Santacruz

Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the world; second busiest in India when it comes to sheer passenger traffic. The airport caters to over 50 million passengers each year and is spread over an expansive property of 1,450 acres. The terminal 2 of the very airport has been conferred with the prestigious American Institute of Architects Award 2020.

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Mumbai is a city which is known for its constant developments and we’re highly fond of the fact that this city, even though is quite expensive, finds it way to make it easier for us, the middle-class!

Given the trends of staying in quirky hotels which are also within our budgets, IRCTC is planning on setting up pod hotels near the Mumbai Central Railway Station and we’re curious to try ‘em out!

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Derived from a Japanese concept, these chic and cost-effective pods will charge lesser than the regular railway retiring rooms and are aimed at transit guests and backpackers.

These minimalistic pods will come in 3 variants and the economic yet evolved inns will be equipped with amenities such as TV, Wi-Fi, personal lockers, sliding doors, lounge, a cafe, changing facilities and a washroom!

According to Zee News, The Western Zone group general manager Rahul Himalayan stated, “With an aim to give ultra-modern staying options to passengers at a cheaper rate, we have come up with the idea of pod hotels. We shall soon begin working on the project. This will also be the first time that a Japanese style capsule accommodation will be given to passengers by any railway station in India.”

So if you’re a business traveler looking for a night’s accommodation or an explorer on a tight budget, these pod hotels will be your refuge!

A nondescript hidden gem in the by-lanes of Santacruz East, Thotrin serves authentic North-Eastern flavours like no other in the city!

You’d look and feel like this is another ‘Chindian’ joint but if you explore further, it’s actually a homegrown eatery which serves Naga and Manipuri Cuisines majorly! Although the joint has a quaint air-conditioned seating arrangement, Thotrin Café is big on the flavours and quantity.

Both the cultures which they serve on our plates, are also known for their love of meat but they use a variety of greens too which is almost a testament to the biodiversity that is prevalent in their regions!

Thotrin’s menu is stocked with meat recourses for you to devour but when here, we’d suggest you to take up an indelible adventure. Move over the staid options of the regular proteins like mutton and chicken and opt for their snail delicacy, which this kiosk has been ‘s’nailing absolutely.

The Star Savoury!

Escargo with Hoksa, which is pork cooked in bamboo shoot soup with snails, is the star here and if you’re a foodie & adventurer at heart, you gotta spoon through this dish! The dish is made of fatty pork chunks and you’ll spot tiny black snails swimming in a thin funky-smelling gravy. You can opt for a chutney made from ‘Yongchaak’ which is also known as the ‘stink bean’.

The snails here are sourced directly from a town called Ukhrul in Manipur and this lends a certain amount of earthiness to the gravy, which is further seasoned with diced ginger, garlic, king chilli and a specific type of Mexican coriander called maroi. The uniqueness of this dish, pulls in crowd from around and although it smells a lil’ pungent, the flavors are delicious yet simple.

Thotrin Cafe is bound to become an all-time favourite for those who haven’t sampled Manipuri and Naga cuisine yet and we’re sure, this place will take the cake with its hospitality too!

This pygmy eatery is perhaps a reminder too, of the diverse communities thriving in the city, making it a flavourful place, one dish at a time.

Location: Shop 2, Kolivery Village, Opposite St. Roque, Kalina, Santacruz East, Mumbai

Timings: 12noon – 11pm

Cost: ₹650 for two people (approx.)

Mid-week weekend craving is a disease that we all suffer from. The urge to rush towards the weekend and take a break already is something that ails us all. To see our friends, hangout with people from work or just chill with a glass of wine or a beer is often something that we need to push us further in the week.

So if you’ve been having second thoughts about where to go and what to do, for this mid-week session, head to Bombay Cocktails Bar and say buh-bye to all the indecisions.

The interiors here are classic, leather couches and rustic brown furniture give you an extremely relaxed vibe as well as do well to give a classic yet elegant feel to the interiors. The bar is perfect for an impromptu session with friends where you gather around a booth, with a few drinks in hand and bitch about the boss or your work.

It is also one of the best places to find yourself a few good cocktails, as the name would suggest. The tipsy kala khatta and the spiced cucumber martini will refresh you right off, while the Nomayo and Saveur will give you the much needed kick.

