Happy October everyone

Welcome to the month of  October and celebrate Gandhi Jayanti, Navratri,Vijay Dashami and  Bakri Id .Dont expect much from our Markets….Sensex and Nifty too are Human and Sensitive to abuse !

As Diwali approaches early next month expect the Political Election Pitch to get more aggressive and personal and even shamelessly abusive…..some may revel at the entertainment of it all….Not me

Less you read the Newspapers and see TV,more Happy you will be !

Cheers !

My Top 10 Chinese Restaurants in Mumbai & Pune & Bengaluru~ Vouch for the Vegetarian fare

Appetising Stir Fried Chinese Greens

You better believe this ! There are over 3000 Chinese eateries in Mumbai City ! from small tuck in Joints to huge impressive decor and hugely expensive  restaurants in 5 star Hotels

Have Tried 5 Spices, Flamboyante , Nankings, Chopsticks,Golden Dragon at Hotel Taj Mahal,Shanghai at ITC Grand Central in Parel,Main Mainland China in Andheri,Sampan at Hotel Novotel ,CG’s 83 at Kemps Corner ( earlier the Famous China Garden of Nelson Wang)and many others in Mumbai & Pune ~ even at all the leading Clubs in Mumbai and Pune ~ Mings at Colaba was my fav for the Buddhas Delight,the Pot Soup that served six  and the lovely Pepper  in Oil accompaniment ~ alas it shut down !

It’s a Myth that Big is Better or that More Expensive is Better Food !

As a Foodie,I’m always looking out for Quality Food, made with Quality Hygiene,Quality and Fresh Ingredients, by Quality Chefs at Quality Prices !

A Friend Owns the Popular Order In Chain of ‘Mr Chows’ and has been asking me to try it ~ says to just call him and he will plan the Feast ~ Planning to take him up on this soon

If any of you out there recommend I try some Chinese Restaurant in Mumbai or Pune for awesome Vegetarian  ,then do let me know and also what Dish should I try there specifically ! ~ and if I like it and do not experience any stomach ache unless of course I love it and overeat ! then  I may just reward you with a scrip recommendation that will cure your Aching Portfolio ! ~ Cheers !

I begin by offering Some Advice as to how to Order your Chinese meal and also stating my Menu Preferences before I list my Top 10 Chinese Restaurants in Mumbai (Eight) and Pune(One) and Bengaluru(One)

Some advice to add Value to Your Chinese Veg Meal and so you Order well and enjoy your Meal:

  • Ask the Steward  taking your Order to instruct the Kitchen and the  Chef to avoid the standard Chinese ingredient, Ajino Moto Salt or if they use it,to do so very mildly
  • Rice or Noodles are staple with the Main Course ~ Check around the table who prefers what and order accordingly ~ look for menu variety in these staples
  • Always inquire with the Steward on the Size of Helpings and order accordingly ~ if unsure it’s prudent to order a single helping before deciding to order a second ~ this will avoid carrying Doggy bags back home as Chinese Food is best enjoyed Fresh~ in fact,as a policy, many good restaurants will not pack a Doggy Bag for you for the leftovers as the quality of Food may deteriorate if preserved too long,even if refrigerated,and not consumed fresh and at the right temperature
  • Request the Steward to suggest Some Dishes,even off the Menu, that the Restaurant may be famous for and prepare for regular patrons  ~ like White Buns and a French Beans Special by CGs
  • Tell the Steward how you like your Soup or Main Course and he will suggest accordingly ~ For instance if you like a Thick Soup Like I do,then don’t order a Light or Clear Soup ~ Inquire off the Steward if unsure  of the Nature and Type of the Dish on the Menu ~ However  ensure you’re not tricked into ordering  the most expensive dish on the menu! ~you will experience such psychological manipulation by Stewards at many restaurants ! ~ they are trained for this so don’t grudge them the effort !
  • Be Sure of the Sauce you want the Dish to be made in ~ safer to stay with a light non spicy or less spicy sauce as the Black Beans or Sczhewan may be too spicy and will ruin your Dish ~ Be gracious but don’t be too accommodating even to someone with you who enjoys spicy Szchewan ~ Once I had to down a full litre of water to calm my tongue !
  • Be Adventurous ! ~ Try at least one Dish you have never tried before ! ~ you may just discover something special
  • Sharing Dishes would make it Cheaper and don’t feel embarrassed or awkward to instruct the Steward to make the Soup 1 by 2 ~ that’s one order of Soup being shared by Two and therefore served in two separate Bowls ~ The Soup Helping at Noodle Bar is quite Large and can easily be shared by Two rather than ordering two Separate Helpings of the Same Soup
  • Return the Dish ,without making a Fuss,if you find it too salty,or spicy or stale or undercooked or smelling of  or containing Non Vegetarian Ingredients ~ often the kitchen area is not separate for cooking Veg and Non Veg Food and so Stirring Ladles and Frying Woks could be  common to cook both ~ Once a leading Restaurant served me a Sea Food Soup and the Manager insisted they were Mushrooms and not Sea Food pieces ! ~ Walked out for their attitude~ other Tables too sympathised ~ it really was seafood !
  • Avoid eating of Chinese Food Carts that are all over the town ~ Food may look and be tasty and cheap ~ but the preparation and cleaning hygiene is poor and you may encounter a bout of food poisoning ~ I’ve seen how they cut cabbage and carrots and spring onions on the road and the  water they use to clean these and how used bowls and plates and spoons and forks are simply immersed in a bucket of water once or twice and quickly pulled out and wiped to serve another !  ~ a survey had revealed that nine out of ten such Chinese Food Carts there was some intensity of food poisoning involved ~ mostly semolina due to the quality of noodles used  ~ this does not mean you may never get food poisoning at a good restaurant !
My Menu Preferences….

