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Mumbai city seems to be upping its food game. There are a few restaurants that diners adore and are willing to spend relatively large sums of money for a meal there. We are not talking about restaurants housed in five star hotels but stand-alone joints that have really made a name for themselves. At one time Indigo was considered the best spot outside of a hotel. Recently, restaurants like The Table and even Ellipsis have gathered such a loyal fan following that they could price their dishes at any amount and their loyal customers would pay without so much as a blink of an eye.
If you look closely, all these restaurants have one thing in common which is that they consistently serve good food. It is a rare thing to have a bad meal at such restaurants and that is why they command the following that they have. The latest addition to this prestigious list of restaurants is Ballard Estate's newest entrant, The Clearing House.
Helmed by Chef Nitin Kulkarni and a team that has worked for many years under the Indigo brand, this restaurant is a wonderful addition to the restaurants in the city. The space is tucked away in one of the lanes in Ballard Estate and is divided into two sections – the first with a blue and beige themed decor with chequered flooring and a small bar. The second is a more dynamic space with booth like tables along with a longer bar at which you can sit and dine as well.
The menu is a mix of cuisines and dishes with a distinctive European and Asian touch given to them. Divided into small and large plates followed by desserts, there is enough to choose from. Dishes like their paprika spiced lamb tacos, rare beef tenderloin and the Provencal prawns and barley are some of the stars on their small plates menu. From the large plates the Thai chilli and ginger rubbed tenderloin is a beautiful choice, which is served with creamy mash potatoes and baby carrots. A word of caution, pace yourself well as the small plates are deceptively small and if you end up ordering a couple, you do not really need a main course.
The dessert menu has something for every taste bud but it is their cheesecake with lemon curd and Swiss meringue that is the absolute showstopper. It is a rather tall slice of the creamiest cheesecake in the city, topped with a beautiful layer of lemon curd followed by the meringue. While all the food here is enjoyable, this particular dessert is sinful.
The restaurant is barely a month old but you can tell how popular it is when you find it packed on a Monday night as well. If you are looking for a celebratory meal over Christmas or New Year, Chef Kulkarni and his team have something special in store.
Better known as the Tiny Taster, Roxanne is an internationally respected blogger and expert on the Mumbai food scene. She has hosted many events, including the Upper Crust Food & Wine Show and travels the world, sharing her knowledge and gaining more experience.