We would suggest ordering the classics and the BCB special cocktails with a ton of finger food.

Speaking of food we would also recommend getting a platterful of crispy fried fish fingers, creamy butter prawns, coriander prawn bites, a dish of pasta or a big pizza to share over the beers. The food here is quite good, so you wouldn’t go wrong with the classics.

While in the evenings the bar is alive with music, alcohol and people, yet in the afternoon, the aroma of freshly baked breads and curries waft the bar. SO be it an office lunch, a meetup with friends or a just ‘something casual over drinks’, Bombay Cocktail Bar is the place to be at.

Nestled in the bustle of South Bombay, Old Times’ Sake in Santacruz is a bar that is an ode to the Golden era of music. Inspired by the flashing lights, the neon and the music of 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, the bar is one of the coolest places you’ll step in. In the world of industrial cafes, metal chairs, barstools and minimal decor, this place is like a breath of fresh air.

With neon lights gleaming from the top ceiling, guitars on the wall, eccentric murals and tables adorned with old vinyl records, Old Times’ Sake is a must visit in Santacruz.

The bar is beautifully decorated, with its every single detail calling to the era when, The Beatles crooned, John Lennon was the king and Kurt Cobain was hailed as a God. The era of good music, good food and good times.

The bar will have you reminiscing of the decades gone by, while the old cassettes croon slowly in the background. The place is perfect for a good hangout session with friends or a late night drinking affair.

After you’ve enjoyed the vibed and had your fill of the decor, plunge into the expansive menu and surround yourself with the wafting aroma of food cooked to perfection. Even though Old Times’ Sake is a bar, anyone who’s been here will swear by the food.

The bar serves some of the most delicious and enjoyable dishes that you can pair with drinks and chomp away towards a great night.

Order yourself a pulled pork pizza, pollo salsa piccante, spicy mustard chicken, penne mama rosa, or any other dish from the very small yet a brilliant menu and eat yourself into a food coma.

Order a round of drinks, get a few craft cocktails and have a wonderful time.

Date night is probably that one thing we look forward to all week. A simple meal with your significant other with free flowing conversation, great ambience, good food and a few drinks is a simple pleasure we cannot live without. A beautiful ambience only adds to the entire experience and when it comes to the special someone, the prettier the place the better it is.

The Looney, The Lover and The Poet in Bandra has the perfect spot for the precious date nights and the dinner dates with BAE.

The outdoor seating will surpass any date night expectations you’ll ever have and give you the most romantic setting for a good old heart-to-heart.

Inspired by the Shakespearean masterpiece “A midnight summer’s dream”, The Looney, The Lover and The Poet offers three distinct seating arrangements for the different kinds of needs a modern epicure has. A magical garden-esque, outdoor cafe-bar front, a casual family dining room inside and a dim lit secluded lounge at the back.

Though, the outdoor seating is not the only thing that will make you fall in love with this place.

The people at The Looney, The Poet and The Lover know their way around the kitchen and serve some of the most original and stunning dishes. Their food scene is epic. The people here know how to spruce things up and have glamified even the most basic dishes like kulcha, turning it into ‘Posh Kulchas’. Duck stuffed brik pastry topped with an egg, the lamb naked burger and the filo chicken Posh Shawarma are dishes that you have to try.

It is noteworthy that the restaurant will be an absolute delight for all the vegans out there with enormous vegan and vegetarian options. You will find the most delicious of avocado toasts, artichokes and sundried tomato salad and zaatar stuffed olives feta cream here.

We would a hundred percent recommend trying out the refreshing drinks here. The bar here is known to serve unique and unheard of cocktails that will all but take you on a ride through a summery valley. We recommend the ‘That Season after Pilates’- a cool banana and avocado concoction with a dash of bourbon, ‘Talk to me’- an indulgent mix of nutella, washed bourbon toasted hazelnut and cinnamon and ‘Sunset in Summer’- a risque blend of smoked whiskey, jalapeno, rosemary, ginger syrup and fresh beer.

Almost a Detox and Sass and spice are pretty great too.

Go to The Looney, The Lover and The Poet for your next dinner date and enjoy the beauty of dining under the starlight.

