Szechwan Court - Restaurant Review  

Posted by Aayush Sharma in , , ,

8:13PM, Bangalore

Chad treated Uma and me to some delicious Chinese cuisine at Szechwan Court at The Oberoi, MG Road. Here is a quick review of the place.

Decor and ambiance - 2/5

I associate Chinese restaurants with being exotic and unfortunately, Szechwan Court really disappoints in this aspect. It has a very minimalist decor, more suitable for a contemporary restaurant. Also, I personally prefer a slightly dark and cosy setting and found the restaurant very bright lit. The music is typical instrumental Chinese restaurant music, which is forgettable.

Service - 3.5/5

The waiters were warm and friendly but I thought they could have run a tighter ship. Particularly when they brought us our appetizers before the cocktails.

Beverages - 2.5/5

Surprisingly, the cocktails were very average and I'll go as far as to say that I've had better at rock pubs in Bangalore, which are traditionally beer havens. My order of a dirty martini turned out to be a dry martini, which was what it said on the menu. However, being a 5 star hotel, they should've made me a dirty martini or at the very least informed me of its unavailability. Uma found her Mojito and MaiTai to be quite well made. Chad stuck with Tiger beer and I joined him after the martini.

Food - 4.75/5

All faults aside, the food at Szechwan Court is heavenly! By far the most delicious Chinese I have ever sampled. We started with soft-shell crabs, a fried corn dish, a chicken with dry chillies and scallions and some vegetarian wantons. All of these were very well done. So much so that we ordered another round of the soft-shell crabs since they were outstanding!

Main course consisted of a baby corn dish for Uma while Chad and I split some tenderloin in black pepper sauce and prawns in XO sauce along with some braised noodles. The tenderloin was nearly perfect. The prawns were good but overshadowed by the tenderloin and the crabs.

We ended our wonderful meal with an almond and fig tart and a sticky chocolate pudding with ice-cream, both of which were again very well done.

One point to note is that presentation of the food was very simple, unlike say, Toscanos.

One last gripe we had was that we were informed that we would have to finish our drinks by 11:30PM after which they would have to clear them away. Honestly!

Overall, the food was out of this world and every Chinese food-lover should definitely try this place. It is super expensive but I didn't care!

IPL Madness  

Posted by Aayush Sharma

10:43AM, Bangalore

Will Pakistan's politicians and cricket stars please shut the hell up? You are a bunch of hypocritical nutters who don't deserve a chance to even set foot in our country, let alone play in the IPL. I am really happy that no Pakistani players were picked by any team this year and I hope that Pakistan boycotts the IPL permanently.

What is the deal with "we will pay you back in the same coin"? You don't have anything that we need so there is no chance of any payback. What are you going to do? Not allow Indian players in your "virtual" cricket league? Oh right, I forgot. You'll "pay" us back by sending more terrorists, from your PTL.


Chocolate Martini Recipe  

Posted by Aayush Sharma

10:11AM, Bangalore

I made some delicious chocolate martinis yesterday and thought I'll document the process. The ingredients you will need are:

1. 60 ml Absolut/Belvedere vodka
2. 45 ml Kahlua liquer
3. 15 ml Myers Jamaican rum
4. 15 ml instant coffee concoction
5. 2 tbsp Baskin Robbins chocolate ice-cream, melted
6. Hershey's Chocolate Syrup for decoration
7. Lots of ice
8. A blender

All these ingredients are easily available in Bangalore.

The process is as follows:

1. Add a few ice-cubes to the blender and churn a couple of times to create a soft, almost powdery base.
2. Drop in the other ingredients. Add in lesser Kahlua and coffee concoction if you prefer a more chocolatey taste.
3. Churn for 5-10 seconds.
4. Line your chosen glasses with chocolate syrup.

5. Pour in the drink and serve!

A couple of variations including rimming the glass with powdered sugar and adding a melted bar of chocolate to the mix to thicken it further. I haven't tried these yet but I'm sure they are delicious. The splash of rum is added only to add a little flavor and can be left out if you don't like the taste of rum.

That's it!

Solar Eclipse Silliness  

Posted by Aayush Sharma

8:56PM, Bangalore

So, the annular eclipse that happened recently created hysteria in India. Funny, people have such strong yet archaic beliefs in this country. They'll get up really early and take a shower and have a bite to eat since you cannot do that during the eclipse. They also don't travel during the phenomenon so people either reach early or late for their appointments.

Best part - schools and even some offices give the day off to people to shield them from the eclipse! Children are encouraged to stay indoors and not venture outside. What kind of a day off is that?!

Scientists had to eat biscuits at a public gathering to dispel fears about consumption of food during the eclipse. I'd like to witness the next eclipse to see how much of an effect that had. I'm guessing not too much.

I know we have a great and very old culture but I wish we'd move forward from silly beliefs and embrace some common sense as well.