Fast but far from junk: Sindhudurgh

I have become quite fond of a restaurant called Sindhudurgh at Bandra East. Its main branch is at Dadar I think.

It is quite close to Bombay's new commercial hub, BKC or Bandra Kurla Complex. My job often takes me to BKC for client meetings. Sindhudurgh has become my favoured haunt for a quick and sumptuous bite.

Sindhudurgh serves Malwani cuisine which is native to the state of Maharashtra. So it is as close to local food as one could get at Bombay or Mumbai which is the capital of Maharashtra. The food is spicy and has a strong coconut base. Fish is the favoured meat here which is natural given this a coastal cuisine.

Sindhudurgh is neighboured by two, far more famous, Malwani joints - Highway Gomantak and Amaya. So why head to Sindudurgh? Well the other two as I said are far more popular. So you have long queues during lunch time and they are fairly congested, non air conditioned and grimy. Sindhudurgh, on the other hand, is relatively empty and air conditioned. And the food is good. So it meets the need a working executive's lunch. I must confess that this is not necessarily a gourmand's perspective.

You get a an a la carte range at Sindhudurgh as well as set meals or thalis (literally 'plates'). We go for the latter as it fast and gives a good variety. In fact it is served within a maximum of five minutes of your placing the order. Then it depends on how fast you eat. There have been occasions where I have stepped in at 1 pm and left by 1.25 PM well in time for a 1.45 PM meeting at BKC.

My usual order is the 'special thali'. You get:

  • 3 soft, oil/ ghee soaked chappatis (large, round, soft and thin which is typical to Bombay)
  • a big bowl of steamed rice
  • a vegetable dish
  • a bowl of kokum curry which is a digestive drink made with a local fruit called kokum and ginger. It has a nice pungent taste
  • a choice of fried fish coated with a rava or semolina batter. I have tried pomfret and surmai (in the photo) though my favourite is Bombay Duck which is a thin, tender fish which melts in one's mouth when fried
  • a meat/ fish/ prawn masala. The meat is served in a thick coconut masala and a spicy, red, watery gravy is given as an accompaniment. I am quite fond of the chicken option here. The chicken pieces are quite tender and succulent and go very well with the grainy masala

This feast costs around Rs 140 (3 USD).

The only flip side is that you are likely to snore through any meetings which you might attend in the afternoon after eating this.