Brunching is my favourite weekend activity! What better way to use the mid-day meal than catch up with friends over creative variations of the classic dishes? In all honesty, I’m always enthusiastic to try extensive brunch-es, irrespective of my mad schedule. Mostly because, savouring a wide range of cuisines, ends up reviving my travel experiences. Besides, an extended Sunday Brunch at Tiqri always allows more time for conversations. (That too, in the company of refreshing chic cocktails)
At Tiqri Bar & Lounge, you can take your taste buds on an unforgettable adventure. Despite the fact that Tiqri takes its name from a lost Rajasthani art form, it brings a melting pot of international flavours to your table. Of all things, what truly makes Sunday Brunch at Tiqri special, is its 60 feet tall and 40 feet wide backdrop, featuring a stunning Tree of Life. Created from 4,000 pieces of broken glass, this tree, transforms into a mesmerising light show, in the evening.
Sophisticated Brunch, anything but Rushed
On 21st Jan, I invited Sujata, one-of-my journalist friend to join me for the Sunday Brunch at Tiqri. We were made to sit at the best table, in the middle of the restaurant. This one was basking in pure sunlight, exhibiting best views on both sides. (I highly recommend you arrive early to grab this table) The starburst chandeliers are another unique thing to notice at Tiqri. In the evening, these starburst lighting foretells a story in the shades of blue and green.
From the moment, I stepped to the time I was seated, I sauntered my way along world-class variations amid spectacular vistas. Legends have it, the noon sunshine works best, to reproduce your natural diet. Now that totally got me intrigued, for the architects must have put a lot of thought, before weaving the ceiling in the trademark Taj elegance. Note that, inside the restaurant, the natural sunlight is the ambient lighting wherein, the accent lighting is the one that highlights Tiqri art form, adding a dramatical effect to space.
Gastronomic Tour inside Tiqri’s Magnificence
By the time, I could wrap my head around the magnificence of Tiqri’s luxurious interiors, an attendant arrived with a Signature Strawberry Cocktail. Bursting with fresh strawberries, this refreshingly fruity drink had our brunch party started.
Tiqri is too much love packed in a grand setting, along with, a multi-cuisine fare. I will admit, even the best of bronze cloches, failed to immobilise, the irresistible food aroma from across the room. This was my first Sunday Brunch, at the new runway-view Taj Santacruz, at Mumbai Domestic Airport. Sinking into the comfort, of Tiqri’s Orange leather, reclining club chair, I watched Sun, play merry go round for quite a while.
It’s phenomenal to watch Sun casts its reflection on the extensive “Tree of Life” from close range. Footing in its most subtle shades, the Tree gleamed as the Sun slowly and gradually moved over the roof. What an experience! Guess it also felt a little better with Taj’s Signature Homemade Cocktail.
Tiqri’s Lavish Sunday Brunch
In no time, we were luxuriating in lavish vegetarian, seafood, and meat-centric delights. When at Tiqri, start with their ‘Amchi Mumbai’ food collection. By good fortune, our opening first-course veg appetiser happened to be this wonderfully textured Kothimbir Vadi. A Mumbai speciality, with intense Maharashtrian flavours.
These crisp Coriander Fritters were so soft from inside that I kept saying Wow all the time. (The trick to that is, the besan dough is first steamed, then sliced, and then deep-fried) We were also made to taste the authentic ‘coconut-y’ Chicken Sukka and unleavened bread from the Maharashtrian Food Festival assemblage.
Followed by which, came the deliciously vibrant Asian Prawn Capsicum stir fry. An impressive dish with authentic Chinese flavours and freshness of spring onions.
More food followed in time, such as the flavourful Chicken Tandoori Lollipop, Asian Dimsums, and a Signature Mushroom Bowl by the Sous Chef. The lip-smacking Tandoori Lollipop was a complete delight to taste. The yoghurt battered chicken was tender to the bone, along with, a mild coating of Indian spices on the outer layers.
The spicy chicken bites will melt in your mouth as soon as you munch into the tender chunks slathered in mild Indian spices. Indeed a succulent treat! Following that came the rubbery Dimsums that failed to impress my palate. Instead, the signature mushroom bowl prepared by the Sous Chef saved the day.
This ‘Mushroom Patty’ speciality item was served in an exclusive mushroom sauce with just the right portion of herbs and veggies. Also, impressive presentation, don’t you think? Oh! and I also pretty much tripped on the Mushroom Pate with Cheever Mousse and Crunchy Nuts, a small dish for a mushrooming appetite.
Inching past lunchtime at Taj Santacruz
After tasting appetisers, I was ready to traverse, the great walking buffet. Tiqri had me going as soon as, I hit the Roasted Pumpkin Salad counter.
Let me remind you, the restaurant has a great selection of exotic salads ranging from Ham, berry yoghurt, Confit Lamb, Chicken terrine to so much more.
Thus, don’t overstuff yourself with salads, because, the main course is the real showstopper.
My Main course favourites ranged from Bengali Fish Curry (cooked in mustard sauce), fresh Wok tossed seafood, Cranberry rubbed drumsticks, to Raan-E-Shaandaar.
I was far too tempted to try the biryani, however, I was so full that I could only have that or the desserts. Well! everyone loves tasty desserts and could kill for those delicious Swiss rolls, Macarons, Cupcakes, and Mousses.
Desserts I chose! Here have a look and tell me if you could resist that?
Sunday Exclusive at Taj Santacruz
All in all, brunching at Tiqri’s Bar & Lounge was a phenomenal experience! If time was not a constraint and I didn’t have to fly to another city, I think I would have liked spending more time here. I finished my Sunday brunch at 4 PM, by downing a double shot of espresso, embarking on the thoughts of the next trip.
The service at Taj is undoubtedly the best, but, when the trained staff goes out of their way to help you, it’s then you know, the hotel is certainly well worth its reputation. I got additional help with luggage, wi-fi, and booking a cab that made a big difference in the moment. Above all, the exclusive unspoilt natural beauty I experienced, at Tiqri will stay with me for life.