Brunching is my favourite weekend activity! More so because a brunch combines the delight of two meals, primarily breakfast and lunch, allowing me to choose from a medley of classic and unconventional dishes. In Mumbai, Tiqri seamlessly revives my dining experiences, and I was thrilled to receive an invite by Taj Hotels to review their culinary paradise. Tiqri is one of Taj Santacruz‘s striking restaurant, steeped in luxuries of a lost Rajasthani art form. Featuring a 60-feet tall and a 40-feet wide “Tree of Life,” permeated with 4,000 pieces of broken glass, Tiqri takes modern dining a notch higher by dropping traditional beats in the backdrop.
But, do not let the interiors bewilder you just as yet, for the kitchen of Tiqri dishes out a melange of delectable flavours you can’t resist. Besides exhibiting a broad range of Indian and continental dishes, Tiqri, allows soft conversations under natural sunlight. Or a starry night, depending on what time of the day you choose to visit. The impressive ambience, gratifying food, and the encomium of signature Taj cocktails is what truly makes Tiqri’s dining experience wholesome! Tiqri’s sumptuous Sunday brunch is anything but rushed! So, I invited my blogger/journalist friend Sujata to join me for this brunch. As we arrived at the restaurant, we were promptly escorted to a centre table, basking in natural sunlight.
Bursting with lovely starburst chandeliers, the surroundings build on an absolving aura. In the evening, these chandeliers sway in the shades of blue and green. As for the daytime illumination, the accent lighting highlighting the Tiqri art form added a dramatic impact to space. This sequence rises to an incessantly open ceiling, exhibiting every uncia of the Taj culture. Our gastronomy tour kicked off with multiple rounds of signature Taj Santacruz Strawberry cocktails. (Followed by a variety of Indian and western appetisers)
With every bite I took, I sank deeper into the comfort of the orange club recliner, and I think this is what comfort food is all about. It puts you in a relaxation mode while taking your tastebuds on an adventure. Besides, I was seated at a spot from where I could distinctly watch the sun play tick-tock on the Tiqri wall, casting phenomenal reflections over the boundless “Tree of Life.” Right about then, the inexorable aromas of the buffet lunch outspread in the open courtyard, inviting us to unlatch the deliciousness, captivated behind those steaming bronze cloches.
This lavish Sunday buffet was nothing short of a culinary retreat. The waitstaff was kind enough to bring me a few dishes from their ongoing Maharashtrian festival, which added a twist of flavours to my otherwise continental picks. Taj’s Maharashtrian food fest featured succulent Kothimbir Vadi (Coriander Fritters) and coconut-y chicken Sukka with Bhakri, a type of bread.
From the Asian speciality menu, I tasted the stir-fry king prawns, chicken dumplings and a bowl of mushroom soup immersed in authentic Chinese flavours. My favourite, however, was the yoghurt battered Chicken Tandoori Lollipop that came slathered in mild Indian spices. From the brunch buffet, I loved the mushroom Pate stuffed with Cheever mousse and crunchy nuts, the Roasted Pumpkin, berry yoghurt, Confit lamb and my all-time favourite, the Chicken terrine.
From the main course, the showstoppers were the mustard Bengali fish curry, Wok-Tossed seafood, Cranberry rubbed drumsticks and Raan-E-Shaandaar. As for the desserts, I ‘simply’ didn’t know what to skip! Everything from the aesthetically gorgeous Swiss rolls to macarons to mousses looked fantastic and tasted even better! The incredible dining experience concluded with a brief chat with Deepika Sinha, our host and head PR of Taj Santacruz.
Deepika and I conversed over a double shot of espresso, and she went on to tell me about everything that went into the making of Tiqri. Had time not being a constraint, and if I didn’t have to fly to another city in a few hours, I sure would have spent more time at Tiqri admiring its eternal grace. Something I plan to do on my next visit. If you love fine dining and quiet venues, as much as I do, then a Sunday brunch at Tiqri is a must-have! Bon appetite!