For a while now I’ve been looking for places to satisfy my Punjabi cravings and sadly Bangalore has never been able to bring that authenticity to the restaurant tables here. Either the butter chicken ends up being too sweet or the paneer is grilled a bit too much. So it gave me so much happiness when I found out that Delhi and Bombay’s favourite Punjabi restaurant was coming to my home city.
I did attend the launch party a couple of months ago but honestly I never like to give my opinion about a place based on that. Also, I barely ate that day so hence you see this review published four months after it opened it’s doors to the public. Over these months, I’m sure there have been a lot of changes taken into account and I’m not just going to say that I had one of the best experiences there because I’m a big fan of all Massive Restaurants babies but I thoroughly enjoyed my meal even though I feel I ate a little too much.
Punjabis take their food very seriously. They love to feed you and you end up eating much more than your stomach can even handle. The culinary philosophy adopted at Made in Punjab is based on offering a balance between favourites as well as cuisine from the Pind, showcasing dishes from the dining tables of Punjab, mother’s recipes and highway dhaba specialities, preserving original, traditional flavours of each dish on offer, while seamlessly amalgamating the spirit of celebration of its people. The idea being of reconnecting with our roots, reminiscent of the rustic-earthy experience coupled with a quirky take on traditional classics, for the guests to enjoy a first-hand experience in true Punjabi style & giving a peek into this celebratory culture.
The menu comprises of dishes from the Princely State, developed after in depth research and study of the region’s culinary past, focusing on the provinces surrounding the Five Rivers. The inspiration of the menu lies in tracing the cultural lineage of the region, showcasing the culinary strength of gourmet cities like Amritsar, Lahore, Peshawar and Baluchistan among other notable regions unified under the leadership of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, which were not just a melting pot of different cultures and traditions, but also are renowned for their distinguished gastronomic history.
What really got me impressed was the fact that they have not let molecular gastronomy get in the way of changing the character of traditional dishes even though they have brought about a contemporary twist in them.
Started off the afternoon with one of their popular cocktails that is served cold in a lassi glass- Jatt Risky after Whisky. I can tell you that it is not as scary as it reads but can get risky after one too many. A concoction of whisky sour, beaten eggs,cinnamon snd citrus fruits, it’s a real delight!
You can’t not begin a Punjabi meal without some food from the streets. Yes I’m talking about their Popeye Paaji Ki Chaat that has become such a hit. In memory of the great Popeye, they have created a chatpata chaat of crispy fried spinach leaves topped with yoghurt, mint & imli chutney.
All you hard core meat eaters do not miss out on the Legacy Tandoori Champ that has been marinated with MIP’s special spices. It is braised to give that succulent flavour and then roasted in the tandoor bringing out it’s heaty side. Tender and falling off the bone, you will love it!!.
For vegetarians, dont be disappointed. There’s the Paneer Barrel Tikka – soft, bits of paneer taking the shape of a barrel, rolled into a flavorful masala with a slightly sweet stuffing and then roasted which makes all the difference.
Also, the Jau Mushroom Chakli is a great way of eating mushrooms. Round cutlets stuffed with cheese, sabudana and minced mushrooms served with sarso garlic chutney. The only issue I had with this dish was I felt the sabudana should have been less in quantity as compared to the mushrooms.
For main course, the try the Maa Ke daal that has been cooked for hours on a low flame along with their signature Luxury Butter Chicken- a dish loaded with butter,cream and cashews. Honestly, the best have eaten in the city till now.
Even after a heavy, rich meal you’ve got to end it in true Bhangra style with mithais. Made in Punjab offers some truly inspiring innovative desserts like the Ghoushalla Di Kulfi which was delectable as it’s name. Creamy, rich and had the right amount of sweetness. Loved the addition of rose syrup to the dish.
Also if you’re nuts about dates like me, then the Ras Dates Malai will get you all excited. A stuffing of ground dates and khoya sandwiched in between the rasmalai, it had a great balance of flavours. Sinful but thankfully not overly sweet!
For me, food has to go beyond the first bite. The textures and flavours creating something to be remembered for a lifetime and that’s exactly what Made In Punjab gave me thanks to the ‘the Prince of Indian cuisine’, Zorawar Kalra.
If you’re looking for simple yet classy Punjabi fare that wont burn a hole in your pocket ,then I think you’ve come to the right place. Very often considered as the poor man’s Masala Library, I fail to agree with this statement as it as it’s own unique take to things that gives it all the attention it deserves.
Made In Punjab
Address: Level 2, UB City, Vittal Mallya Road, Bangalore
Price: Rs 2500 for two
(The author was invited to review the restaurant. However, the views of the author remain unbiased and are solely her own.)