Soup ~ I Prefer Thick Soups rather than Clear Light Soups ~When I was a kid,loved Sweet Corn Plain,migrated to Sweet Corn Vegetable ~occasionally yet have them~ then the Manchow and Hot and Pepper ~ now love the Veg Lung Fung Soup ~ alas can find it well made now only by Smoking Lees, just like Nelson Wang of China Garden Fame made it ~ If I was Sick this was one taste that could cure and revive me ! ~ most use cubes that have non veg stock to make this soup,but not Smoking Lees ~ a well made Veg Clear Soup,Lemon Coriander Soup or a Pepper Soup ( Noodles Bar) too is quite delightful….

Starters ~Freshly baked Soft White Buns, Crackling Spinach,Cripy Corn,Corn Cream,Old Time fav Spring Rolls,Steamed and Pan Fried Wontons , Dim Sums , K P Chow ( no one can match Nelson Wang of China Garden Fame for this one ! ~ it’s deep fried vegetables in spicy soya sauce ),Hakka Mushroom with Spring Onions,Hakka or Chilli Paneer,Garlic Chilli or Straw Potatoes…..

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Indian Presidential Race Hots Up ~ Our Extraordinary Country is being Run by Ordinary People !

Indian Presidential Race Hots Up ~ Our Extraordinary Country is being Run by Ordinary People ! 

Just too many ‘C’s !

Indian Politics have always been a ‘C’onundrum of ‘C’riminality,’C’orruption and ‘C’ommunalism ~ and ‘C’oalition ‘C’ompulsions !

It’s now become a ‘C’onvoluted ‘C’omedy to elect our next Rubber Stamp President !

There should be a ‘C’onsensus ‘C’andidate to elect our President next month ~ Head of our ‘C’onstitution

Ideally the President should be Non Political ~ and the election process should be depoliticised ~ but really never is except for when Abdul Kalam became our worthy President ~ Hope he assumes Presidency again next month

Instead we have Congress announcing their President Preferences without consulting even it’s allies in the UPA 2 Govt  let alone discussing the names with the leading Opposition Party BJP

Amusingly yesterday it was a Congress ally TMC Head,Mamta Banerjee who made public the Congress President,Sonia Gandhi’s President Preferences ~ Then even more stunningly Mulayam Singh of the Samajwadi Party and she  within an hour announced their own three and quite different preferences ~ one of which was our own PM ! ~ and one the much liked and worthy Abdul Kalam

India’s ‘C’ommon man has no Voice !

Our Extraordinary Country is being Run by Ordinary People ! 

One last thought ~ Even if mid term General Elections  do come about in late 2012 or 2013 before they are scheduled in 2014 ,what’s the alternative to the Congress led UPA 2 Government !? ~ a BJP led NDA 2 or a completely new Third Front Alliance !? ~ anything but a Congress led UPA 3 ! seems to say the ‘C’ommon Man hit by unprecedented scale of ‘C’orruption and Inflation

Om Namah Shiva !…Happy Maha ShivRatri to All…’M’ certainly is the flavour of the Month !…Mahashivratri,Mamta Banerjee,MCX IPO,Mercator Lines and the Much Maligned Mallya of Kingfisher Airlines….

Om Namah Shiva !…. Happy Maha Shivratri to all of you… Bam Bam Bhole !… Jai Bholenath !

My Wife’s ‘Tandav’ … evidence above (her Arrangetram in 1981), and recent too… seriously!… has kept us Happily Married … and this is not an oxymoron !… we shall celebrate our silver next year in 2013

“Jai Jai Shiv Shankar, Kaata na lage Tunker !…..” Check out Rajesh Khanna & Mumtaz making this Song Immortal in ‘Aap Ki Kasam’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xApijNIJBt8 while consuming the intoxicating ‘Bhaang’ as is traditionally done on this auspicious day Celebrating the marriage  of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati

Oh ! do you know what they call ‘Bhaang’ in English !… Shiva’s Regal !

