Food Prowl Team (L-R): Dr. Anupam Potdar, Chinmayi Bhambure, Varun Khanna, Kainaaz Bokdawalla, Suryabhan R. Shinde (Owner, TUF), Ritesh Tiwari, Aditya Gokhale, Gouresh Kambli and Satwik Shetty.Restaurant Name: The Urban Foundry Location: B-3, Ground Floor, Cerebrum IT Park, Marigold complex, Kalyani Nagar, Pune, Maharashtra 411014 Buzz: +91-86699 90909 After resounding success of their Balewadi and Colaba outlets, THE URBAN FOUNDRY recently opened its new branch at Kalyani Nagar, continuing with the same theme of innovation and fusion which they are synonymous with. The menu though at Kalyani Nagar is entirely different. TUF team has continuously kept clear distinctions between all their branches.
The restaurant has all the The Urban Foundry quirks and signature theme elements, it has a 3600 bar at the heart of it all with rotating lamps.
The Food Prowl Team was invited for a Pre-Launch Food Tasting by Suryabhan R. Shinde, Owner, The Urban Foundry who also played a gracious host.As we arrived and got settled, cocktails started flowing. Interesting look and infused with unique flavors. We tried more than 10 cocktails, each having an inimitable ingredient, some of the favorites of the evening were Smoke Star, The First Man, The Cube, Wiki Waki Woo.
Smoke star was made with parmesan infused bourbon flavored with pineapple juice, lime, vanilla and smoked, the flavors were deep, and the smoke made it aromatic and more complex, vanilla is the star that makes everything more pleasing.
The First Man: White rum cocktail that had freshness of tropical juices and complexity imparted from caramel, the balance of varying flavors in this drink were astonishing and made us keep wanting more of it.
The Cube was served in a wine glass with a huge frozen cube of orange juice it has vodka and sparkling wine as base and flavors of elder-flower, orange and elder-flower together made the after taste dawdle for long.
Wiki Waki Woo: A drink towards the other end of flavor spectrum. It had prominent coffee notes and after taste with a base of whiskey and vodka with coconut flavoring. In addition to these there were cocktails that had flavors like rosemary, jasmine, hibiscus, tea, wasabi and elderflower. They also have beer-based cocktails like Passion Blaster and Casting Couch.
While the drinks were being served our food started rolling in. Fusion food to its core, smart fusions that is. Fusion between modern and traditional, street food and gourmet, Indian and global, all sorts of combinations.
Edamame Bhel: Edamame is mostly an ingredient in Asian food and Dumplings but here it was made like our favorite local snack - Bhel. Edamame with a good bite to it mixed with the usual bhel ingredients but an unusual dressing. The dressing made the dish fabulous and pleasing our senses thoroughly. Pepper & Saffron Cream Tangdi: Perfectly cooked delectable chicken legs with a peppery flavor topped with a creamy sauce adding more depth to the flavor spectrum. Tilwala Paneer: A sesame infused Indian masala, nice Indian flavors. Asian Patrani Chicken: A brilliant fusion dish, prepared in a banana leaf like all patras but instead of fish they had used chicken and not in a local masala but infused with fresh Asian flavors, it worked well on the palate and everyone had a second helping. Mushroom Tunday Kebab: Vegetarian take on the world famous lucknowi galouti kebab. They should rather name it as Mushroom Galouti as tunday is reference to a person and not type of a dish, though it has become synonymous over time. Dumplings are an essential part of menus there days and who doesn’t love these delicate pockets of goodness. All dumplings had a very thin and non-pasty covering, the rare thing here was we liked the Vegetarian options more than Non-Vegetarian. The best of them was Malai Broccoli Dumplings, gentle flavors and textures, they just melted in my mouth, too good. Magik Mushroom Dumplings: A mélange of mushrooms with simple flavors, perfect. The non-veg dumplings were fusion style Kalimirch Chicken Dumplings and Kheema Ghotala Shumai, both had very Indian flavors, while chicken one had cracked pepper on it the kheema one had a kabab like flavor, good ones. The texture of the filling in chicken one could have been better. Tandoori Momos Murgwala, the flavors and coating texture was spot on, they have that tandooriness to them. The texture of filling was like Kalimirch dumpling a little lumpy than the granular texture normally associated with it. From Asian we moved to some dishes that everyone has loved on Indian menus for decades. Gold Coins have been on all Chindian restaurants, TUF has made its own version with Prawn Golden Coin. It had prawn mince and not whole prawns and that worked for the dish, the mash layer on a bread coin topped with sesame, no fusion to spoil those childhood memories, a dip in a sauce of preference and it was a walk down the memory lane. The quintessential cheese poppers were made more special by adding bacon to the mix, Bacon Cheese Poppers and the pink shades of the filling were pure love. Nawabi Seekh Kebab were also not played around with, they were made just the traditional way, juicy meaty, not over spiced seekh kebabs. The menu just didn’t have all these piping hot starters, but few cold ones as well. We were served Baconnaise, a bacon based thick dip, served with ciabatta like thin crisp bread, it is a good dish to munch on, the taste of Bacon can be a little more prominent. Chicken Tikka Carpaccio Chaat: A cold salad made as an Indian chaat, tasted good had a little extra leafy content. Carpaccio is all about thinly sliced meat and minimalist dressing, the leaves took that away from the dish.
