Saturday, January 17, 2009
leapfrog into the 'blue frog'
last sunday we decided to go for brunch together with our children and our lovely grandaughter.it had to be a classy place.so we zeroed in on the intercontinental which is famous for its sunday brunches. my daughter called me to say that there would no buffet lunch at the international.so,what was my preference.i said you are the expert,you suggest.and then she said "how about blue frog?" i exclaimed as a thoroughbred veggie with shock, "what!". the name sounded repulsive.she repeated the name. and said that she had been there before and that i should definitely try it out. honestly,the name put me off a little bit.i was hesitant but reinforced by my daughter who has an uncanny sense of what i want, i decided to take a jump and leapfrog.
located in an old cotton mill warehouse,mathuradas, in parel,the entrance to the mill gives you no clue of what you are in for. the exteriors belie the spaceage interiors. once the club doors open you are in a different world altogether.ushered in by cheerful staff, we found ourselves to be the first to arrive at 11.15 am. and then a 'ghazni' looking guy appeared,lifted my hand and stamped on my right wrist. that was a gatepass for me to go out and come in till the session lasted upto 4.45 pm.
cool.it is a swanky place. there are cubicles with a centre table and a sofa around so that about four to five persons can sit comfortably. these tables are called pods. each pod is circled by a mahogany panel. there is a lot of space in the centre which i suppose would be a dancefloor at night. after all it is a famous nightclub too with live music performances. the restaurant has a slick and serene look. the centrepiece of the design is the long bar which gets 100 marks. entry is like into a roman amphitheatre. you go through a narrow passage not well lit, up a flight of stairs and see the panaroma unfolding before you. angled booths at staggering heights. from the seats, diners get a kaleidoscopic view of the dais and the other guests sitting in cubicles all around. there are two large projection screens. on the dais was a band who looked quite bored with just a handful of guests.l said that we had come in too early.the walls have huge bubbles supposedly for better acoustics.they are called acoustic absorbers which help to provide maximum sound quality. the ceiling is high and supported by wooden trusses.the architecture is very trendy.
the view of the buffet at the bar,the assorted tapas, was quite mind-boggling. there were salads galore.before going to the buffet bar we decided to have a drink at the table.h asked for a glass of champagne,l settled for an orange juice and chose for me a bloody mary. grandaughter r was the wisest of the lot. she drank plenty of mineral water.my potion was a stunning drink.it was one of the best,i have ever had.and then l ordered for me waffles with hot chocolate sauce.it was very filling.i wondered whether i would be able to do justice to the wide and exciting-looking spread. then i picked up all the greens from the salad bar and enjoyed the fine combination of spices exhuming a fantastic aroma and the smell of the fresh salads. grandaughter too went to the salad bar and helped by mama picked some bokchoy,beetroot and vermicelli. for the main course there was fish kedgeree,risotto and chicken stuffed parcels with herbs and onion coulis.for veggies,roesti with tossed vegetables and penne tomato with balsamic aubergine.and the grilled stuff included fish-olive tapenade,tiger prawns with spring onion pistau.malaysian chicken.pork ribs-maple and red wine and tenderlion burgers.l ordered a roesti and penne tomato which we both shared. both the dishes tasted delicious. and the 'piece de resistance' was the dessert buffet at the 'pit'. the centre of the complex. wow! what a variety of desserts.it was gastronomic nirvana.l was awestruck at my capacity to eat. how did such food appeal to a typically south-indian palate,she wondered. l was advising me to go slow. probably a bit scared looking at the way i was gorging. but when you pay 2k for a brunch why not make the most of it?
in sum, it was an exhilarating experience. the band disbanded after the first number. it was taped music thereafter. when we were about to leave, the hottest club in mumbai started vibrating. music lovers,food lovers,dance lovers,lovers and lovers started filling up. i must try this exotic club place at night some other time. i am sure it will be an electrifying experience.
this multifaceted outfit was started by two friends phatak and ghanekar who are jazz buffs and composers and musicians.then joined other partners.musicians,filmmakers and an ex investment banker and also a restaurateur.they wanted a 'cool' design for the studio for daily live music performances. the whole restaurant revolves around the music performances which is the main attraction.the business model for this restaurant is different.and it will surely become profitable as the word spreads.you get to see and hear the best music performers and drink the best wine and whisky and enjoy your food simultaneously. the tariff is steep but then you get your buck's worth.
'blue frog' gives a new meaning and dimension to live music. it is a revolutionary music project taken up by 'out of box' thinkers. there is live music performancce six nights a week.the 1000 sq meter complex has most modern sound labs and a music production base. all merge into a cohesive and exciting space offering amazing ambience and an inventive cuisine.
it is a place created by music lovers,of music lovers and for music lovers.