No Competition, No Compromise: Kettle & Keg, Mumbai

It’s always a pain to go to Mumbai for business meetings when you are used to Pune’s traffic and weather. We were famished by the time Swathi and I were done with our meeting in Khar. As we were walking off the linking road, I spotted a bright red board, which looked inviting. We started walking towards it only to find out that, the Food was calling the Foodies. It was this new restaurant on the block named Kettle and Keg. We decided to check it out and little did we know that it was going to be a long and memorable lunch.

  

As we entered, we were received and seated by a welcoming waitress. The ambiance was quaint, cosy and inviting; with a modish interior with European touch to it. There is a bar counter, and a chic barista within the restaurant. Wow! Since we were the first ones to come during lunch time, we had all the attention and time of the waiters and the Chef. Aarti, the owner of the place was very forth-coming as she welcomed us and we got talking about the place;she also helped us with the menu.

  

The die-hard foodies that we are, we were beaming to see an elaborate and extensive menu in front of us. We ordered some coolers to sooth ourselves. The Maldives ice tea I ordered was refreshing, apparently the colour goes with the colour of the restaurant. We ordered their signature Misal pav and Papeta Par Eeda on the recommendation of Chef Govind Nayak.

Kettle and Keg Story

Kettle & Keg  is Dev Gill’s brainchild, he always wanted to have his own food joint. For the last two years Aarti and Dev have been planning and looking for an ideal location and final zeroed in on the current location in Khar. They have an assortment of cheese and a must try when you visit this café. For those who don’t know Dev Gill is very popular South Indian Actor, popularly known for his role in Magadheera as Raghuveer.

  

The Name:

They wanted to have something with the coffee and a bit of liquor, that’s why Kettle and Keg, this reminds me of the Sangria I had, which was probably the finest I’ve ever had. We had our food served. One look at it and we were all cameras and gushing and happy to be sharing it with our world.

 

Papeta Par Eeda literally means eggs on potatoes; this Parsi-Gujarati breakfast food can be had all day and no one’s ever going to complain. It was as delicious as it looked. What more?! It had sunny side up and brought sunshine smiles on our faces.

  

We didn’t waste a minute digging in and savouring this and the Misal Pav was served. I was expecting pav and some masaledar curry but it was completely different. One spoon and we were mind-blown! It was anything but oily and spicy. It was a healthy alternative and an alter ego of Misal pav. Made of sabudana(tapioca pearls) and coconut chutney, garnished with sev and onions, lemon and coriander served along with ladi pav. This ladi pav was interesting and smaller version of regular pav and Swathi found it really cute and couldn’t stop gabbing about it. I am not a big fan of sabudana but served this way, I am game any day!

 

  

While we were digging in the delicious food, Dev walked in. Frankly, I don’t watch South Indian movies but know him from Bhag Milkha Bhag. To our amaze, he joined us as well and talked at length about his venture. He was moving around at all the tables, getting feedback and talking with the customers. He spent about an hour talking to us. It was great to know how passionate Aarti and Dev are, about KnK. "We are not competing with anyone”, Dev said, which I believe is true, given all the elements of this place.

  

We wanted try something else, so Dev recommended Roasted Garlic and Rosemary Chicken drumsticks. Why not? The presentation was good and the taste was even better! The chicken pieces were succulent and well marinated and made to appease any palate and guess what?! it didn’t need an accompaniment or any sauce to compliment the dish. It was one the best grilled food I had in a long time. To my Punjabi brothers and sisters, it's just a refined version of our Tangri Kebab.

Who says no to desserts?! We ordered Lava chocolate cake and seasonal and festive delight jaggery-sesame-peanut pie! A heady mix of tradition and contemporary food making art; Truly! It was Lohri and Sankrant special dessert. The aroma and taste time-zoned me back to home. *feels*

  

They specialise their menu according to the season and festivals or occasions! Whoa! Couldn’t ask for more! About Chef Govind It was good to see the head Chef actively participating with the customers and making recommendations. Govind brings 13 years of experience to the table and has worked with some great restaurants in the past before coming on board Kettle & Keg. Dev met Govind in Fable, in Juhu where he used to work earlier and both of them were clear on what they wanted and it worked out! It was interesting to know that out of 750 square metre area; more than half of the area is used by kitchen and the rest is seating. MO of this place according to Govind is "it’s not about serving 100 people but satisfying at least 20 people who’ll remember the place for their food”. Govind and his team use their skills and experiment with various cuisines and ingredients and the common man enjoys the soul gratifying fruits of their labour.

  

From one foodie to another - I recommend this place to everyone out there who is up to try new joints, discover new varieties of food every other week! This place will not disappoint you for sure.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
VAIBHAV ARORA VAIBHAV ARORA

A Movie Buff and Poker Fanatic. Living out of a carry-on; aims to be Lion-tamer and a food-critic. no lover, no I just love to eat

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