If you’ve got a hankering for fish and aren’t sure where to head, check out our list of places to go for the best from under the sea. Rhea Dhanbhoora and Dev Goswami tell you more…
From Bombil Fry to Crabs in Butter Garlic Sauce, there’s nothing like a good catch. And so, before the monsoon sets in and you get crabby because of the lack of options, try out these restaurants that focus on seafood and nothing else. We give you their specials and approximate price per head to guarantee a lip smacking good time.
SOMETHING FISHY @ `375
If you’re looking for somewhere where you can go with a slightly more upscale ambiance but aren’t willing to dig till there are holes in your pockets to pay for it, Something Fishy at The International by Tunga will be your best bet. The place has seafood that will satiate your cravings as well as a value for money buffet lunch priced at a humble `375 plus taxes. Chef Ravi Shetty tells us that their most popular dish is the Paplet Tawa Fry. He explains, “It’s spicy, crispy and available throughout the year. A lot of people prefer to have it along with their drinks.”
Must Try: Paplet Tawa Fry
Where: MIDC Central Rd, Hanuman Nagar, Andheri (E)
SOUL FRY @ `600
If you’ve frequented Bandra often enough, there’s no way that you’ve missed out on at least hearing about the Goan restaurant Soul Fry. The fish joint is known for its Fish Thali. Owner Meldan Dcunha tells us, “The Fish Thali is a great option for office goers at lunch time. What’s unique about it is that it has three different seafood varieties, is wholesome and a meal by itself.”
Must Try: The Fish Thali
Where: Silvercroft, Bandra (W)
TRISHNA @ `800
Trishna has always been one of the best seafood joints in Mumbai, with a mix of old and new in its ambiance and the smell of seafood wafting through the restaurant. While dishes such as Lobster in Chilly Garlic Sauce, Pomfret Hyderabadi Tikka and Jumbo Prawns Tandoori are extremely popular, nothing beats the Crab in Butter Pepper Garlic Sauce (rates as per size). Manager Ravi Anchan tells us, “We started in 1991. There are now so many restaurants which specialise in seafood. It’s what the public wants!” Whether you want traditional specialities or some continental fare, Trishna is the place to be. They also have a branch in Lokhandwalla.
Must Try: Crab in Butter Pepper Garlic Sauce
Where: 7, Rope Walk Lane, Kalaghoda, Fort
GAJALEE COASTAL FOOD @ `700
The restaurant at Vile Parle serves up some of the best seafood in town, at very affordable prices. It’s almost always full, so make sure you get there early. From Clam Koshimbir, Prawn Pickle, and Tandoori Crab to Crab in Green Chilly Sauce and Chinese Pomfret Butter Pepper, the specialities are endless, but you can’t make a trip to Gajalee without trying their famous Bombil (Bombay Duck fry). Manager of operations Santosh Singh tells us, “Seafood is considered good for health and with people getting more health conscious, there has been a major shift from other food items to seafood.”
Must Try: Bombil (Bombay Duck Fry)
Where: Kadamgiri Complex, Hanuman Road, Vile Parle
SAGAR @ `200
This little joint in Malad has a surprisingly good selection of seafood. Owner Hilary Lobo tells us, “The squid at our restaurant is our speciality. The Squid Butter Fry or even the squid in chili sauce are highly recommended dishes.” The 25-year-old restaurant sees people stream in from all over the city for their seafood.
Must Try: Squid Butter Fry
Where: Kharodi Naka, Marve Road, Malad (W)
MAHESH LUNCH HOME @ `800
Another one of the long standing seafood joints in the city, Mahesh Lunch home too has seen customers thronging in over the years. The restaurant is famous for its tandoori crab but if you make a trip down there, you shouldn’t miss out on specials such as Prawn Gassi, Fish Fry, Fish Tikka and more. Manager Manoj tells us, “With two branches at Fort and in Juhu, we’re still almost always packed for both lunch as well as dinner.”
Must Try: Tandoori Crab
Where: Juhu Tara Road, Next To Tulip Star Hotel, Juhu
CULTURE CURRY @ `600
The restaurant, with its décor offering you glimpses of the South, is perfect for your next seafood adventure. Their Prawns and Raw Mango Curry is one of their specialities along with Chettinad Fish Fry. And don’t worry about the monsoon ruining your fish party. Owner Dr Suhas Awchat tells us, “Since our brands are ISO certified, have HACCP compliant kitchens and we are committed to serving unfrozen seafood, we have tied up with seafood exporters from the Peninsula of India who specialise in high speed mechanised fishing 20 miles into the ocean. We receive fresh seafood all through the year.” So, if you have a hankering for spicy seafood when it’s raining, you know where to head to.
Must Try: Cheman Mangacharu
Where: Hinduja Hospital, Mahim
EXCELLENSEA @ `700
The restaurant has always been a great place to eat. The seafood is great and the dining experience even better. With coastal cuisine as their speciality, you can be sure you’re in good hands when trusting your dining experience to the seafood joint. A trip there means you have to try specials such as Konkani Sungta, Prawns in Krechai Sauce, Fish Excellensea, Prawns in Red Sauce and more. Company founder Suraj Salian tells us “There has been a huge transformation in the sea food industry over the last few years. As people grow more health conscious, they tend to avoid red meat and become more inclined towards seafood which is rich in omega 3 fats. There was a setback in the seafood industry due to the oil spill but now it is back on track.”
Must Try: Prawns in Krechai Sauce
Where: Ballard Estate, Fort
HIGHWAY GOMANTAK @ `200
If you’re tired of big fancy restaurants and want a simple meal that’s all about the food, there’s no place quite like Highway Gomantak. The simplicity and ambiance makes it perfect for those who want to sit down and let the food do the talking. If you’re a seafood lover and can’t get enough of that Goan style fish, this is the perfect place for you.
Must Try: Kolambi Masala
Where: Gandhi Nagar, Service Road, Bandra (E)
Fish you can’t Miss
For the freshest catches right off our coast, make sure you try these fish out:
Bombil Bombil, or Bombay duck, can be fried fresh or salted, dried and roasted or even made into pickle.
Pomfret This light fish is perfect lightly baked or even coated with green chutney and steamed.
Mandeli This small fish tastes good fried or in a spicy curry.
Surmai The meaty fish tastes best in curry but can also be drizzled with some butter and herbs and baked.
I think my favourite restaurant to date for seafood would be Highway Gomantak. It’s simple, it’s down to earth and it’s value for money. Nothing beats a good seafood meal, who cares about how fancy or not the restaurant is? I can’t get enough of their Surmai fry and Fish Platter.
— Apramey Ramnath, 18
When you’re talking about seafood, nothing beats Gajalee. It’s inexpensive compared to other great seafood joints around town and they have the best Bombil Fry in the city. The rest of their dishes are really good too and they’ve got quite a good selection of fish. When in season, their crab and lobster is great too.
— Ryan Vaz, 21