Basilico: a peaceful nook in a mad, mad street

I had a looooong day at work yesterday, I reached home after an excruciatingly long drive thanks to bad traffic only to the knowledge that I would have to work late into night on a case study.
So, on a whim, I told Kainaz that we'd go to Cafe Basilico which is just across our house at Pali Naka, Bandra.
The original Basilico was at Colaba. The one at Bandra is at Pali Naka. Pali Naka is peppered with restaurants. There is a traffic snarl at most hours here. But Basilico has a nice airy feeling with its clean and modern decor - spartan wooden tables, simple yet inviting chairs and an open portico too with lot of plants, the lighting is pleasant. The crowd is relaxed, a counter point to the mad rush outside.
The menu started off as being continental. Though yesterday we saw that they had introduced Sushi and some Mediterranean options too.
We began with a pesto penne pasta. This was very tasty. The pesto was well made and dark in texture. It had a nice, deep, solid taste which was nice given the damp weather. I didn't find any pine nuts though unless it was crushed. Overall a good start to the meal.
We followed this with a Moroccan lamb broth. The lamb was very tender. The broth was slightly tangy and had some very fierce, spicy bites thanks to an abundance of crushed coarse black pepper. It was served with a white pilaf rice while Kainaz had it with a nice, warm garlic bread basket. This was a nice, sunny African, contrast to the woody European taste of the pesto pasta.
We followed this with an old favourite of ours at Basilico, their sugar free gooey chocolate cake. This is so moist and gooey that you can almost sip it! It is extremely tasty and the taste really lingers in your mouth. Frankly I wasn't too hungry but I wanted a bit of energy before I started work after dinner. And Kainaz kept moaning in pleasure as she had it.
One more thing which I like about the food at Basilico versus, say Out of the Blue, is that there is a certain aesthetic appeal to the way they serve their food.
The service is friendly and we were served by a cheerful young man called Ronnie. He made it a point to tell us his name before giving us a feedback form but yes, we were well looked after.
We had a good, unplanned, meal, crossed the road and came home.
The 2 main courses, one dessert and one fresh lime soda cost us Rs 850 or about 21-22 USD.

Comments

Scarlett said…
Can't say I'm a big fan of Basilico. I prefer Out of the Blue :) Go there on a Sunday afternoon & you'll find a guy singing live & playing his keyboard!
Anonymous said…
You've spelled one of my Fav restaurants name wrong thrice! grrr

It is Cafe Basilico. :)

You must have their breakfast there one day, Bagels with cream cheese and the Shakshouka as well as the Eggs BENEDICT. finish with the Apple crumble pie and Cafe Mocha.
The knife said…
@Scarlett: I've been to Out Of The Blue more often than I have been to Basilico and I have recommended it to more people too. This is how I differentiate the two in my mind. OOB has a slightly special, a tad romantic feeling. Basilico is more cosy (something to do with the fact that it is bang opposite my house I guess). I would say that OOB is more a first date place while Basilico is a second date place. This is assuming that one has more funds that I did during my first and second dates :)
@Anonymous: thanks a ton for writing in and 'a thousand apologies' as the Ranjeet of Mind Your Language would say. I was fretting about the spelling last night. Coincidentally I had stepped across to Candies for breakfast right now and checked the spelling of Basilico on the way back. So duly noted and changed :) The breakfast menu you have suggested sounds awesome. I think I'll do it on the independence day weekend. Incidentally my first experience of Basilico was the brunch at Colaba on a rainy Sunday morning, years back.
Anonymous said…
Tks for changing the spelling :):) Iv practically had each thing on Basilico's breakfast menu... as well as Moshe.

You MUST try The Moshe Signature Penne, and the Grilled Rawas (which comes in an edible basket) and is to diee for.

On the breakfast note - try the stuffed Omlette with ham at Mondegear and their chaai.
The knife said…
@Anon...I hate typos too :)

I love a good breakfast...but am not a morning person. So more often than not I would tumble to some place at Bandra (primarily Candies) so I don't see hauling myself to town...But we did go to Moshe's recently (I've written about in July) and just loved the place

My favourite breakfast ? Luchi (Bengali puri) and chholar daal (a sweetish channa daal) which my grandmom makes
The knife said…
@Anon...I hate typos too :)

I love a good breakfast...but am not a morning person. So more often than not I would tumble to some place at Bandra (primarily Candies) so I don't see hauling myself to town...But we did go to Moshe's recently (I've written about in July) and just loved the place

My favourite breakfast ? Luchi (Bengali puri) and chholar daal (a sweetish channa daal) which my grandmom makes
Scarlett said…
Out of the Blue need not necessarily be a date place. It can be a hang out place too. The candle lit tables give it a romantic ambience, I know but they also have those comfy couches along the walls. I like their food more than Basilico's.
The knife said…
@Scarlett: the first date and second part was more using a couple idion to illustrate the point...there is a certain magic at Out of The Blue. Yes it is a good place to hang out as well. In fact I suggested that the last time the office biz heads from across were in town and most liked it. We've had a few nice times with friends too - no double meaning intended. I did try the couch once recently when i went with Kainaz...good fun...hated getting up