It was for the second time that I was visiting the White Owl Brewery in Lower Parel, this time to check out the menu curated by their new Chef Dinesh Bherwani. I wouldn’t rate my last food experience at the brewery top notch and hence I was filled with some trepidation during this visit as well.
The brews at White Owl had excelled the last time and they matched upto their name this time around as well, but what delighted me was that the complete menu (barring a few popular dishes) had been revamped. Dinesh was an enthusiastic host and quickly walked me through his entire menu and the concept behind it all.
Starting his journey through Sierra Leone, Switzerland, USA and finally ending up in India, I was happy to see that his food incorporates elements and techniques from each of the places he has stayed in the past. His passion and craziness create a fun filled equation in the food that is presented on your table for sure.
This was further validated when he served us our first dishes of the evening which were House Beer Braised Chicken tostada (Rs.425/-) and the must try samplers of Gourmet Popcorn! Yes, you read it right – Popcorn; the chef has taken this banal snack and added some very interesting elements to each of the variations making the simple snack stand out as
a very potent contender to bar snacks all around. Do try their Parmesan and chives flavoured popcorn for its subtle cheesy herbaceous flavour, or their Chilly flavoured one where the tabasco style chilly kick hits at the tail end of each bite while the buttery start balances of the tail end spice in each bite. The stand out for me
however is most definitely the Bombay style popcorn which is the chef´s version of Bhel Puri. He has used the elements of bhelpuri like tomato, onions, peanuts, chutneys and tossed them with butter and used them with the popcorn is such a way that the crunchy popcorns take a completely new meaning under this beautiful creation. Definitely a must try if you are down there for a couple of drinks. Pair it happily with their brews like Halcyon, Diablo or Paulina.
The Tostadas were also nice with the subtle hint of the caramel beer. It was a little bit of a clumsy bite though, as the salsa kept falling through my fingers as I tried to pop in the tostada. Another stand out starter was the Jerk Chicken Wings (Rs. 375) where the chef has created his own dry jerk spice rub which is extremely aromatic and reminded me of the wings I would eat in the Caribbean. The Black Bean and Spinach Empanada (Rs.325) was a bit of a dampener as the dough was a bit heavy and undercooked.
However the next dishes – Barbecue Chicken Waffle burger (Rs.475) and Grilled German Bratswurst (Rs.645) recaptured the lost glory. Chicken fillet slammed between two slices of savoury cornmeal waffles served with a fried egg and a mild sweet barbecue sauce was surely an interesting take on both waffles and a burger and I just couldn’t put the burger down. I kept wishing that they had added bacon to this beautiful burger as well. The brats were of the readymade kind but not bad, what really made the dish stand out was the bed of grilled apples and vegetables on which it was served, which worked well as an accompaniment and paired well with the Diablo.
I also tried a Red Curry Bowl (Rs.375) which is the chefs own creation, his take on Khow Suey. Though the dish is very well conceptualized, I didn’t relish it as much as I did the other items.
The final course of Desserts was indeed our Grand Finale as both the desserts we tried that day were simply mind blowing. The Craft Beer Popsicle (Rs.195) comes in a jar with some butter cookie crumble at the bottom. It’s like licking a beer lolly with cookie crunch, the flavours are diverse and beer lovers will surely dig it up. The Chocolate Chilly Lollypop is a mind blowing interpretation of a chocolate lolly where the chef covers it up with Pop Rocks that explode in your mouth with each bite and the chilly and chocolate combination adds to the explosive taste quotient.
White Owl has surely taken a positive step towards creating a menu which stands on it own and complements its craft beers magnificently. We hope this passion stays alive and we get to see new and interesting combinations from Chef Dinesh´s stables in times to come. Till then….Salud!
Ratings (Out of 5)
Food: 4.0 | Ambience: 4.0 | Service: 4.0 | Overall: 4.0
Meal for Two: Rs. 1800 | Credit Cards: Yes | Alcohol: Yes | Timings: 12 pm to 1.30 am | Wheelchair Access: Yes | Home Delivery: No
Address: One Indiabulls Center, Tower 2 Lobby, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel West, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400013| Phone: 022 2421 0231
Disclaimer: This review was done on an invitation from the restaurant. Due judgment and care has been applied by the author to remain objective and unbiased in the review, but readers need to consider this review keeping this fact in mind.