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Friday, April 26, 2019

Chp 756. Cafe 1730

Earlier this month, I finally got to visit Cafe 1730, situated at the end of Lane 6, Koregaon Park. Even though I have passed this place so many times since I moved to Pune, I always ended up going instead to "Effingut Brewerkz", which is on the ground floor within the same building.

I've been to Effingut at least 50 times now because of their awesome house brews, music and live match screening, and it is just a walking distance from my house. And every time I leave the place, I always look above at the "Cafe 1730" sign on the first floor and tell myself, "Hmmm, gotta try out this place next time", but then it was always back to Effingut again.

So eventually, since my dear neighbours and much beloved "naus" Debbie, Remruati, Genevieve and Jacqueline were leaving Pune for good, I decided to give them a farewell brunch at Cafe 1730. As I have mentioned in my previous Birthday post, all of them had just completed their college education and it is now time for them to head back to Mizoram.

Jacqueline couldn't make it that day due to her final exams, but the other three turned up (even though they too had their final exams going on, ahhh… looks like I might be seeing some of them in Pune again... just kidding :D )

As the four of us walked towards Cafe 1730 from my house, we stopped by briefly at Cologne Spa where our dear friend Rini works. They haven't been to her place of work yet, and so I took them inside the spa.

They loved the place, and as always, were immediately busy taking photos for their Instagram story :D Ahhh... kids these days.

We couldn't stay there for long as Rini was busy attending to the customers and booking appointments, and it kinda looked bad that all of us were just sitting in the reception area. We left the Spa and went next door, which was our destination - Cafe 1730.

I loved the decor and ambience inside, though I must admit the natural light coming in from the large French windows was a bit glaring to my eyes. They have a large smoking section as well, and here's one of the wall decoration photos I took when I went outside to smoke.

It was finally time to order :)

So here is my review of the food and drinks at Cafe 1730 along with their price so you can judge for yourself if it has good VFM or not.

Like I always do, whenever I go to a new joint for the first time, I always start with a Bloody Mary. I have this habit of judging how good the quality of a place is based on the quality of their Bloody Mary. If that is good, chances are, every other drink on the menu is good too.

Their Bloody Mary cost ₹ 395/- which was cheaper than most other places.

It was awesome! It had the perfect mix of Tabasco and Worcestershire sauce along with the right amount of Tomato juice and Vodka.  I knew right then that everything else was going to be good too.

The girls ordered their Mocktails as well.

"Summer Blast" – Litchi juice, Cranberry juice, Lime juice and top with an Ice cream, "Blueberry Colada" – Blueberry crush, Pineapple juice and Coconut cream, and "Paradise Booze" – Peace & Apricot crush, Lime, Sprite and Soda. I love the Summer Blast the most, it had a very tangy and refreshing zing. All of them cost ₹ 225/- each, which was a very reasonable price.

For my next order, I went for the House special – the "1730 Ice Tea". This was their signature cocktail, a variant of a Long Island Ice Tea, and it consisted of five different White spirits, Sweet & sour, Black currant crush, Blue Curacao topped with Ice and Cola.

AMAZING! Yup, if you ever go to this place, make sure you try this out. I was expecting it to be a bit sweet, but it was perfect. In fact, I liked it better than an LIT. Cost: ₹ 495/-

Soon, our Hors d'oeuvre arrived. Yumm. Butter Garlic Prawns tossed in Chilli flakes and other Spices (₹ 395/-). This melted right in our mouth.

Goan Special Beef Chilli Fry (₹ 355/-). So good. If you like Goan specialty, then you'll really like this.

Next, we tried to order the Korean Beef, but unfortunately, they were out of it. And so we ordered the Tender Lemon Chicken (₹ 225/-) instead, which was Cubes of boneless Chicken grilled to perfection, sautéed in creamy lemon sauce.

By the time we were done eating the three appetizers, all of us were quite stuffed, and so we decided not to order Main course, lolz. The food was really really good, and definitely worth the price. We ordered one more round of drinks before leaving the place.

The girls went for a Café Frappe (₹ 175/-) and a Green Apple Ice Tea (₹ 125/-).

