Bombay Mahal: The Promise and the Pitfall
Our sojourn up the Ganges (or as we know it, the Androscoggin)
commenced with potentially tantalizing appetizers. I awaited "a truly
remarkable" Mulligatawny soup, a samosa, and the "intricate
part of Indian cuisine" (i.e. bread). My co-colleague found her soup
dishearteningly homogenous; for the texture mimicked oatmeal and the spice
blend omitted salt. The samosa's crust was as light as a palm frond, but
the pastry's interior consisted solely of shredded potatoes and the occasional
green pea. As neither bold cumin seed nor sultry raisin could be found
within the starchy matter, the promise of Indian spice remained unfulfilled.
However, one of the flat bread offerings managed to please
our flavor-starved palates. The garlic nan far surpassed the humble but
bland "Dal Paratha" (a whole wheat bread with lentils).
The remainder of our voyage met with both success and disappointment.
Arriving amidst a parade of sizzling onions and peppers, the sunset
After reading a full paragraph concerning the Moghalai Chicken,
we salivated over the self-described "carefully chosen and soaked
overnight" chickens. However, the actual dish fell short of the fantasy.
Thus, although decent and well-spiced, this meat was not worth its thirteen
The vessel for this voyage accurately summarized our mixed
dining experience. Tapestries sporadically clung to the walls and ceilingwhile
a crystal chandelier hung awkwardly from the Styrofoam above. Sitar music,
clashing inharmoniously with the murmuring of radiators, set a mysterious
atmosphere, emphasized by elephant heads and fake flowers.
From the table in the back corner, we received laconic service which lacked the grace of Scarlet Begonias. Though Bombay Mahal tries to present the sumptuous cuisine and mystique of a far away land, something essential yet indefinable is lost in its translation.
Rating: 2 polar bears out of 4
All quotes are from Bombay Mahal's menu