For the first visit, a Wine Festival, the waiters should have been trained in discussing the wines and not just in how to pour the stuff. We tasted the local Vallonne cabs, merlots, chenin blanc and suavignon blanc. Of the four, the merlot 2009 was the most drinkable, luscious full fruit with a slight astringency. Lovely for sipping, but even better with food. We bought a case and when we got it home, we realized that the merlot purchased were 2011, NOT 2009. If I didn't think it was simple lack of training on the part of the serving staff, I would have returned them. You never taste one year and purchase another. That's just totally and completely wrong.
The place was packed with foreigners, all slurping down copious amounts of wine and sampling the menu. We started with duck momos (okay) that came with a decent dipping sauce, then branched out to try the crispy prawn tempura and squid rings, both light, and tasted of seafood, not batter. The dipping sauce that came with the prawns had a citrus base and matched well with the prawns. The squid was just slightly overcooked, but still very tasty.
We also had the duck salad. Not memorable.
This past Saturday, we visited a second time, with Will in tow. When I bring him, with his voracious appetite, we can easily order a number of plates with me sampling and him finishing them all off. Good tactic. :-) I remembered to take photos this time.
|White Sangria at Malaka Spice, Pune - YUM!|
We started with the Bulgogi, a Korean meat preparation that is usually folded into fresh lettuce cups like a burrito or wrap. The thinly sliced mutton was grisly, dry and powdery. While the spice level was perfect for me, it came with no lettuce and was pretty much inedible with all the gristle.
Second came the duck momos. Will wasn't thrilled with them, and my tastebuds were still smarting from the bulgogi sampling. They tasted off in flavor, even with the dipping sauce. Made me wonder how long they'd been sitting in the kitchen. They were steamed perfectly, though.
|Duck Momos at Malaka Spice, Pune|
|Prawn Crispura at Malaka Spice, Pune|
Overall, I may give Malaka Spice another try, but with so many decent restaurants here in Pune, why should I? Let me know if I've missed a signature dish - that could convince me to try them again!