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Wine & Dine
March 06, 2018

Why We’re Waxing Poetic About The Sahib Room & Kipling Bar

Text by Shirin Mehta

Sous chef Asif Qureshi’s delectable food and the opulent ambience make The Sahib Room & Kipling Bar a restaurant definitely worth seeking out

The paya shorba, in its large white soup platter, jolts awake the taste buds. And so we are made ready for the repast to follow. At The Sahib Room & Kipling Bar, at The St Regis Mumbai, we sit surrounded by luxurious trappings, plush carpets, lavish upholstery and vintage drapes, all inspired by the lavishness of the colonial era. We are facing the enormous glass windows that afford a stupendous city view, enhanced by the lights of night. Chef Asif Qureshi, sous chef, The Sahib Room & Kipling Bar, appears silently at our table, unobtrusive and gentle. He comes from a long line of chefs from Lucknow and has nearly two decades of experience, having worked in some of the leading hospitality chains in India. One of a large number of siblings, they are all chefs in the city, he informs us. He is responsible for the revamped menu and newly brings his signature dishes and earthy taste to the Sahib Room.

We leave the menu to him and are feasted like the sahibs of yore! The shorba mentioned earlier is followed by an array of starters including melt-in-the-mouth ghosht gulauti kebab, redolent murg malai kali mirch, flavourful tandoori chaap and a dudhiya paneer that includes a mix of dates and spices between two bite-sized pieces of paneer. We are, to be honest, already feeling rather full after this delicious repertoire and yet do justice to the mains. This includes nihari ghosht, tender pieces of meat on the bone; murg Awadhi korma with its rich gravy, a delicious Purvanchal ka saag, which proves to be the perfect accompaniment for the meats together with a haldi malai ki saag. And now arrives the pièce de résistance, the ghosht biryani that we cannot resist despite our bulging stomachs. It is aromatic, surprisingly light and the meat is perfectly cooked. We finish with a shahi tukda that looks as nice as it tastes….

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