Saturday, January 30, 2010

Mediterranean Calling at the Azulia, GRT Grand Hotel

The movie plan was squashed in the last minute and we were back to square one. My friend dropped in for a chat to get over the disappointment and a long hard day at work. While we got talking, mid-way we decided to eat out at the Azulia. My mom had just walked in after a long tiring walk and the temptation to shut down the kitchen was an easy decision for her.

I had heard a lot about the Azulia at the GRT, for its Mediterranean cuisine, the lovely ambiance, which also included a live band. When we got there, we could not fathom the entrance door. We were happily misguided by a staff and entered the restaurant through the back door!
The live band was a little loud for the small packed place. We felt it more since we were seated too close to the artists, and to make it worse, the music completely overshadowed the conversations or the menu explanation by the attendants. It would have helped if the staff spoke a little slowly with a clear cut pronunciation. My mom was infact wondering what language I used with the attendants and how I decided the menu!

For starters, we settled for the Minestrone soup, followed my eternally favourite Hummus served with Bread. The bread looked like baked puris, and somehow did not appeal to me. But the Hummus was just great. This was followed by the assorted Crostini, one with Artichoke and Cheese, another with Mushrooms, and the third one with bell peppers I think. For the main course, we ordered the Makkaba, which is a baked vegetable dish with a sinful quantity of cheese mixed into it, and the Italian Penne Pasta, in creamy pesto sauce.
The portions were just right and food was delectable, except that the main course proved too heavy for us. So we gave the desserts a miss. The place was crowded and the ambiance could have been more tastefully done given its Mediterranean theme.
The quality of food and presentation is very well done. You also have cuisines from Lebanon, Greece, and Morocco. I think the non-vegetarians may have a little advantage over the menu options, but the vegetarian fare was not too bad either. The menu as expected comes with a high price tag. A meal for two without drinks, could cost you well over 2 grand easily.
But hey, the occasional pampering is good for your soul. So enjoy!

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