Tuesday, 16 October 2012

I & Monkey, Bangalore


Driving towards Indiranagar, I wondered which new restaurant to visit for dinner. 3 restaurants much heard about were in my radar, all of them were situated on the 12th Main road. Not giving much thought, we zeroed down on ‘I & Monkey’ only on the basis that it was the first we spotted. Though this decision was quick, what intrigued me was the name – ‘I & Monkey’. The d├ęcor looked elegant with a lot of emphasis and use of white but provided me no answer to why the name I & Monkey. Finally, spotted a monkey resting on the bar counter by the bottles.

You think this gave me an answer? No, it didn’t. Actually, it is the menu that helped me understand why the name. The management wants to create an environment where, I can awaken the monkey inside me by letting go of my corporate, social face or any other.

Menu
The monkey in me was excited to receive the menu cards. The beverage menu had the regular listing of alcoholic and non alcoholic beverages. The food menu was a mix bag of European, continental, Indian and coastal food from Kerala. The mains listing seemed to cater to mostly non-vegetarians with just a couple of options thrown in for the vegetarians.Surely a disappointment for the vegetarians.

The listing on the menu did bring back memories of the same dishes listed on the menu of many different pubs. The jig saw puzzle was solved, when I arrived to section ‘Best of Windsor’s Selection’. What struck me was - is I & Monkey run by the Windsor Pub management? Yes, it turned out to be true. 

What we ate
The monkey in me did wake up only to notice the special listing on a menu placard standing on the table. It decided to play with ‘Momo cheesy supreme’ for starters and appointed beer to team up with it. For the mains, it was ‘Vegetable nilgiri korma with a choice of either appams, sannas or parotha (all Indian main course dishes come with choice of accompaniment) and in non-vegetarian, while I initially preferred the good old Fish ‘N’ Chips, I was recommended Pan fried chicken breast by the restaurant staff.
Momo cheesy supreme was the first to arrive at our table. This was presented to us in a cane basket with a tomato and chilly based sauce. The momos were quite different from its more familiar counter-parts but nice to taste.  The notes of melted cheese, minced onion and carrot stuffed momos were well recognized. The chili sauce was not really spicy and had a tad bit tanginess coming from the tomato. The momos were not well shaped. Not having tried this before, my wildest guess for a reason would be due the melted cheese stuffing.
The vegetable nilgiri korma came plated with the spinach based korma in a bowl, 2 appams and shredded vegetable salad. The korma was really nice and it was savored in no time. The appams were light and crisp around the circumference and soft and fluffy in the center.
Pan fried chicken served was not cooked well and the chicken was raw in the middle. Though the sauce tasted very good, it seemed more like black pepper sauce than mushroom sauce. The mashed potatoes lacked freshness and were a tad bit too dry. The mixed vegetables plated with the chicken were pan fried too in the same sauce that was smothered on the chicken. It just seemed like an overdose of sauce in every bite. The dish could have been neutralized by plating boiled and buttered vegetables instead.
Better than Sex! No, I am not deviating. This is the name of a dessert served at I & Monkey. It’s pure chocolate pastry with a dollop of vanilla ice cream. This definitely was the best part of our meal. I’d highly recommend you to try this dessert when dining at I & Monkey.

Verdict
You may have noticed the use of the word ‘mix bag’ a couple of times in this restaurant write up. Now, I use it again to describe our experience on the service front. A couple of staff members attended to us. One declines the availability of WIFI, while, the other gets us access to it. One tries to sell us a beverage just like a credit card salesman would try to force upon a card, while, the other offers us a complimentary dessert. One says, “No more momo cheesy supreme available while the wait staff actually serves us a momo cheesy supreme.” At one point, food menu had to be asked for and we were given just one of it while 2 of us were dining and at another food were served hot and in a reasonable time.  The service otherwise was smooth but definitely has some pain points that need to be improved upon.

Drive your car right up to the restaurant door step and you’ll be first greeted with a valet parking car token. Yes, we have the restaurant share responsibility of the car park for its patrons.

An average mean for 2 here with a drink, a starter, 2 mains and a dessert to share will leave the wallet short of about Rs. 1500 – Rs.1700

In all, the monkey in me was not so thrilled with the experience. Oh Yes…. Before I sign off, the monkey sitting at the bar by the bottles was just a soft toy. (Just in case, you thought it was for real initially)

Address: #968, 12th Main, HAL 2nd Stage,  Indiranagar , Bangalore
Phone Number: 080 - 40923656, +91 8861986909


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