29th Sep (Tue): This review goes from a tasting session hosted by our friend Megha (@Fitfoodiemegha) and Sumitro (PR who has conceptualized, designed and help this place be what it is today). This place is located at the Pashan-Sus link road junction just close to the Nissan showroom that you encounter on the highway. The place is pretty huge and can accommodate people of all ages as it has a section for family outings, a bustling section for the younger generation and they are also coming up with a new section adjacent which will have a dance floor as well. They are already known for hosting big parties and get together and are doing pretty good in that space.
Parking: They have ample place to accommodate all your cars and two wheelers so that’s a score for sure.
Ambience: The place is beautifully crafted and spaced in a luxurious fashion to let you unwind from your daily work hassles. The seating is aptly suited with mini private sections of low couches. They have created zones within the area by making use of different aspects such as a bar counter, a stage for live bands and dance (if you kind of get carried away in the mood ;)), thatched roofed shelters where couples can relax and have a romantic time, a section for the more enthusiastic ones with a pool table and walls which radiates a blue aura of UV light from the graffiti laden walls and so on. I am pretty sure you will find a corner which appeals to your taste. As the name is bottle rock they have lived up to i by making use of recycled bottles to add to the decor. Hung from places this certainly gives a glimmer to the otherwise dull edges.
Sumitro had us introduced to the Chef and the manager in charge and while we had a very generous offer to choose from anything on the menu, we instead insisted that to be a chef’s choice to surprise us with his finest culinary skills. So accordingly within 5 mins a set menu was decided and within no time we were presented with colorfully decorated mock tails one after the other. It was a fashion show of drinks by all means where we got to see bunch of colors, textures, props, fruits and what not. Check the pictures to get the hang of it.
the night away (Drinks – 4/5):
Orange Blossom [cocktail] – Served in a eloquent glass which had a beautiful bird perched on the edges this drink made of Gin and tonic was first to make its presence on the ramp.
Kiwi Martini [cocktail] – Next came in the Kiwi martini. This was a slight variant of Martini with Kiwi squash to give it a color and slight sweet hint. This was good simple cocktail which was liked by all i guess. For the decor, it had a cherry spliced between two Lime wedges.
Traffic Jam [cocktail] – This was a multi colored drink and i am not sure of the drinks that dressed up this beauty. Please Contact Chef or Google it.
Pinna Colada [cocktail] – This one was a quiet a regular rum coconut cream based drink but the contestant was quiet a challenging one with the entire decor. It was presented in a cut pineapple which made it stand out of the crowd. The taste was what it’s supposed to be, not very fond of such variants personally but it was a good show for the evening for sure.
Spice Girl [mock tail] – This one was the only mock tail served on the table and as such the only one that Megha got to taste since she is not into cocktails. For taste please refer to her blog or review on zomato for bottlerock. One thing which it stood out on was that the drinks didn’t really get mixed into one another. That’s like the basic the colors need to remain separate even after a while. It had a very giant chilly on the rim of the glass to add to its presentation. Recommended for spicy girls out there.
Funky Tofi [mocktail] – The only chocolate based drink of the evening. This one had a lot of froth from the churned milk in it and was decorated with a pierced heart using chocolate sauce. The drink was mild sweet and all the different ingredients could be made out. Not sure if it’s supposed to be that way or it wasn’t just stirred well but none the less a decent entry.
Just getting started (Starters -3.75/5):
Nachos Messicani (4/5) – Nachos were definitely a good way to start for both veggies and non-veg lovers. (Yah we were 4 people split into 2 veg n 2 non veg). The nachos were served on a flat plate topped with a smooth yellow sauce and some fresh veggies like iceberg lettuce and some other veggies which I am not very sure as couldn’t dissect much in those dim lit sit outs. The nachos had a topping of creamy white sauce which had a texture like that of hummus. Absolute Yum. The only sad part was that it was just a small scoop and not served as a dip. Would have loved to have more portions of that in the form of a dip.