Meanwhile, I went for the "Chocolate Dream" – Vodka, Baileys, Kahlua, Chocolate sauce shaken with ice and served in a Martini glass glazed with Chocolate sauce :)

Totally worth it at ₹ 395/- It also served as a good dessert, like an alcoholic chocolate pudding :D

Here's some art photography…. :)

Some more art photography :P

And with that, we were done with Cafe 1730. Debbie, Remruati and Genevieve were super happy. See, it is not difficult to please college-going girls :P

I will really miss these crazy folks a lot. Since we all live in the same neighbourhood, I used to call them over to my place all the time, like when I'm at home alone and about to watch a blockbuster movie on a boring weekend afternoon, and they would reach my place in 5 minutes. And being treated like their elder brother, they didn't care about their looks in front of me, they would just come over in their pyjamas with no make-up on, sometimes without even brushing their teeth, and they would share all sort of stuff with me, the kinda stuff girls don't usually share with other guys of their age group. That's how close we were.

We roamed around KP for some more time, digesting the good food and drinks we just had. We visited the "Entertainment Store" and they selected a couple of Marvel and Cartoon Network T-shirts for me to buy. They too ended up buying a lot of Harry Potter and Avengers merchandise.

As we headed back to my apartment, we marvelled at the "April Pâr" flowers in bloom.

And with that came to end our scrumptious outing at Cafe 1730. I plan to go there again soon, and this time I will definitely have their Main course :D

Wishing Debbie, Remruati and Genevieve a safe journey back home and all the best with their future career. And to those of you looking for a review on Cafe 1730, hope this post was a bit useful. Next post, I will be covering our recent outing at "Indigo Delicatessen" so stay tuned. Until then, cheers.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Chp 755. My Birthday :)

Just celebrated my birthday recently :)

This year, it was quite a different birthday celebration for me, mainly because my birthday fell on Easter. I did get a lot of invitations to go out and party on the eve of my birthday, which was a Saturday night.

First, there was the Starians Party hosted by my friend Kiripiri at Playboy where many of my Mizo friends were going. Then there was the party at T.W.T where my friend DJ Rajbeer personally invited me to celebrate my birthday there. And then there was always the option of calling my friends over to my place for some good time KP house partaay.

But the fact that the next day was Easter filled me with guilt to be spending the previous night that way. Don't get me wrong, I am not patronizing or acting like a saint here. I am the last person to be judging anybody when it comes to spirituality. Those who know me well, know what type of a person I am. I'm not the type who regularly attends Church services, nor am I the type who uploads a selfie with the caption "Thank you Lord Jesus".

But there are certain things I hold sacrosanct, where I draw a fine line, and this was one of them. No worldly pleasures at least during Easter.

I eventually did get to celebrate my birthday the next day with my Prayer Cell family and it was awesome :)

And so on the eve of my birthday, I got home from work, tired and completely drained because we had just launched our latest game (will talk more about that in another post).

I did things as usual, cooking my special Mizo bai along with my last 2 remaining pieces of smoked pork that I was saving up for my birthday :) Ate dinner, watched an episode of "The Rookie" (the season finale, so sad), and then I got ready for bed. I wanted to sleep before the clock struck 12. But just was I was tucking myself under my blanket, around 11:50 PM, my door bell rang!

I immediately knew it was related to my upcoming birthday because nobody turns up at my apartment unannounced just like that. My head immediately spun on who it could be, who all knew it was my birthday that night. DJ Rajbeer knew, but he was busy playing at TWT. Nitin and Teresa knew but they were busy throwing a farewell dinner for Krossi. My dear friend and neighbour Rini knew but she also knew I didn't want a party this time.

And so I switched on the lights again and walked drearily towards my door. Taking a deep breath, I opened my door, expecting some of my Mizo friends to be out there yelling "Surprise!"

Instead, there was this delivery man standing outside my door with a large box. He was grinning from one extreme end to the other and then wished me a happy birthday! It was a surprise birthday cake delivery from my sister Dinpuii!

Aaaaahhhh. :)

So sweet of my sister.

So she had the whole piece above specially made and to be delivered at my house right before 12. The "1 brother 2 sisters sumo" is an inside joke she and my other sister Mazami made a long time ago about starting a Sumo service with that name if we ever ended up living in Mizoram together :)

I did cut the cake that night, but since I was alone, I had to arrange the chairs of my dining table to hold my phone which was on timer, as you can see from the very straight-angled focus. Yeah I did a lot of retakes too :D

And so I slept with a very happy and contented thought.

The next day, I woke up with a big smile and wished myself a Happy Birthday :) And then it was time to get ready for Easter service. Since it was my big day, I decided to spurge a bit and ordered breakfast from Starbucks :P

Yeah, still, it was an overpriced piece of sh*t to me. The butter croissant above at 250 bucks was laughable at best. But their Espresso Frappuccino was awesome as always. Yummm.

I quickly got ready for Church and soon Nitin, Teresa and Rini came to pick me up. Off we went to Church.

The PMCF Easter service was wonderful. Miriami, of the Gosi Miriam fame, sang a beautiful solo, even though she started the note wrong :P And then the Praise and Worship team did an excellent job of pumping up the members of our parish, as they led us through joyful songs of Resurrection with complete body action and dance movements. "A tho leeeeh taaa... A tho leeeeeeeh taaa..." It was such an amazing experience.

Our PMCF Chairman Pu Chawnghminga also delivered a very good and reflective Easter sermon, while keeping it brief and concise. He cracked a couple of jokes now and then which was a really good method of getting everybody's attention.

After the Church service, we all headed outside where we were treated to these colourful Easter eggs painted by the children. Yumm.

I met a couple of friends and we all wished each other a Happy Easter. Now here's something funny. I was so used to wishing people who wished me a Happy Easter with "Happy Easter to you too" that eventually when people came to wish me a Happy Birthday, I ended up saying "Happy Birthday to you too" :D :D :D It happened at least 5 times by mistake and we all laughed so much.

Our Amosa Prayer Cell took a group photo together in front of the Church :) Click/Tap on all photos to enlarge them in high resolution.

With my Undri fam and my longest known friends here in Pune, Daniel and Zodini.

As I was taking a pic with my Viman Nagar fam and KP fam, Ahnei sprinted to be in the photo as well :D

He made it :D

With two beautiful sirens :) Lucky me, and at the same time, unlucky me.

We had our Amosa Prayer Cell meet later in the evening as we had to wish farewell to our extremely active members Debbie, Remruati, Genevieve, Jacqueline and Gospeli. They had all just completed their final year college and were about to head back to Mizoram for good. They will be missed so much. I took a couple of their photos as this was the last time they would be coming to this Church again.




Debbie with the rest of the girls.

And with that, our Easter service was over. While Teresa and Baby headed out to buy meat and vegetables for the night's dinner, I headed back home as I had to pick up the Birthday cake my sister sent.

I was really hungry when I reached home so I ordered a 12" Pepperoni Pork Pizza from Greedy Man Pizzeria. Yay, another self treat birthday food :)

Finally, around 7 PM, Rini came over to my place and the two of us left for the Amosa Prayer Cell Meet along with my large Birthday cake. I was still stuffed from the pizza, I should have never eaten that much just before dinner! :D

At Pi Baby's house, Teresa and the others were busy cooking dinner. Beef, Chicken and Mizo delicacies, yummmm!

Soon, we started our Prayer Meet. Remruati was our Chairwoman for the night, while the others like Debbie and Jacqueline also had different responsibilities. Genevieve and Gosie couldn't make it as they already had other plans.

Our PMCF treasurer Pari and PMCF exec member Vincent gave the outgoing trio a very touching tribute and advice while reading prominent passages from the Bible. Rojo, Chhantea and I too stood up and said a few parting words to them, and finally our Amosa Prayer Cell secretary Mahlua gave them the final farewell message.

This was followed by a ceremonial parting gift presented to them by our Amosa Prayer Cell Leader Pi Baby-i.

We closed our meet with a group prayer, where the different topics to pray for were announced beforehand, ranging from sick members of our community to the outgoing members of our Prayer Cell to the terrible Sri Lankan Church and Hotel bombings which took place earlier that day. One of the topics for the group to pray for was me! :D It was a prayer thanking God for my birthday and for my future well being. I felt sooo awkward, but at the same time it felt so good to have the entire group pray for me :)

We ended our Prayer Cell Meet with the Lord's Prayer, and then we took our traditional group photo.

As you can see from above, the first photo of this post is an edited version of this one. Let's see that photo one more time :D

On the occasion of my birthday, I made all of us wear party hats, except for Debbie, Remruati and Jacqueline who are waiting for their exam results. This is my way of wishing them that they will definitely graduate with flying colours when their results come out.

