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February 2013

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Being a foodie, I’m always game for new flavors & tastes which a cosmopolitan city like Bangalore has to offer. With lot of expats and well traveled Indians now staying in Bangalore, there are lot of world flavors which have come to our city like the Polynesian food by Trader Vic’s Mai Tai Lounge which is in Orion Mall in Rajajinagar near the World Trade Center and Sheraton hotel. I have been here earlier to taste the Mai Tai cocktails but this time I went there exclusively to try out their new Grill menu and Wok menu which they claim to have got from different Polynesian islands by gathering new recipes and blending in traditional secrets!

My wife and I went to Trader Vic’s Mai Tai Lounge in Bangalore and I settled initially for a ‘Tears of the Tiki’ cocktail which is a wonderful combination of spiced rum, orange liquor and pineapple juice in a martini glass. This refreshed me after a long hard day at work and got my taste buds jumping in anticipation over the wonderful food that we were going to have soon.

I glanced at the Grill menu initially as I wanted to taste the Grill food more than the food from the Wok. I was impressed to see that there were not only a lot of non-vegetarian varieties but also many vegetarian varieties which will ensure that even vegetarians can have a wonderful time tasting the dishes at Mai Tai lounge. I decided to let Chef Somir Das get his favorites for me so that I could get a taste of all the wonderful new recipes created exclusively for the Grill menu.

First item that we tasted was Cilantro & Scallion Prawns Skewers which were prawns skewered on a stick with bursting flavors of cilantro, garlic & scallions. Chef Somir Das explained us the ingredients very patiently and also gave us wasabi mayo to taste the prawns which really added to the flavor and spiciness!

Next we tried out the Hawaiian specialty Huli Huli chicken which is boneless chicken skewers marinated with sweet & sour pineapple juice and grilled to perfection. These were just melting in our mouth and offered a very different flavor from the usual over burnt chicken skewers. I loved this specialty chicken as a very unique flavor of the Polynesian food was embedded in this.

We also tried some vegetarian dishes like Island Corn Cakes which are sweet corn and vegetable cakes served on buttered toast and topped with refreshing mint & sour cream! Generally I prefer to stay away from vegetarian dishes when eating outside but this starter had a really refreshing and interesting twist and taste to it so I loved it and consider it one of the highlights of the Grill menu!

Having had our fill of starters, we decided to explore the New Wok menu for the main course. My wife being a fan of Chinese food liked the different varieties in the Wok menu and wondered whether we should have had some starters from Wok menu too! Just look at the expanse of dishes covered in the Wok menu too!

For non-vegetarian main course, we tried out the Chinese classic Kung Pao Chicken which was made in Trader Vic’s style and had amazing gravy with just the right amount of spices and seasoning. This tasted really with Jasmine rice which is served along with main course items in the Wok menu.

For vegetarian main course, we tried out BBQ vegetables & Tofu which had delicious Tofu pieces along with oven roasted vegetables like eggplant, onions, squash and mushrooms. This was a fitting end to a wonderful dinner at Mai Tai lounge which took us on a wonderful cuisine journey of the Polynesian islands and the oriental islands in just one beautiful evening!

I would love to come back soon to Trader Vic’s Mai Tai lounge in Orion Mall in Bangalore very soon to try out more varieties from the Wok menu in the starters segment and from the Grill menu in the main course segment! The new menus can’t be explored in just 1 or 2 dinners. You can go there for a week continuously and still not tire of new dishes to try out!

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