Storm the steel-and-glass exterior of Godrej BKC and you’ll arrive in what feels like a Goan aunty's home. At O Pedro, a highly-anticipated new restaurant by the Bombay Canteen team, glass chandeliers that would otherwise be dismissed as tacky are tinged with romantic nostalgia, potted plants hang by windows, sepia family photographs line the bar and Fado fills the air.
While we mourn the absence of feni on the drinks menu, there's plenty of rum to keep beach bums happy. Home-brews and infusions line the top of the bar in fat, colourful jars and liven up our Vasco Sour, a playful reinvention that swaps Pisco for whiskey and tops the whole thing with Goan toddy vinegar shrub and a frothy head of egg-white. Mr. Fernandez’s Fancy Drink, a very grown up drink indeed, pairs kokum infused rum and a tincture of salt with Paul John whiskey. Pro tip: ask Bartender Joseph for a shot of cherry brandy, a heady liqueur with notes of almond and Christmas-come-early.
Soak It Up
If there is ever a lesson in not judging a dish by its name, it would be Aunty Castro’s Fish Mousse. More buttery pate than fishy mousse, here spicy notes of ginger work well against the brininess of fish, especially when piled generously onto thin melba toasts. Also dip into house-made buffalo milk cheese and roasted chile peppers, where specks of creamy-white gleam against a flaming red and forest-green bed: the spectrum of flavours covered by this tiny dish is staggering. Less successful is Bangda parra, served with a heavy hand of onion and coriander; the pickled mackerel seems almost like an afterthought.
Home-brews and infusions line the top of the bar in fat, colourful jars and liven up our Vasco Sour, a playful reinvention that swaps Pisco for whiskey and tops the whole thing with Goan toddy vinegar shrub and a frothy head of egg-white.
If you’re anything like us, you’re going to want to load up on the carbs: say hello to house-baked sourdough poee with an assortment of butters, including chorizo, sharp and pungent.
Tongue In Cheek
One of the most exciting discoveries on the menu is veal tongue ‘prosciutto’, cured and slivered, peppered with pickled cucumber and tendli, served with a cloud of garlic-mustard aioli. Aunty Braganza’s Rissois, a chic interpretation of the Goan classic, is perfectly fried but ultimately let down by less-than-fresh crab filling. Smoked pork ribs vindaloo are a marvel — tender and melting at the lightest touch. We only wish the flavours of the pork weren’t pitted against the strong spices of a vindaloo.
Portuguese Seafood Cataplana is the star of our meal, a deeply flavourful shellfish broth with tomatoes and the freshest seafood in town — red snapper, squid, crab and prawn. Our only gripe? It doesn’t come in cataplana, the copper dish that gives this delightful stew its name. If you’re looking for comfort, duck feijoada, slow cooked duck with pink Goan beans, is a pleasant, safe choice.
Dessert is Portuguese doughnuts and a chocolate and olive oil mousse. While the mousse is airy, rich and just the right amount of sophisticated, it’s the doughnuts we’re still thinking about. Crisp, fluffy and airy all at the same time, they’re served with three sauces including toffee, lemon and salted caramel. However, as with the finest things in life, they’re best enjoyed unadorned.
Getting there: G Block, Godrej BKC, Bandra Kurla Complex, a meal for two with drinks costs approximately Rs. 2,600.
This story was contributed by Anisha Rachel Oommen, a food journalist and co-founder of The Goya Journal, a digital publication focused on culinary storytelling.
bpb reviews anonymously and pays for its own meals.
Sponsored: Drink responsibly and take an Uber back home after your visit to O Pedro.
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