Sherman's Food Adventures: Mumbaiyaa


Sometimes, food gets repetitive.  Yah it is definitely #firstworldproblems and given the economic climate at the moment, the fact I get to eat delicious food is a blessing in itself.  So take what I'm saying in context.  I'm always looking for interesting eats and when I try another new Indian restaurant, the food can be absolutely wonderful, but it can be the same-o same-o.  However, when we checked out Mumbaiyaa out on Hastings in Burnaby, there were signs that it would be different.  First of all, it is vegetarian and primarily a chaat house.  Second, they are located in Burnaby!  In my hood!  So I was pretty excited for my visit.

Looking over the menu, the predominant items were the Indian Pav (butter rolls).  The Butter Vada Pav featured spicy and soft potato that was battered and fried until golden brown.  I found the layers of texture appealing with pillowy soft buns with a crispy potato patty in between with delicate potato inside.  Then you had the intoxicating flavours of garlic and then green chutney.  This was so flavourful and aromatic that you didn't notice there was no meat!

Now that was good, but the real star was the Cheese Burst Vada Pav.  This was essentially a butter vada pav with the addition of a cheesy filling in between the layers of spicy garlic potato within the crispy batter.  The same delicious green chutney was there as well.  As much as this was almost the same as the butter vada pav, this was more robust with the ooey gooey cheese and also it somewhat cooled the spice to a degree.  I could eat a tonne of these!

Looking very similar to the butter vada pav, the Thecha Vada Pav was different for one particular detail - lots of green chilies and cilantro.  This made the whole thing very green and remarkably unique in flavour.  Much more spice and also very green-tasting with the cilantro and also the green chutney.  For me, it was still all about the cheese vada pav for me as it was more subtle.

Beyond the cheese vada pav, our next favourite item was the Ulta Vada Pav.  This was huge bun was stuffed full of spicy potato masala and then coated with besan batter.  This was deep-fried until golden brown and crispy.  Oh this was absolutely delicious and had the same qualities of the previous vada pavs, but with the crunch on the outside and all of the soft textures on the inside.  This was plenty spicy as well.

Other than vada pavs, we had both the Pani Puri and Sev Puri.  With the former, the hollow crispy shells were filled with tender potatoes, a pomegranate seed and some spicy tangy water and sweet chutney.  A nice crispy one-biter that packed a lot of flavour.  As for the latter, we found a crispy puri topped with potatoes, onions, tomatoes and chutneys with thin gram flour noodles on top.  Also a one-biter, but maybe with a spoon or fork.  Flavours were a bit more complex here due to the sharp onion and fresh tomatoes.  More crispiness with this one.

Moving onto something a bit different, but featuring a side of fluffy baked kulcha, the Chhole Kulcha featured a chick pea curry that had a surprising meatiness and depth.  Slightly sweet and almost smoky with spiciness that continued to elevate and really hits at the end.  For me, the super soft kulcha was the best part as it was light as a cloud and soaked up the delicious and spicy curry like it was supposed to.

Featuring 3 soft buttered pav, the Pav Bhaji was another delicious curry that was the beneficiary of really soft bread. The cooked-down vegetables were spicy and slightly sweet with plenty of umaminess.  The curry was smooth and and impactful.  It could've been fine with naan or even rice, but the addictively soft buns complimented the curry much like the chhole kulcha.  Eating the buns by themselves would've been awesome, but pair it with a tasty curry, well that makes it more awesome!

Our one rice dish was the Tawa Pulao with basmati, onions, tomatoes, potatoes, bell peppers, peas, pav bhaji masala and coriander leaves.  This was a fully-loaded rice that was rather saucy.  Lots of flavour from the sweet onions and bell peppers.  There was spice to this and also plenty of impact from the coriander.   Since the rice was already cooked, the texture was a bit softer.

As for the sweets, we had an Oreo Milkshake during the meal and Falooda for dessert (Rabdi & Rose).  The milkshake was creamy and smooth being a drinkable viscosity.  It was sweet, but not overwhelmingly so.  As for the falooda, they were sweet, yet balanced.  Lots of bouncy vermicelli hidden within the milky concoction with ice cream on top.  At the end of our meal, I was really glad that we made it out to Mumbaiyaa.  Nice to try some new things and also some familiar ones.  What a nice addition to the neighbourhood as we do not have anything like it nearby.  The stuff is so tasty and fulfilling, you won't miss the meat!

*All food and beverages were complimentary for this blog post*

The Good:
- Lots of flavour and spiciness
- Reasonable pricing
- Super nice owner

The Bad:
- I mean, if you want meat, but for me I didn't miss it
- A little carb heavy, but it is vegetarian though


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