Saturday, October 29, 2016

simply grills , thrills @ Goa Marriott

I read somewhere “ I want a home facing the sea, but I also want to be close to the mall, the movie multiplexes, the superstore and the children’s school. “ Miramar is not just close to all these and more, but also close to a science center, a sports complex, and the cultural center of Goa, Kala Academy. Miramar is not just the most perfect place to live in the whole wide country , according to me, it is also home.
The Goa Marriott situated in Miramar, faces the Arabian sea, as well as the Mandovi River, thereby garnering one of the most beautiful sunsets the city of Panjim has to offer.



The Goa Marriott resort in Miramar, has reintroduced their sea facing outdoor fine dining restaurant 'simply grills' . The concept is fairly simple, you choose the fresh catch of the day by weight and ask for it to be cooked in any number of marinades. Seafood and outdoor eating is synonymous to Goa, but this is the five star version of the local shack experience.



 While the shacks serve up beer in bottles, these guys have a themed bar every night! We had ginger margaritas in testubes, a pineapple mocktail in a beaker, which was passed of as glucose, and a red cycle ambulance was wheeled in with it's own strawberry mojito through the hospital drip apparatus! There are plans of starting a herb and spices infused bar, using fresh herbs grown in house, aswell.




The young and dynamic team at the Goa Marriott are taking the Food and beverage scene in Goa by storm. So while Goa is famous for it’s alfresco dining by the sea, the typical shack eating experience has gotten a majot makeover.

The food too is beautifully plated, thoughtfully paired with complimentary side dishes.

 We started with the sriracha marinated calamari which was panjim fried and served on a bed of focaccia drizzled with basil pesto. A dish rich in textures and flavours it set the standard of rest of the meal pretty high.

The 'tall boy' is a triple decker fish burger to your choice of fish using fresh avocados instead of mayo was inspired. A very European dish , even though it was burger, it reminded me of fish and chips.
The lobster Thermidor was a really glorious looking dish, but to be fair all lobster dishes look glorious to me, a crustacean lover, especially when it is served in the shell. read about best places for crab in Goa . The lobster  was a tad salty due to liberal use of Parmesan cheese, thus overpowering the sweetness of the lobster flesh.



The bebinca cheese cake


The simply grills unlike its name is hardly simple, and most definitely not just about Grills.

The sunsets ofcourse are the spectacular draw, and the restaurant opens at 6 in the evening, allowing for a leisurely supper. The infinity pool, as well as the waterfall surrounding the pool bar, add to the aqua theme of the open air dining space.  Watching the tour boats sailing on the Mandovi, or the beams from the lighthouse from across the River at Aguada; this place is meant to indulge in the slow life.
the infinity pool with a waterfall around the pool bar

The days fresh catch

microherbs at the open kitchen. kitchen garden for all to dee!

The bright eyes on the fish speak: fresh

tasting times with these tastetubes

a tall boy indeed


Next came the pesto pomfret . I was keen on seeing what chef created with the pomfret, a fish which is as versatile as chicken when it comes to pairing flavours. So while the Konkani belt makes a mean pomfret koliwada, or the fiery Goan recheado, or the herby mint chutney pomfret, and the mildly flavoured steamed parsi patrani machi. One can shallow fry, deep fry, steam a pomfret, and pairs amazingly with far eastern flavours as well as middle eastern spices.Chef made an Italian inspired basil pesto Pomfret, which exemplified the range of both the cook as well as the produce . It was perfectly cooked to maintain the freshness without going dry or rubbery. 

For desserts we were indulged in a chocolate papa bun, which is essentially a fried brioche bun, which has layers and layers of butter folded within it, this came with nutella, in a sort of breakfast-for-dinner kind of dessert.






The chilli garlic prawns served with a silken smooth mash, was a meal in itself, again interestingly plated, byChef Ganesh and his team.

The real treat was the bebince cheesecake which is the signature dish at simply grills. The coconut jaggery layered ‘queen of all Goan desserts, meets, the baked new york cheese cake in an east meets west juganbandi. And before you ask me why, lets just say why not? The rest of the country is going gaga over gulab jamun cheesecakes, and other Indian desserts paired off with cheese, here is Goa’s take.


What I especially loved is that while all the managers as well as the chefs are from outside of Goa, and most of them are celebrating their first on season of Goa, they have been mindful of the cooking ethos of Goa, these are fresh days catch thoughtfully prepped and elegantly plated to showcase the best of Goa.