Tuna & Truffle Pizza, a Japanese style experiment with pizza, this was one very new and innovative dish, a wafer-thin crust with only a cheese-based sauce spread and tuna and cucumber slices as topping, served cold. It was like a breath of fresh air and on a humid day it felt really pleasing preparation.To extend the Pune’s new-found love for Sushi, this TUF has a live Sushi kitchen. We were served 4 types of Maki Rolls and they tasted equally good, the wasabi had that definite hit and the platter had all the necessary condiments. The Indian fusion of Tandoori Chicken Sushi didn’t work that well. Sushi is all about raw fish/seafood and few other veg raw ingredients like avocado and cucumber, that simplicity was lost with chicken and the tandoori masala. Cheesy Corn Sushi, Creamy Avacado Sushi and Dynamite Lobster; all worked well, and they would suit the Indian palate as well because they have some garnish or addition to it that made it slightly more flavorful than the usual Sushi. After all these courses we were brave enough to tryout some mains and desserts as well, the mains were a full meal and with the Curry Rice or Roti are served. Dabba Gosht, that had a robust flavor of mutton curry from slow cooking and it also had boiled eggs in the curry, it can be had with roti or naan as per ones liking. Calcutta Style Chilli Chicken a true Chindian heartthrob for generations now, it was perfect, and one could choose between fried rice or hakka noodles. YanGon Prawn Curry was served with Jasmine Rice, the rice was aromatic and sticky, the curry was sublime, typical Asian flavors that we all love. Dal Bati Khowsuey: This was the Superstar from all the dishes we tasted. It may sound weird but all Dal Bati lovers should try this. They haven’t toyed around with traditional Dal Bati but have made it spot on, and have served it as Khowsuey, so the condiments on the side add more flavor and texture to the dal and you can add or not add them as per your own liking. Dunk that ghee laden Bati in the Dal and sail away to foodie’s heaven! Three unique and different Desserts were served. Frozen Gajar Halwa: A Kulfi made with carrot, but it didn’t taste like the halwa as it obviously didn’t have the flavor from the ghee and slow cooking of the halwa. It would be better to name it as Gajar Kheer Kulfi at best as the carrot flavor was very mild. The Foundry Cheesecake: New York style baked Cheese Cake with slices on Gulab Jamun in it. This actually worked, the flavors didn’t fall apart and also it wasn’t very sweet surprisingly.
Last but not the least was the Motichoor Sushi which may bring weird or inquisitive thoughts, and we had the same feeling. But it turned out to be much better than what we were expecting. It was like a Sushi roll with motichoor. It was slightly cold, the fruits on were black grapes and plum which worked alright, but if a fruit goes sour, it will play spoil sport. Thus, the fruits in this sweet Sushi must be chosen very carefully.
In summary if you are in a mood to try something out of the box be it cocktails and food but don’t want to take a risk on how it would be head to The Urban Foundry, you won’t be disappointed, and the vibe of the place will set the pace nicely for a good evening.
The Urban Foundry, Kalyani Nagar, Pune | Food Prowl - The Hunger Stories