Sindhi cuisine is often described as comfort food, because it is. Period. Originating from the North Western part of the country (Gujarat, Rajasthan), Balochistan and Pakistan, Sindhi cuisine has for long been revered as the most heart warming cuisine. To give us a taste of the food of Sindh, Chef Mohit Chotrani opened his passion project The Sindh Kitchen. The Sindh Kitchen is a small delivery and takeout joint with a small seating and it has already made a home in our hearts.

The kitchen aims to keep alive the food tradition of Sindh, hence most recipes are unadulterated, untouched and authentic. The food they serve here will not only have you drooling but will also give you a warm hug, the sort that can only be had after having an extremely wonderful meal.

Crispy Kachaloo (Left) | Butter Biscuit Chat (Right)

There’s much to try here, as the love and passion that has been poured into the kitchen shows itself through the food. We would recommend trying the famous Dal Pakwan- a soft mushy lentil curry, made with robust spices and garnished with raw onions and coriander and served with crispy, flaky pakwan.

You should definitely try the Sindhi Kadhi with Chawal and Aloo Tuk, the kick of the whole spices and the creamy yogurt Kadhi create a beautiful union with simple steamed rice while the deep fried to perfection aloo tuk play with textural combination of crispy and creamy.

Sindhi Chicken Pulao inspired from the traditional Sindhi Mutton Pulao

They also serve a variety of small snacks and quick bites that you can grab to experience a whole new kind of snacking. Try the chicken/mutton keema pattice with Sindhi chhola and the butter biscuit chat, while the former is indulgent and super rick the latter will add a refreshing twist to your snacking experience. The Sindhi Dahi Vada, soaked in tangy tamarind chutney, sweet curd, and a zingy green chutney will remind you of the many Indian festivals and that ‘maa ke hath ka swad’.

Sindhi Thali

And if the small snacks and couple of dishes do not cut the bill for you, try the Sindhi Thali. The thali comes with a variety of accoutrements such as Seyal Pav, Aloo Tuk, Kadhi Chawal, Dahi Vada, Mixed Seyal Bhaji and Phulkas. Topped off with Boondi, Papad and Sindhi Achar.

Make sure to try the Sindhi special Thandai which will take the edge right away from the summers and cool you down instantly.

The best part? Nothing here costs over ₹400, except the thali which costs ₹450 for veg and ₹499 for non veg. So you can enjoy dishes that are 5 star quality without paying the price. The restaurant is available on most food delivery platforms so can get the food delivered right to your door and enjoy the real taste of Sindh from within the comforts of your home.

Cyclone Fani has hit Odisha and has devastated the southern state, now the cyclone has moved towards West Bengal to wreak havoc and remind people that nature indeed is extremely strong. The cyclone that originated in the Bay of Bengal is fiercer than any cyclone Odisha has seen in the past 20 years. And if the weather and atmospheric conditions remain the same, Mumbai could very soon have a devastating cyclone.

Acclaimed author Amitav Ghosh has been writing and warning people of the impending climate change that may catch Mumbai and its people off guard.

To say that Mumbai is overcrowded will be an understatement, with so many people migrating to the city of dreams the density of Mumbai is off the charts. With such a high population density and every inch of it occupied, the threat has become very real. Amitav urges people to realize the kind of effect even a small cyclone can have on the city, let alone something as terrible as Fani.

Ghosh has been very active on social media, making sure that his voice and the plight of hundreds of people is heard across all platforms. The author even in his book, The Great Derangement: Climate Change and the Unthinkable, warns of the said threat.

The uptick in cyclonic activity in the Arabian Sea is so recent that there has yet been no need for large scale evacuations on the subcontinent’s west coast. Whether such evacuations could be organized is an open question. Mumbai has been lucky not to have been hit by a major storm in more than a century”: an excerpt from his book read.

The Fact is

Mumbai has been lucky in the past, it has been extremely lucky. But if we take in account the climatic change and the emergency like situation that has risen in the world, with the temperatures rising and the glaciers melting, Mumbai is awaiting its reckoning.

It is true that the efforts of Odisha government have been highly acclaimed and they have done a laud worthy job to evacuate the coastal region. Yet, if it comes down to Mumbai the poorly planned city will have to suffer severe repercussions.