It’s easy to see why Indians took to pasta as easily as they did to the Manchurian. Its versatile, tomatoey, creamy and its easy! If you are making it at home, it’s a simple one dish meal and if you are eating out – the endless of possibilities of shapes, sauces and ingredients makes it an exciting dish to call for. A self confessed pasta fan I couldn’t but head to the Spaghetti Kitchen, Malad which is hosting a month long pasta festival. If you are a pasta lover you can’t miss this one.
The warm and cosy setting of large wall clocks, paintings, mosaic tables and checked flooring make it just right to tuck into a bowl of warm pasta with a glass of wine.
Pasta is all quality and simplicity. Start with the best ingredients (read golden hue pasta, extra virgin oil, freshly grated imported Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and farm fresh vegetables and poultry) bring out their flavours and let them shine.
Last year Spaghetti Kitchen started contract growing fresh culinary herbs, in poly houses in the pleasant climes of the Kangra Valley in Himachal Pradesh. This ensures the Italian restaurant chain a year round supply of fresh herbs.
I started with the Warm Gnocchi Salad (Rs 295). A unique combination of soft gnocchi with sweet papaya slices and buttery avocado is a perfect way to start the pasta expedition. You’ve already heard enough of the merits of cooking pasta until al dente. But sometimes chefs in their over zealousness serve pasta that is undercooked. Nitin Lokhande, Executive Chef does a great job of leaving the pasta a little chewy, but well before entering mushy territory.
The next dish to land on my table was the Gluten Free Corn Ravioli (Rs 350). The warm moist flour casing hid garlic infused spinach and crushed pine nuts. The kitchen does a good job of retaining the crunch of the greens and not drowning them in a complex sauce. The ravioli was so good that I promptly polished it down. Only the dishwasher can get the plates cleaner than me!
Pork eaters can go ahead and indulge in Herbed Pappardelle with Ham (Rs 525). Chunky pieces of ham that’s slow cooked with orange glaze and then stirred with a ribbon like pasta is one of those soothing dishes you want to keep all to yourself. Don’t miss the bread basket with freshly baked warm bread. Breaking a small piece and dipping it in a mixture of olive oil, dried herbs and rock salt specially imported from Italy is enough to lure you back to this eatery.
If you don’t want to partake of the pasta festival the restaurant does a very good Spaghetti with Meatballs and thin crust pizza. The staff is an informed and amiable bunch, eager to share their thoughts and recommendations with you. If you are lost just ask for Nitin who is generally tinkering around the kitchen but always ready to help.
Pasta for me is a way of reaching out for a little Italian romance and sunshine into my life. And Spaghetti Kitchen does a great job of doing that.
Spaghetti Kitchen, Inorbit Mall, Malad. Mumbai
Tel: 022 65344660, 022 61273122
By Nivedita Jayaram Pawar
This review first appeared on http://www.clubm.in