Paneer Shola Kebab (3.5/5) – Finally something for the veggie lovers. Megha could have this and would put it better in her words but I found it decent for sure. The paneer were soft and well marinated. Served on an oval plate with a mint leave to garnish, they were what kept Megha going as the balance was always more onto non veg side. (Good for us – he he :D)
Prawns in Young Butter Garlic (3.5/5) – Huge headless prawns served with a tail just the way they do at barbeque nation. The platting was simple for this one. No clue why the butter was called young but the taste was definitely fresh. The batter as a whole was much mild then typically available. I like all my dishes spicy so this was a little let down on my standards but you should taste them on own to form an opinion. Certainly not bad in any way.
Chicken Dum Kebab – Finally the shop stopper for the night has arrived. This was undoubtedly their signature dish and the chef also went ahead to confirm our belief that this is one of their specialties and launched first time in pune by them. You won’t find this char grilled kebabs in a handi topped with cheese at any other place. Atleast that’s what they are sure of. The name Dum kebab because the chicken is cooked in pot with spices like that of a biryani sealed off with atta.
Chicken Shola Kebab – The shola kebab was decent spicy cheese topped kebab. Unfortunately couldn’t relish this and understand its true flavors due to a certain personal delay that came in before I could dig into this. IT turned a bit hard once cold and as such would love to try it again sometime later. The team did offer to re heat it or serve a fresh but we were spoilt for choices so we turned the offer down to continue the food journey onwards without any interruptions.
Dahi Ke Kebab – This was the only dish that was a let-down. Like we had a show stopper that night, we had a malfunction in the form of dahi k kebab. Sorry guys but that’s honest words coming straight out. It was simply put a bread roll that your mom makes at home. The bread surrounding the filling was so over whelming that it altered the recipe for good. The inner filling of hung curd was also not something it should be like. I had had this menu at Barbeque nation and they had served it in a very appealing way.
Chicken Lasooni – This was like a floating pool of garlic which I like by the way. The garlic was made to give just about a subtle taste to the dish. I would have welcomed it equally well had they been crispier burnt to brown color but ok still a decent preparation.
Chicken Nawabi Handi – This was made in a Lucknowi gravy and had very simple look and appeal. The platting could certainly be enhanced to give a good appeal. The gravy was very homogenous and lacked a direction in taste.
Fungi-de-Pasta – Penne pasta cooked in a rich white cream sauce with freshly ground pepper and herbs sprinkled over fresh Italian mushrooms and black olives. As a side dish we were served with cheese garlic bread.
Mushroom Pahadi – I just had a spoon of it but wasn’t very convinced. Yet again it lacked appeal and the mushroom that I got was full mushroom. Yes, it wasn’t sliced one bit. Not sure if that’s a new way to serve or what but I personally felt it was a letdown. The portion was wholesome for veggies but the lack of presentation and strong flavors got it scored low on taste-o-meter.
Nargis-Kofta: This was again a dish which brought down the score for mains. The dish was served with one big kofta in the middle submerged in cashew based gravy. This gravy was more salty than allowed and the kofta was too sweet then needed. Overall the dish was a big no-no.
The roti and lacha parathas that we had were good and complemented just right to the mains.
For desserts we were given a choice between Gulab jamuns and chocolate brownie with ice cream. We unanimously opted for brownie in spite of their gulab jamuns known to be a crowd puller. Not just that we ended up having two plates of their lovely dessert. The brownie was just soft enough to be scooped with spoon and the sauce was piping hot just the way it should be. Just a small suggestion here from me would be to make the brownie more bitter. The taste quotient for just the brownie has scope of improvement. But the dish as a whole was great to dig into.
Service: Service was very good no doubt with 2 people dedicatedly at our service and the Chef and the manager in charge taking a personal note of our presence and likes. However, I ended up giving a significant tip to the chef/ management – to change the platting or at-least train the staff to serve the dishes so that they do justice to the preparation. E.g.: Dum ke kebab were super awesome for first two kebabs but the latter two were dry and lacked cheese toping. If the recipe demands to serve liquid cheese with the kebabs then the person serving is not being fare to the dish.
Overall, we had a great time thanks to team Bottlerock and our friend Megha who pulled this through. A special vote of thanks to Sumitro who kept us surprising and occupied with delectable dishes served one after the other and the chef – Mr. Rajpal who made the evening special with his recipes.
My overall rating to the place would be 7.25/10 here benefit of the doubt given and I would rate it a 4 on 5.