April Rain with Chef Milind Sovani

09:55:00 Sudipti Singh 0 Comments

If you haven't heard of Chef Milind Sovani, it's time you did. His restaurant 'Song of India' based in Singapore has recently won the bragging rights to being known as the only  Indian restaurant to get a Michelin Star in the South-East Asia. Now isn't that something?

When he's not spearheading the 'East or west Indian food is the best' revolution in other countries, he's running this beautiful restaurant, tucked in a corner of the bustling ITI Road. Though he is not always around, understandable as he flits between his different engagements ranging from feeding hungry celebrities to attending food shows or guesting as master chef to other restaurants , he makes sure his highly diligent and trained staff take over the reins to uphold the repute that his restaurants have garnered.

Chef Milind has been favorite of the stars as well. His repertoire of clientele boasts of political honchos like Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi to International figures such as Nelson Mandela to Bollywood stars of Madhuri Dixit's and Amitabh Bacchan's calibre.

So when we were invited for a tasting as well as a tete-a-tete with the chef himself we scampered to Uber ourselves to the venue. Ironically, it was raining while we made way to April Rain (huehue) but the good thing is it's bang in front of the street and the sign is really hard to miss.

Chef Milind and family greeted us with a smile (and so did the fellow bloggers, because we were in character and typically late) and played perfect hosts. 
We were regaled with stories of his early career and the different aspects of being a chef while we dug into the delicious fare personally curated by the chef himself.

We started off with some GUAVA MARGARITA and EXOTIC THAI which were the recommended mocktails.
Our personal favorite was probably GUAVA MARGARITA not only because it tasted refreshingly of fresh guavas but it reminded us of the time when we ate ripe guavas with a good sprinkling of salt and chilli powder. Well, the chef had successfully recreated the same experience with the margarita especially since it was served in a salt and chilli rimmed glass.

The EXOTIC THAI was more tropical tasting with watermelon and mint with lemon grass in it. However, a caveat, it might just taste a bit too sweet to some who do not prefer overtly-sweet drinks. It did found quite a few fans in the table so I guess it can definitely be tried. The sweetness a few notches down and it would be prefection.

The starters were impressive to say the least. The chef has tried to create finger foods that were easy to eat yet gourmet in the way it was prepared.
Case in point, MUMBAI'S FAB MARTINI CROSTINI which was basically pav bhaji served in a martini glass which was more handy than we had thought. It came with a long slice of bread, perfectly buttered and was convenient to scoop out the bhaji with. Ingenious!

MASALA ALOO KULZZA was another surprisingly innovative yet tasty dish. A base of kulcha stuffed with spiced potatoes and topped with the basic pizza toppings of cheese, jalapenos,olives etc. gave the illusion of a pizza, especially when served sliced. But a bite down and the hit closer home than it should. Do give this a shot.

FILO WRAPPED OREGANO CHEESE STICKS were just another example of the simplicity combined with ease of consuming. Each cheesestick was served in a shot glass with some salsa dip in it. The cheese sticks were crispy on the outside and gooey in the inside. Perfect.

CRISPY FISH WITH PRAWN BHARTA was another of our favorites and looked so yum! It was a slice of boneless fish dipped in batter and fried golden. It was topped with tangy mix of prawns and fresh vegetables.

PANI PURI VODKA SHOTS looked very tempting and interesting as a concept. However, true lovers of the puchka/panipuri/golgappa might want to steer clear of this, especially the ones with a weak disposition to alcohol. In contrast, Mr. TKD loved it. So it had several test tubes of pani puri tangy water mix spiked with copious amount of alcohol, a bowl of crispy pani puri balls ready to be broken into and stuffed, a spicy lentil mix and a bowl of sev. All I would say is, go easy with the Vodka spiked water.

MUSHROOM ON KHARI was another of our favorite. It was a bruschetta like dish with creamy mushrooms and salsa but instead of the bread it used a khari instead which we thought was genius as the khari gave it another level of lightness and crunchiness to the dish. Vegetarians, give this a shot.

Usually once we are done with the starters, the desserts is mostly what we look forward to. But this time we loved the selection of dishes the chef had lined up for us.

EGG KEEMA PAV was first up and it was delicious. The mince chicken was cooked spicy and kicking and topped with an egg, served with buttered buns. It was a perfect amalgamation of street food and gourmet, a modern, classy twist to the classic dish.

FISH FILET IN CAJUN SPICE had a filet of perfectly cooked fish sitting on a bed of smoothly mashed potatoes and a pool of creamy sauce spiced with oregano, thyme, pepper and garlic. Delish.

CHICKEN STEAK is a specialty and something Chef Milind talks very fondly of. He certainly out did himself, because the steak was tender and cooked to perfection. As you’d expect, it came with a side of mashed potatoes and vegetables and a rich, red wine sauce so rich and tasty it’d make you weep with joy. Ok, exaggeration. But you get it, it was really good.

Our most favorite (I know, I’m using this word quite liberally in this post. Bear with me) dish was probably the SEAFOOD THAI GREEN CURRY served with STEAMED RICE. We are strictly pro-chicken people which means we are not that into sea food as we’d wish as food bloggers, but this curry was so rich and impeccable, the fish in it so tender and everything went so deliciously with the long grained rice that we couldn’t help but fall for it.

Desserts came with an option of Gajar ka halwa or blueberry cheesecake and we went with the latter. The BLUEBERRY CHEESECAKE was a bit too sweet for my liking. I’m a cheesecake fanatic and I like the cheesecake a bit more rich, a bit sweet-sour and smooth. The salty graham cracker crust is another thing that I look forward to in a cheesecake. But this cheesecake had everything sweet on sweet. It was topped with blueberry coulis and whipped cream. Not my jam (see, what I did there? :D )

We ended the affair with PAAN SHOTS which were literally just…shots…tasting like paan.  Sometimes my profundity surprises me.

Well, to wind up this post, we’d give this post a thumbs up and recommend you give it a shot. As usual, do let us know what you thought of it?

Happy Kukkad hunting!

April Rain Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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