“Hamin asto, hamin asto, hamin asto” — If there is paradise on this earth, it is here, it is here, it is here. The great poet Amir Khusrau's words about Kashmir Valley still evoke those beautiful sentiments in everyone's hearts. Well, something similar is the feeling we share with our restaurant of the week, Taftoon Bar & Kitchen. From the Grand Trunk Road, Chittagong, Bihar, Punjab and much more, Tafoon opens your gastronomy senses like never before. If you thought you knew all about Indian regional cuisine, then dear patrons you might want to think again. Sitting in a restaurant that spreads across 2,800 sq. ft, the place is the very definition of ancient blends with modern. And, it is often rare to find a place that satisfies your soul with its ambience, drinks and food. Taftoon takes your taste goblets on an expedition that crosses various roads, fields, farms, traditional cooking methods, the intricate detailing of understanding the subject of gastronomy and so much more. Pick their menu and start your journey from the ancient Grand Trunk Road (South Asia's oldest and longest major road) from Afghanistan, moving to Pakistan, touring India through Punjab, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and also Bangladesh. The place also has a Daawat-E-Kashmir, the Kashmir Food Festival, which goes on till April 15, and would be a great way to start your experience here. Start your meal with Tabak Maaz — lamb ribs marinated in regional spices, simmered in milk and then shallow fried. Vegetarians can opt for their Nadru Ke Kebab (Lotus stem patties) — it is said if you haven't tried Nadru you haven't tried the authentic Kashmiri food at all. For mains try their Gushtara, a lamb specialty and Gogji Rajma (red kidney beans), enjoy it with Zafrani Taftoon (traditional bread). Cocktail lovers, this place has some of the best blends in town. In the end, treat your sweet tooth with Chount Ka Halwa and Shufta. To put it simply, Taftoon merges culture, traditions and cuisines to recreate a recipe that sets the modern-day seating with the same authenticity.
Food-o-meter: 4 stars
USP: From Chittagong to Kabul, Taftoon is the king of Indian regional cuisine in Mumbai
Highlights: Soya Chop, Bharwan Mushroom, Kashmiri Tea, Crispy Crunchy, Summer Cooler, Dessert Platter
Rs 2500 for two (without liquor)
Average Cost: Approx. Rs 1000-1500 (per person)
Verdict: From ancient Grand Trunk Road from Afghanistan, Pakistan, to India touring through Punjab, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Bangladesh, this food exploration journey will introduce you to a new culinary world
Location: Bandra Kurla Complex, Bandra East Naman center, opp. Dena bank, G Block BKC, Mumbai – 400051