Pandora Gastronomy and Bar – A Review

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Pandora Gastronomy and Bar is a very interesting new watering hole in Yerawda, Pune. With a slew of theatrical food and drinks, it’s a great place to hang out and party. The architecture too is great, going very well with the modern gastronomy. The music can be a tad loud if you plan have a quiet evening or romantic date, though.  I was invited for a food tasting and I would like to thank both Pandora Gastronomy and Bar as well as Food Prowl for the great time.

DRINKS

We were served quite a few specialty cocktails. My favourite among them being the Elder Fashioned, a bourbon whisky based cocktail with elder flower and thyme which arrived smoking from the use of liquid nitrogen. It was smooth, flavourful and a very easy drinking cocktail.

TUNA BHEL

An interesting concept, bhel with few chucks of tuna topped with sour cream and balsamic. Unfortunately the green chilly was too strong and overpowered most of the flavour. Tamarind marinated tuna itself tasted good but didn’t really gel with the bhel. Of course, nitrous oxide pouring out from under the dish from a separate container tried to add a bit of drama.

SOUPS

Murgh Dhakhni Shorba
Murgh Dhakhni Shorba
Canton Spiced Broth
Canton Spiced Broth

The soups were fantastic. The Spiced Canton Broth and Murgh Dhakhni Shorba were both amazing. Balanced flavours, great ingredients and really heartwarming. Definite wins.

SALADS

Som Tam Salad
Som Tam Salad
Arugula Candied Walnut Salad
Arugula Candied Walnut Salad

Som Tam Chicken Salad was a refreshing and tangy Thai salad with chicken satay on the side. Really good. The Arugula and Candied Walnut Salad was nice too but the candied walnuts were too sweet and too hard but that should be easily fixable.

STARTERS

Chicken Cafreal was quite bland and lacked taste. Definitely needs a rethink. But the chicken was beautifully cooked, very tender.

Honey Chilly Lotus Roots – Unfortunately though it tasted quite good, the lotus root pieces were rock hard and all stuck together. Difficult to eat.

Hot Bean Prawn Rock looked massively inviting and you couldn’t wait to dig in. Huge tiger prawns stacked on top of each other in a dark and delicious looking hot bean sauce. But the batter was too thick and you just couldn’t taste the prawns, which should have been the hero of the dish. It was tasty but the batter needs to be much thinner.

MAINS

After the mixed bag of starters, the mains really pulled back some good points.

Dum ka Murgh
Nalli Niharri
Nalli Niharri

The Dum Ka Murgh was mild, creamy, saffroney curry with a hint of sweetness. The Nalli Nihari was spot on, great flavour and rich. The quantity and quality of meat was superb with the meat literally falling of the bone. The Kalonji Naan and Khamiri Roti were exceptional too, different and really tasty.

Sri Lankan Curry
Sri Lankan Curry

The Sri Lankan Curry was a hit. Creamy coconut milk based curry with lots of vegetables and chicken. I personally didn’t love the pair up with Coconut and Cabbage Rice though I liked both elements individually. I’m probably too much of a simple steamed “unpolished rice” kinda’ guy.

Saffron Prawn Risotto
Saffron Prawn Risotto

Saffron and Prawn Risotto was a another gem. Creamy delicate saffroney sauce with perfect al dente rice. Topped with succulent prawns and some great quality cheese. The combination of all elements together was just fantastic. Really superb dish.

DESSERTS

Hazelnut Salted Caramel Moelleux
Hazelnut Salted Caramel Moelleux

The desserts hit the spot on a different level. The Hazelnut and Salted Caramel Moelleux was just a beautiful and modern dessert. It was apparently very tasty too, as it literally got over within minutes and never reached me!

Gajar Halwa Boreks
Gajar Halwa Boreks

The Gajar Halwa Boreks was quite an innovative way to use gajar halwa and was very tasty. All the elements and sauce resulted in a great flavour spectrum.

Rose Phirni Parfait
Rose Phirni Parfait
Rose Phirni Parfait
Rose Phirni Parfait

The Rose Phirni Parfait was another fantastic dish. The first real good use of liquid nitrogen to add a different texture and experience to a traditional dish. The frozen rose petals, spewing out nitrogen steam, along with the rose pearls added a great texture and taste to the already tasty phirni. I really liked this dessert.

Chocolate Dome was a chocolate explosion for the die hard chocolate-o-maniac. Quite a dramatic as well as delicious dessert. The Paan Macaroons were a fitting end to the meal. Really amazing paan flavoured Macaroons dipped in liquid nitrogen which were supposed to be eaten as soon as they come out. It was cold, refreshing and with smoke pouring out of your mouth as you bite into it. It’s like ‘Paan Hookah’ without the “smoking kills” warning.

Overall, I had fun at Pandora Gastronomy and Bar. Lot’s of interesting drinks, food and desserts to try. Some of the dishes do need some work but if you choose well it could be one hell of a night out. My issue with a lot of places that claim to serve “Molecular Gastronomy” is that all they do is use the unnecessary histrionics of smoking liquid nitrogen just to add some theatre to  everyday or average dishes. No real innovation takes place. That is partly true for Pandora, but a couple of dishes help diffuse the notion. The food is not perfect but is quite an unique and fun experience for most people and should definitely be tried once.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Powered by WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: