If you’ve lived in Mumbai long enough, you know how many lanes and by-lanes our beautiful city has, and how there is a pharmacy, a stationery shop and a general store in almost all of these lanes. Sometimes, these gullys have cute little cafés or restaurants that go unnoticed by even food-obsessed Mumbaikars like me. Zomato is definitely on my list of frequently used apps, and yet, even Zomato can’t help me to find such hidden gems when I am searching for new restaurants to go to. If you’re tired of searching too, you can now rejoice! Here is a list of five legendary tucked-in-a-lane cafés and restaurants for you to try out:
1. Crossroads 92, Borivali
Do you know of shady eateries that making you feel like you are in a place that you’re not supposed to be at? Crossroads 92 feels nothing like that. The ambience of this place is spot on. It is not so difficult to locate this restaurant despite the fact that it is in a by-lane. The food, presentation, sheer variety and quality are so good that it is difficult to understand why this place is not popular. Ayesha Farid, a regular at Crossroad 92, says, “Crossroads 92 is a hidden gem; I’ve been thoroughly impressed since the first time I visited this place.” The only drawback is that it does not provide parking space.
Suggestions: Thai Chilly Cheese Rolls, the Chef’s Special Chicken Wings, and Crossroads Nachos
2. Frisbees, Bandra
This one is a personal favorite. If you love burgers, I promise that Frisbees won’t disappoint you. This burger joint is hard to find, but it once you get there, you won’t stop going back. It is small and can hardly accommodate a group larger than seven, but the interiors are pretty and well-maintained. The food is filling and worth every rupee you spend. Despite having only three tables, Frisbees is one of the best cafés you will ever go to in Mumbai.
Suggestions: Crispy Chicken Burger, Brownie Milkshake and Chicken Poppers
3. The Yoga House, Bandra
If you’re a vegetarian, this is ‘the’ place for you! As cool as the name sounds, The Yoga House looks ten times cooler. Mann Jain, a regular at this quaint eatery, says, “Because I’m a dancer and a vegetarian, I am always looking for quiet, peaceful places and good, healthy food. The Yoga House is the only place where I can enjoy both these aspects together.” The ambience of this cute, little café really is its USP. It is a must-try if you’re looking to sample something new, like Zucchini Noodles.
Suggestions: Ten Grains Bread, Signature Hash Browns, and Yogi Tea
4. Monk Wonk, Kandivali
If we’re talking about small and cozy restaurants, how can we not mention Monk Wonk? Faizal Hala, a resident of Kandivali and frequent visitor here, says, “A restaurant like Monk Wonk was definitely needed in Kandivali; residents want good Chinese food, and this restaurant gives us just that and more.” Apart from satisfying all your Chinese cravings, it also aims at full customer satisfaction and succeeds in doing so.
Suggestions: Chicken Basil Dumplings, Basil Chilli Cottage Cheese, and Chicken Pad Thai Noodles
5. Ankur – The Coastal Bistro, Fort
Small but classy because of its impressive interiors and delicious seafood, Ankur is one of the most underrated restaurants in town. Armed with the perfect seafood flavours and a fine dining feel, this restaurant easily becomes one’s favorite in no time. So the next time you’re craving for some blow-your-mind coastal dishes, you know where to go. Hidden in the by-lanes of Kala Ghoda, a meal at Ankur will be worth your money.
Suggestions: Veg Gassi, Meenkaidina, and Fish Kochi
These five restaurants are simplistic, and yet they win hearts of foodies, so call your friends and make a plan to try these restaurants. You’ll know for yourself that not all good food places have to be right in front of your eyes; sometimes you need to dig deep to find gold!
Tasneem Lokhandwala is a handpicked product of the Bayside Pathfinder where we empower the young and the young at heart with the power of storytelling. To become a part of our extended family of unique contributors, call up Prem Madnani at +91 9892913788 or email him on [email protected].