottage cheese, and house slaw. It was a good dish.
A friendly chat with the bartender introduced us to Henpecked’s attempt at giving cocktails an Indian twist. In this spirit, he made a unique cocktail for us called Pickle-A-To. It was a combination of pickles and some other white spirits. It comprised of dates, aam papad, jaggery, vodka, rum, gin, tequila, and tomatoes. It was served in small and cute pickle jars.
A meal without desserts is incomplete. So we finished our meal with an Apple Crumbled Pie (Eggless), a must for dessert lovers.
Henpecked was a good experience overall. We enjoyed the food, ambience as well as the service. I hope to return to this place sometime again to try out the other variety on the menu.