Sunday, April 6, 2014

Launch of the new burger McRoyale at McDonalds, Mumbai.

Food memories are the best memories. The best of my childhood memories involve playing hide and seek, lock and key, and pakda pakdi with my friends and coming back home to usually a glass of milk shake before dinner. Other prominent memories include me fighting with my brothers to get a chance to play Mario on my Nintendo video game during vacations, while munching on cheese crackers and little 200 ml tetra packs of Chocolate/Banana/Strawberry Milk that Mom brought from her trips to Dubai and Sharjah. Back then, little pleasures mattered the most, much like enjoying and chilling with a madh (honey) wala gola, which was nothing but shaved ice on a stick that was dipped in flavored syrups and then swirled in faux honey which was actually something like sugar in an almost soft ball stage, which solidified on the ice so we could actually chew it off. Wow, I feel old.

Then arrived the rage that was McDonalds, and Ronald, the man in a Yellow boiler Suit with a white face and Red hair was too adorable to make clowns appear freaky to me anymore (I was so scared of clowns as a child). Everyone wanted to go to McDonalds and look at the super awesome wallpapers of Grimace, Hamburglar and Birdie, and get a Happy Meal or two so they could update their collection. I remember visiting McDonalds for the first time with Mom and the younger brother, and I was in love. Mom made sure that we earned a meal at McDonalds, much like the precious (fixed) time to play video games or to indulge in our favorite meals. Nothing came free.

Time went by, but the memory stayed. I dreamed of conquering the Maharaja Mac one day, and I finally did, when I was 16. The McDonalds at Vile Parle Station, near my college (Mithibai) was a popular bunking destination as it opened up at 0800 hrs and had a jukebox. I remember spending days on end at our favorite spot, playing truth and dare with friends, listening to music and being able to recite the entire menu of McDonalds at one go. Along with special discounts and toys of the month. Wish I paid more attention to studies (or not).

I tend to stretch topics out and explain them over and over again when they mean something to me. I guess what I am trying to say is, even when we're all grown up, and we spend time dining at gourmet restaurants, there is very little that is as comforting as Burger and Fries. If you've ever noticed, very little has ever been struck off the menu at McDonalds. People love what they provide - a quick and affordable meal. 

The McRoyale Paneer/Chicken was launched two weeks ago after a lot of testing, and a bunch of bloggers got to know exactly how. From conceptualizing a Burger to providing the ultimate experience with the perfect bread, patty and vegetables, Chef Swarup Solgaonkar has had to spend a lot of time in his test kitchen coming up with a great burger experience. The Mc Royale Chicken is a big burger, priced at Rs. 140, that consists of two chicken patties, two slices of chicken salami, garden fresh salad, and a cornmeal dusted bun. The McPaneer Royale is priced at Rs. 130, that consists the same items, but has a different shape and of course, a Paneer Steak coated with Mediterranean spices in place of the meat. 

It was great to know how passionate everyone from the McDonalds team was about their new product. A fun challenge followed and we all got to interpret our styles of what is an ultimate burger eating experience. For some it was pretty, but for some it meant serious flavor packed awesomeness. I'd leave it up to you guys to judge how the burger was, but this was one of those rare times where I favoured the Vegetarian version more than its Non Veg counterpart (It was too yummy for me to be partial towards the meat).Wishing everyone over at McDonalds all the best and here is a confession from me - I will be a McDonalds fan girl for life! (even if that means training harder at the gym)

Which is your favorite burger from McDonalds? Have you tried the McRoyale burgers yet? What is your verdict? I'd love to know! 

Photo Credits: Rashi Arora

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Food Review: Smoke House Deli, Bandra Kurla Complex.

Picture Courtesy : Smoke House Deli

Pharrell William's Happy is doing the rounds almost everywhere on the internet. Its great, everyone is uploading their version of the Happy Song on youtube, so much so that someone has actually uploaded a parody video called 'Crappy'. Crappy makes them Happy. Well, whatever floats their boat!

Happiness for me is simple things. Food, Love, and Laughter. Smoke House Deli has consistently managed to maintain the number 1 spot in all 3 departments for me. It also happens to be my most visited place for a Date night, other than Big Chill in New Delhi, just for the perfect setting and feel-good ambiance along with lip smacking food.

Picture Courtesy: Smoke House Deli

Smoke House Deli has opened their brand new outlet at Bandra Kurla Complex, which happens to cater to mostly clientele who want to grab a quick lunch during their break from office, or who want to chill with a drink after work. Time is the essence to this outlet, in my opinion.

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