Carnival de Goa has been on the list for so long now. Either it was the distance or the timing, we never made it here earlier. But this time, when hubby and I had to meet a friend for lunch, we decided that Carnival de Goa it was going to be. With mommy time around the corner, I was not sure when I would find the next opportunity to travel for a nice meal considering I don’t stay anywhere close to the city.
|At the entrance - the welcoming Goan tiles|
Goan food has been a favourite for several years now, but I had not really found that one place that sold that authentic taste one finds in Goa. My search ended here. Carnival de Goa brought that exact Goan taste to Bangalore. To say that I loved the place is an understatement.
Situated close to the Gurudwara near Ulsoor lake and above Grill House, parking is not a hassle. Entering the place on the second floor, a tiled board welcomes you reminding you of old Goan homes. There is a choice of indoor or outdoor seating. Considering the busy street downstairs, we picked the indoor seating. A good choice considering there was a ‘one-man band’ singing there. With all the old English folk and country songs, the experience was definitely Goan. The ambience is good and the famous Mario Miranda- like caricature art work adorns one large wall.
I liked the menu. It wasn’t cluttered with non-Goan options. Clearly this place means serious business. The bar menu had a good choice of mocktails and cocktails. It was a day of ordering all the old favourites. We went in for a Virgin Mary, Ginger Fizz from the mocktails and a Margarita for a cocktail. The mocktails were great. You can judge a good bartender by the Virgin/Bloody Mary he makes and this one was definitely very good. If not for the pregnancy I would have gone for a second and third helping.
The Ginger Fizz had a good pungent punch to it with mint and lime, a good one if you like the flavor of ginger. The Margarita was a good and lemony mix of tequila and some fruit flavours.
I dived in for starters. The first one to go was The Goan Sausage Chilli Fry. Perfect in every way…I could cry thinking of Goa. Spicy, tangy, meaty……a total gastronomical seduction if you know what I mean. Beef Rissoles were next in line. Goans are good at cutlets and this was one of them. Though made of beef, this one had a strong smell and taste of mutton. The taste was good and can be ordered as a checklist item.
When it comes to Goan food, I am not a sucker for seafood. But at a place like Carnival de Goa, it would be unfair to leave this out. So next in line, Squid fry it was. A plateful of rava fried squids arrived. The quantity was good but what stood out was the quality. 9 out of 10 times, you get rubbery squids that you have to chew on for long. These were so fresh and absolutely soft yet crispy. Could go in for second round of this but had to hold on for the main course.
My friends let me choose the main course, so I was a little selfish and ordered all my favourites. We treated ourselves to much more food than we could handle. Pork Vidaloo with sannas (puffy idlis famous in the west coast) was first to arrive. The sannas were soft, but being a Mangalorean, I think we score higher on this. The vindaloo was extremely high on flavor and spice. With generous quantities of gravy, this dish could burn your guts if you didn’t have it with loads of sannas on rice to combat the red chilli. Two favourites in succession – Prawn Pulao and Goan Saugage Pulao. Both were great in taste and fairly good in quantity.
The only dish I had not tried that day was the Chicken Cafreal. Another dish I could travel to Goa for. Carnival de Goa had Cafreal Wings and I had to try them. An easy dish that never goes wrong. But for some reason, this was a big let down at CdG. I really wish I hadn’t ordered for it.
With a couple of lime sodas to wash down the food and fight the spice, we were through with our Goan lunch party.
|Fresh Lime Soda|
The bill worked up to a little over Rs 2000 making it completely worth it. A mention of the restrooms here. The ladies restroom had two frames photos of men in their underwear. Wonder what that was supposed to mean. But yes, the loo was clean.
Pay by : Cash and cards
Average meal for two : Rs 1000-1500 (including drinks)
Mel’s overall rating : 4.5 out of 5
Location: 8/6, II floor, Kensington Point, Ulsoor Road, Ulsoor, Bangalore
Ph: +91 7676767620