Papa passe: Papa Poncho

Yesterday we had dinner at Papa Pancho at Pali Naka, Bandra. The experience was so bad that again I felt I must write about it ASAP.

The sad part is we have eaten there a couple of times before when the food was pretty good. This place which was initially started by ad film maker Prahalad Kakkar seems to have lowered its standards. Prahalad Kakkkar, I believe is no longer a part of this venture.

I should have got a hint of things to come when we saw that the place was hardly buzzing on a Friday night. The two tables which were full in this Punjabi restaurant were occupied by Gujaratis. Again not a good sign for a Punjabi restaurant.

They didn't have a la carte menu so you had to order set meals which came with a main dish of one's choice, black dal, rice/ roti and curd.

The black daal was absolutely without salt and was stone cold. It was a travesty of what this delectable dish normally is. I must admit that the banjara chicken (chicken kebabs sauted in onion) weren't bad. The signature Punjabi dish, butter chicken, was very average and not well flavoured at all. The gravy was thick, colourful, tasteless and one could barely get a bite of chicken. No comparison with the tongue tingling butter chicken which I had had at Moti Mahal in Delhi's South Ex Market.

In terms of ambiance they had a 'dhaba' theme going. Dhabas are roadside restaurants frequented by truckers on inter city highways. They are famous for hot, wholesome, tasty food, A description which would not apply to the fare at Papa Poncho's.

We paid close to Rs 650 or 16 USD for two meals and two soft drinks. I could think of a million better things one could have eaten with the same money.

The feedback form at the end asked if we would ever recommend this restaurant. Guess our answer!