And ‘M’ is certainly the flavour of the Month…

  • Mahashivratri today…. this blog has already wished all of you above
  • Mamta Banerjee… The West Bengal CM’s Mentality and Mindset is being seriously questioned when she thrashed the character of last week’s Kolkata Rape Victim saying the lady who frequented nightclubs, had concocted the story and today after arrests made of some of the perpetrators, says the Police had mislead her !… Ofcourse Mamta is Insensitive.. but was she trying a cover up because she was approached for it !?
  • MCX IPO in the Primary market opens on Wednesday,February 22,2012… It’s a Full Offer for Sale Issue by existing Shareholders in a Price Band of Rs 860 to Rs 1032 of a FV Rs 10 Equity Share… Valuation is not really Cheap… nearly 5x Book and 18x Earnings… Consolidated Networth is just over Rs 1000 crs and a succesfull IPO will give it a Billion Dollar Market Cap… pays Dividend, but has a negative Cash Flow and has serious loss in every major Exchange it has opened overseas… Dubai, Singapore, Bahrain, Africa… the last two have yet to begin operations… will be listed only on BSE…. I am going through the 534 pages RH Prospectus and will blog seperately on MCX IPO in a day or two after also gaining some insights from the inside
  • Mercator at Rs 31 in the Secondary Market for a FV Rs 1 Share… some serious buying observed… High Net Worth Investors have been calling in to confirm this… 52 Week High of Rs 46 and Low of Rs 16…. It was my huge multibagger when I initiated heavy buying in the early 2000s at Rs 45 when it was a FV Rs 10 share… Clients rode it all the way past Rs 2000 ! inside three years !… then Congress regained Power at the Centre and the BJP linked Mercator lost Power ! …. what’s all this heavy buying about now !…. the company has made net losses in the last four quarters…… checking it out… should blog on it shortly
  • Much Maligned Mallya of Kingfisher Airlines…. he’s literally been grounded… Airline is bleeding and therefore so are all stakeholders… bank accounts are frozen… flights are being cancelled all over India… and he’s at the rough end of some real nasty tweets… quite deserving,I daresay !

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Markets may be Freaking all out but Thursday night’s Fusion Concert ‘Restless Peace’ of Zakir Hussain,Trilok Gurtu,U Srinivas,Rakesh Chaurasia & Ajay Joglekar freaked us all out

Markets may be Freaking all out but Thursday night’s Fusion Concert ‘Restless Peace’ with Zakir Hussain on the Tabla,Trilok Gurtu on Drums and what all !,U Srinivas on the Mandolin ,Rakesh Chaurasia on the Flute and Ajay Joglekar on the Harmonium and Keyboard freaked us all out

‘Restless Peace’…what an interesting name to define Fusion Music ! It was a hop,skip and jump from my office at Shanmukhananda Hall in Matunga…8 pm to 10 pm non stop on Thursday Night,December 8,2011

Trilok Gurtu on the Drums and various Percussion Adaptations was simply in his element…Flamboyant Zakir demonstrated why he remains unrivalled on the Tabla…U Srinivas was mesmerising on the mandolin … Rakesh Chaurasia,nephew of Hariprasad Chaurasia was quite good on the Flute and Ajay Joglekar complemented well on the Harmonium and Keyboard  

The Solo’s were outstanding and when Trilok entertained us with some fabulous percussion variations on a Stainless Steel Bucket filled with water or just tapping on a loud speaker in a jugalbandi with Zakir on the Tabla,we were screaming for more

…and when these Musician Maestros in sequence echoed Rakesh’s Flute on the Theme from Clint Eastwood’s “The Good,the Bad and the Ugly’ and even James Bond we were delighted…they played ‘Lotus Feet’ which is a soothing ‘Shakti ‘ Track that had us spellbound

…was with Friends…they thought I was asleep in the first hour !….I was actually in a spellbound trance !

Zakir Hussain is the elder son of the legendary Tabla Ustad the late Ustad Allah Rakah Khan….his brothers Taufiq and Fazal Qureshi too are Ustads in their own right…In fact earlier in the year had attended and interacted with Fazal at his Fusion Concert at the Club in February 2011…both Taufiq and Fazal were with me in school

Connected after ages with Ustad Fazal Qureshi & his Experiment with Fusion

Thursday, February 10th, 2011   

…then at 10.15 pm we moved from Fusion to No Fusion Food !….it had to be Madras Cafe at Matunga….the popular,actually legendary South Indian Udipi was packed at this fairly late hour on a weeknight…Vada in Sambhar followed by Raagi Masala Dosa with their in house white butter and Mulga Pudi Powder with Oil and  then a lovely Bisibele Baath…Ooooh !…perfect Meal ending with two stainless steel glasses of  perfect Kadak Filter Coffee..the second one really Kadak !..and a perfect tab…whole of Rs 289 for the four of us,with each having two dishes each atleast !

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What a Lovely and Auspicious Day !…Ganesh Chaturti,Jain Samvatsari,Shirdi Sai Baba Thursday and Son Varun’s Birthday !

What a Lovely and Auspicious Day !…Ganesh Chaturti,Jain Samvatsari,Shirdi Sai Baba Thursday and Son Varun’s Birthday !

Happy Ganesh Chaturti and Michhami Dukkadam to all….Cheers