Saturday, 7 July 2012

Azzuri Bay - Romancing the food !

The diners club, CFG met for yet another brilliant dinner - loads of food, laughter and goodies.

What started off with some delicious super spicy thai soup, with coconut milk, galangal and lemongrass and sent everyone spluttering and gasping, ended on a sweet note, with some fried ice cream, banana toffee and of course, the brandy cream with fresh fruits - which got the ladies slightly tipsy - oh how much we laughed.

And let's see what happened in between.

Note: This post is not going to have any photographs, my camera battery konked off, and Aswin, as usual, forgot his. Jai did lend us his Sony digital camera, but then we were all more intent on eating than shooting. 

Update: I did manage to get Aswin to do some photographs of the goodie bag and the menu card. And no, I am not giving him any credits here (only because he didn't want me to)

Jai Punjabi, gracious host, doesn't fail to appreciate other restaurants' good food. Now that's a sign of a true restaurateur. (Too bad Junior Kuppanna is predominantly non-veg :-( ) As we all went through a round of introductions, settled in our seats and rolling our eyes at the huge menu card placed in front of us, I was delighted because this custom menu put together for the Diners Club, was an equal opportunity treat ! There were as many dishes in the vegetarian menu, as in the non-vegetarian category. This always makes me grin ear to ear. (Ganesh Jayaraman - take note :-) )

3 starters - veg gold bag, steamed momos, and vegetable murtabak - every dish had unique flavors; Personally I loved the momo (because it's steamed and not fried - health conscious you see) - with the three sauces - peanut, sweet chilli and a mango. My mint sauce never turned up though. I wanted to have my momos with mint sauce (or chutney)

A head count for welcome drink was on - Pina Colada or Thai Iced Tea - Bala started counting - the count went - Thai Iced Tea to Pina Colada - 4-2, 5-2, 6-2, and Avanti suddenly yelled - me too ! ROFL moment !

A few words on the Thai Iced Tea - condensed milk, infused with tea, with loads of lemon grass and a stalk peeping out like a straw - excellent. I am not too fond of pineapple and generally find anything to do with pineapple too sweet for my liking. So no comment there.

Conversation ranged from Nigella's antics on screen (the queen of food porn), Seema delighting us with her performance of Nigella, (and so did Ali), and Erica's witty comments, CFG 8th anniversary plans, to rice stuffed in dogs (*puke puke*)

Bala skipped some main courses to attack the dessert, but I was intent on tasting all the items on the menu.

The salad was a combination of tofu and cucumber and cabbage, and it was warm - funny in a way - I've never had warm salad. Let's say - I am not a big fan of this.

The main course started off with roti-canai (yes that's one dish), sort of like a parotta, nan and roti combined and rolled into one, served with basil tofu (fresh tofu tossed in thai basil, garlic, onions).  It felt like I was eating chapati with dry cabbage sabzi. Though I loved the flavors of basil, I didn't think it made a good combination with the roti-canai. Usually, as Ali said, we like rotis with a nice gravy :D :D (talk of tastebuds :P)

The next one was Singapore Chilli noodles with Beijing Machurian - I had 2 helpings - loved it. The vegetable balls were tender, well soaked in the gravy. 

The main course ended with herb rice served with penang curry (combination of cinnamon and cloves with coconut milk, galangal, onions and lime). We did think it was raw and needed a little more tempering. (On that note, Thank you Jai for the penang curry paste as part of goodie bag) The penang curry was served quite late, by which time, I'd eaten the herb rice with the Beijing Manchurian.

We decided to take walk before dessert, as the food was too heavy and we needed to jazz up some space in the tummy. As we headed down, it started raining, and we ran back inside. And surprise surprise, it stopped raining ! HUH So much for deciding to take a walk.

The dessert platter came on - 3 items on the menu - fresh fruits with brandy cream, banana tossed in caramel and served with ice cream, garnished with sesame seeds and fried ice cream. Pick of the lot,  was the fresh fruits with brandy cream. I didn't quite like the banana tossed in caramel - I mean, it's me, not the dish. The fried ice-cream was good but perhaps it had melted by the time they plated up 10 plates.

We were all stuffed. It was a happy evening for the heart, soul and tummy. What a way to spend an evening - Totally delighted.

Jai handed out the goodie bags, and we were kicked like little kids receiving prizes. It had a nice statue of Buddha, a jar of penang curry paste and a gift voucher (Jai - sneaky you - you made sure we'll come back again :P )

A big thumbs up ! I only wish I really could see the sea (instead of having someone tell me - can you see there - that's the beach - it sort of felt like a Tambrahm wedding where the bride has to step on the ammi kallu and then she'll be asked to see the "Arundathi" star which obviously one cannot see in the day time, and they'd show it from some random window, and you won't even know which direction to look at! :P :P You just nod your head, so as to not be embarrassed ;-) )

Good show Jai Punjabi. Take a bow. I did hear a lot of good feedback from many friends, and some not-so-good from a few others but honestly, I truly enjoyed the evening and will come back again, perhaps armed with my camera to do some lovely shots of your place and the food !


  1. I loved the Iced Tea as well.. Something very different.. Surprisingly I loved the roti-canai. I love to have dry ones :P.. Overall, I had such a wonderful time wid you guys... Shall meet up soon for more such events

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Munch on....