Nitin and Teresa surprised me with a lovely birthday cake, and they made sure the cake had a Game of Thrones theme! Love them so much for this.

Here is a short video of me blowing the candles out :D

After that it was dinner time. The food looked sooooo good.

Unfortunately, I was still full from the Pizza I had earlier, so I couldn't eat anything. Once everybody was done with their dinner, we cut the other cake my sister had sent me and had it as dessert. Everybody was indeed full.

I also went next door and met my dear friends Margaret and Hriata along with their children and distributed my birthday cake to them as well. In spite of all that, there was still a large portion of cake remaining. That's how big the cake my sister ordered for me was.

And so, that was how I spent my birthday. It was such a different feeling. All my life, I don't think I have spent my birthday that spiritually, and I feel like this empty void inside me had been filled (I'm not talking about the Pizza :P). I am truly lucky to have such a loving Prayer Cell family here in Pune and here is to wishing everybody especially our five outgoing members the very best in life.

Take care for now everyone, God Bless.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Chp 754. Kim Curdashian

Last month, I went an entire week from Monday to Friday on just Curd Rice alone!

As most of us know, Curd rice is considered to be one of the healthiest food in the planet, as it is rich in proteins and carbohydrates, heals stomach upset and improves immunity, cools down the body, increases digestive process, reduces stress and anxiety, and so on.

At first, I thought I wouldn't be able to do it, but I really needed to detox from my recent Mizoram vacation filled with daily fatty pork consumption and fermented madness. Plus, it was a great opportunity to discover the restaurants around my house and office that serve good Curd Rice. And so, for a week, I became… Kim Curdashian. :D :P

Here is my documentation.

4th March, Monday.
Pocket Friendly Café, Viman Nagar.

Curd Rice (Full): ₹ 140
Egg Bhurji: ₹ 60
Egg Suicide: ₹ 60

My first Curd Rice order on Monday was from this place called "Pocket Friendly Café" and it was really good. I had it with small portions of Naga King Chilli pickle and it was the perfect match. Since this was the first time I was ordering from this restaurant, I didn't know the quantity, so I ordered another snack called "Egg Suicide" just in case the rice portion was small, and because I really love the name "Egg Suicide". However, it turns out to be just French Toast :D

5th March, Tuesday.
Chutney's, DP Road.

Curd Rice: ₹ 110

My second order was from Chutney's. I've ordered Curd Rice from this restaurant a couple of times before too, so I knew it was going to be tasty. I didn't order any other side dish with it, I just made some pork sausages at home, and devoured them with a sprinkle of Roasted Mizo chilli flakes. So good :)

6th March, Wednesday.
Rajput restaurant, Koregaon Park.

Tadka Curd Rice: ₹ 140
Masala Omelette: ₹ 80
Roasted Papad: ₹ 20

My third Curd Rice order was from Rajput, which is just walking distance from my house. Their style of curd rice is a little bit different as it is enriched with oily tempered seasoning of ground spices (tadka). The above picture may look a bit oily, but it is not so once you eat it (as the oil does not seep through the thick curd).

7th March, Thursday.
Chopsticks Spice Malabar, Viman Nagar.

Curd Rice:  ₹ 120
Roasted Papad (2): ₹ 60

On Thursday, I ordered Curd Rice from Chopsticks, which specialized in Kerala cuisines. Even though their tadka version contained a lot of ground spices, it had less oil compared to the Punjabi version from Rajput restaurant. I had the curd rice and roasted papad with some homemade chillies grinded with fermented shrimps and omelette. Yummmm!

8th March, Friday.
Dakshin Bhavan, Kharadi.

Curd Rice: ₹ 80
Gobi Manchurian: ₹ 90
Pongal Rice: ₹ 80

And finally, to end my week-long Curd Rice diet, I ordered from Dakshin Bhavan on Friday. Since it was just 80 bucks, I was a bit skeptical about the quantity and ordered Pongal Rice as well, but boy was I wrong. It was filling, and the taste was awesome. Their curd rice was also quite unique too, as it had pieces of pomegranate in it! The subtle sweetness was countered well with my King Chillies.

And so that was it, my tryst with Curd Rice. At the end of five days, I lost 3 KGs, all the pimples on my face disappeared, and I definitely felt rejuvenated. I think I might even have gained some X-Ray vision power as well. :P

You should follow such a diet regime too, it is really good for the body. Until my next post then, cheers.