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The original and the best Gajalee is still the one in Vile Parle. It is meant for locals (a broad definition that covers everyone from SachinTendulkar to Lata Mangeshkar to you and me) and no attempt is made to entice foreign tourists. Though the owners, who live above the restaurant, are from Mangalore, they specialise in cooking the sea food of the Maharashtra coast though, inevitably, the Mangalore influences do creep in. That said, the cuisine is authentic, with attention being paid to both fresh seafood which is flown in daily and to freshly ground masalas made to traditional recipes.
Mumbai has to be one of the greatest cities considering gastronomy. The city itself is thriving with all sorts of cultures and their food but nothing, I mean nothing, comes close to the exquisite world of regional cuisine. If it’s the first thing you have to do in the city, get your hands on some traditional Maharashtrian fare. Its everything Mumbai is, colorful and vivacious. If you ask your cab driver or your neighbor where to go for awesome Maharashtrian meal, they will point you towards ‘Gajalee’. Out of all the outlets in Mumbai opt for the one at Kadamgiri Complex in Vile Parle East. The food is authentic here with a touch of Mangalorean seeping in courtesy to the Mangalorean owners. Locals flock to Gajalee whenever they feel like having fried bombil, their most famous dish.
Gajalee is popular all over the city for its authentic Maharashtrian food. An abundance of seafood is available on the menu, which you will find to be very extensive and satisfying. Fresh seafood is flown daily and freshly ground masalas are used to add authenticity to the food. There are several North Indian dishes on the menu as well but stick to traditional Maharashtrian food. No alcohol is served at Gajalee, have a glass of solkadi instead. As first course tuck into, spicy prawns sukha, basa koshimbir, baby lobster tikka, stuffed pomfret, tandoori crab, oyster masala dry, clams butter pepper garlic and pudina fish tikka. To enjoy the curries break a piece of ghavne or paratha. Tuck into, mutton bhakri, pomfret tikka masala, prawns ambat tikhat, crab green chilly sauce, pomfret curry, red snapper curry, squid masala and baby lobster curry.
They even do small combo meals like pomfret lunch box or chicken lunch box for those who are short on time. For something sweet to round off your meal opt between, caramel custard, kulfi or your choice of pastry. One has to admit Gajalee is the best when it comes to regional seafood and deserves every bit of its accolade. Another great touch we like is that live crustaceans are bought to your table for you to choose your protein. A theatrical display but wonderful nonetheless. Interiors of Gajalee are simple yet comfortable. The room flows into several nooks so if you would like a bit of privacy choose a corner table. Gajalee is totally value for money, bookmark it.