Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Advice For Gorelick, Or "What Dishes Would I Suggest For Dinner At Mango Grove?"

Jackfruit curry at Mango Grove
I love getting advice about what to order in a restaurant -- even if they don't turn out to be my favorite dishes.

I don't eat out that often.  Certainly not as often as people seem to think from the blog.  So I never want to settle for boring standards at a restaurant, and I'm always up for advice about corners of the menu that hold something delicious, adventurous or just unique.

The Sun's Richard Gorelick wrote a positive review of Mango Grove, but he chided the staff for not giving him more advice.  I empathize.  I've felt frustrated when I couldn't get advice in Chinese restaurants.  So what's my advice about Mango Grove?

Pick all over the menus.  That's plural.  Mango Grove reopened with two menus, one vegetarian using Mango Grove's name and one non-veg using the Mirchi Wok name from the sibling restaurant that was next door to the old location.  Take four people.  Order a bunch of food:
  • Order a dosa.  These are the plate-sized crepes filled with spiced mashed potatoes and vegetables.  First visit:  Order regular masala dosa.  Second visit:  Order a bit more exotic, the Mango Grove Special Masala Dosa.
  • Build basics.  Gorelick is right to applaud the well-tempered curries.  These are vegetarian dishes cooked with great skill.  First visit: Baighan bartha is mashed eggplant, which I swear is smokier and more flavorful.  Second visit:  Dal makhani is lentils and beans.  Delicious, rich with flavor.
  • Add a meat if that's your thing.  First visit: Chicken tikki masala, cooked in the tandoor drill and served with a tomato-based sauce.  Next time:  Gun-powder roast chicken, our new find with a spicy complex sauce.  It's a flavor that I could never re-create.
  • Go unusual.  First visit: Nargissi aloo -- potatoes hollowed out and then stuffed back with vegetables and cheese simmered in the makhani sauce.  Second visit:  Jackfruit curry.  This was a special, but it's on the menu now.  Immature fruit, cooked down in a curry.  It's a hint of sweetness.  Sort of a meat texture, but it's a real texture, not fake chicken made form soy.  
My suggestions leave out so many other reasons to try Mango Grove -- the samosa chaat appetizers, the oothappam, the Chinese-Indian dishes, the lamb.  But you need to start somewhere.  Click here for all my posts about Mango Grove.

Any restaurants where you would suggest a certain table of food?  I would love to restart the Trolling posts -- three paragraphs and a cell phone photo.  Email me if you'd like to try.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

On my first trip to Mango Grove I received great advice from the staff. I even had a man that seemed like the owner come over and talk to me about their food, old location, and current location.

I had an amazing first experience. I absolutely loved the paneer dosai.