Bangalore restaurant reviews Jayanagar

Bistro Grill Express

Tuesday, May 25, 2010Me! In words

I grew up in the Gulf when my taste buds had not yet evolved enough to relish good Arabic food. I regret that even today. I was a very bad eater as a child and now even mom has a hard time believing I have a website that reviews restaurants. Bangalore's restaurants has its newest addition in the form of the Bistro Grill Express. For now, this a counter serving Arabic food at the Bangalore Central Mall in Jayanagar 9th Block.

Being in Jayanagar, we were yet to visit this mall and we decided to do so at prime time on a Saturday evening. Surprisingly we found parking space. More surprising was the fact that this was the first mall where I did not need to depend on the crowd to propel me around. There was enough of walking space and we could actually window shop. Shopping done, we headed for the food court and zeroed in on the Bistro Grill counter. The menu was enticing.

Hummus with Kuboos

The mettle of any Arabic restaurant is how they make their Hummus (at least I think so). And so we ordered a Hummus with Kuboos. Most restaurants here would refer to the kuboos as pita bread. Well they wouldn't really be wrong. Its just that hummus with kuboos is a Lebanese specialty and you might as well get it right. The hummus served was really generous in quantity. Dunked in olive oil as it should be and had a few seedless green olives. And the kuboos served was warm and made for a great accompaniment. Test passed!!

Sudhakar's cousin Reshma was with us that day and she decided to have the Chicken Shawarma. This restaurant has a display counter of its prize dishes and almost anyone visiting the place will have to battle the urge to swipe one tray and run away with it. Anyways, the rotisserie in the background was additional invitation. This shawarma was quite a handful literally, much bigger that what popular shawarma places like Kebab Magic offer. The wrap was well stuffed with lots of chicken. This was soft and well cooked and had absorbed well the grilled onion and tomato placed on top of the rotisserie for flavoring. It came along with the garlic mayonnaise on the side as well as a pickled chilli and some veggies. A satisfied tummy guaranteed.

The shawarma

The Sheesh Tawook / Taouk

The Sheesh Tawook/Taouk was next. This dish is of Turkish origin, with it also being found in Lebanese, Syrian and Iraqi cuisines. These cubes of chicken were marinated in yogurt, chilli, tomato and grilled to soft perfection. Trying to stick to original recipe, this sheesh tawook was served with a slightly watered down version of garlic toum or a chutney of sorts. It also came with a mint variation of the chutney which is not very commonly served in Arab cities and a chilli based sauce. The shredded veggies were also welcome. This was also quite a plateful.

The Grilled Lebanese Chicken was another order. Chicken fillet marinated in lemon juice, chilli, garlic, pepper and some more spices and grilled. This was served with the same accompaniments as the Sheesh tawook. The chicken was well seasoned and grilled. I personally found it slightly repetitive since the Sheesh tawook was like a bite sized version of the same. But then that is because of the combination of dishes we ordered and not because the food was bad.
Grilled Lebanese Chicken

We also had a round of spinach fatayers. I had a Palestinian baby-sitter when I was growing up and spinach fatayers were her specialty. These are meant to be soft triangular pockets filled, among many other stuffings, with spinach. Her pastry, I remember used to be soft. One bite into it and there would be no reason for any child not to like their greens. Now coming back to these fatayers. While the spinach stuffing was done well, I found the pastry to be a little chewy and thick. A thinner covering would have been perfect. And to wash it all down, we had an interesting lemon juice that was mixed with a load of mint to give it a greenish color. Not something that really sat well with me, but Sudhakar and Reshma liked it.

Spinach Fatayers

The very interesting lemon juice

The menu is really interesting at this place and I would love to try more such as the Chicken Kebbeh, the Samak Harra, the kabsa, zattar with cheese and the moutabbel. And since they have home delivery I am bound to have all of this soon. The bill came to around Rs 625 which for three people is good. The quantities are good and for a food court restaurant, I really liked their neat style of presentation.

Address: Food Stop, Bangalore Central - 2, Mantri Junction, Near Ragigudda Temple, Jayanagar 9th Block , Bangalore - 560069
Phone: 42138463
Cuisine: Arabic
Cards Accepted: Yes
Parking: The mall parking

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