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The oriental experience: Chew – Pan Asia Cafe

Food that is not Indianised.

Chew-4 Courtesy: Aditi Malewar
By Aditi Malewar and Surbhi Gupta
Aditi: I am in Chew – Pan Asian Cafe. It is in M block, outer circle, hurry up!

Surbhi: Okay, I am coming.

(After entering the restaurant and taking the place)

Surbhi: Wow, this place is bright yet it’s sutble. Look at the live kitchen on the right. It looks so exciting.

Aditi: Yes, and did you notice the jars of spices lined up? I like the concept. The ambiance is so alive here. Look at these off beat color combinations.

Surbhi: And the moment you enter, hot fresh aroma of steamed dumplings fill you up!

Aditi: I am very hungry, let’s order something.

Surbhi: Oh my God! Look at those swinging chairs, such a cool concept. We are shifting there. I just hope I don’t fall off.

Aditi: Oh come on! This is not a playground and you are not a kid, Surbhi!

Surbhi: Look at this wall, dude! I want to read all that’s written here. “All you need is love, but a little chocolate” Hahaha! Reminds me of all those social media memes.

3 Courtesy: Surbhi Gupta

Aditi: Check out this one. “Enjoy long romantic walks to the fridge” Hahaha! So cool. Sums up my love for food.

Surbhi: Well, this line explains that better – “There is no love sincere than the love of food”. I had such a stereotypical idea of an Asian restaurant of the ambiance being dull and the music being slow. But this ain’t anywhere close to it.

Aditi: Lady it is not a restaurant, it is a cafe. Probably that changes the whole setting. Oh wow! This has struck a cord with my taste buds. Let’s order, please! I’m starving.

Surbhi: Hahaha! Okay so, I am not really an Asian food lover but I would love to try. So, what do they have? Dumplings are momos, right?

Aditi: Yep they are momos. The only difference being that the local momos offer a type of dumplings, whereas here you will get a variety of traditional dumplings. Also there are two types of momos, regular and sparkle. You can try them both. Personally I love sparkle momos it is lighter and more juicy. Surbhi, my friend, let me make you have some real Asian food.

Preparation of Sparkle Dumplings:

Surbhi: Okay, let me see the menu. Ummm, Spinach and Water Chestnut dumplings and Green, Corn and Water Chestnut dumplings? And to drink I’ll have berry blast. I really need considering the heat.

Aditi: I love the menu too, it’s so colorful like the cafe.

Surbhi: Yes, it’s adding to the chirpiness of the place.

Aditi: Did you notice the chef made on the pages? it’s going with their logo and it’s quiet an elaborate menu, so many options to choose from.

Surbhi: Hungry person, do you want to eat up the menu or you want to order something?

Aditi: Hahaha, okay! I’ll have Steamed Crystal Prawn dumplings and Crystal Chicken dumpling. That’s some non-vegetarian food for me.

1.1 Courtesy: Surbhi Gupta

(While eating the dumplings)

Surbhi: They are good. I’m not really a spinach person but they are actually tasty. Try to eat them with these chopsticks, it’s really fun. By the way, the food is spot on. You really can’t compare them with the momos we have had till now. Dude, it actually feels like I’m having authentic Chinese food and not the Indianized versions we have made. How is your food?

Aditi: Surbhi, these prawn dim sums are extraordinary! The prawns are cooked just about average but being a sparkle dumpling is just enhancing the taste. But these chicken dim sums are average. Anyways how is your drink?

Surbhi: Berry blast? It’s really nice. I’m ordering more food. Ummm, crispy lotus stems and crystal seasonal greens and corn dumpling.

Aditi: Crispy Lotus stems? I wonder how they taste like.

(More food comes)

Surbhi: Wow! These lotus stems are amazing! I really did not think they would be so tasty.

Aditi: Yaa, they are good, has a good touch of sweetness to it. However, these dumplings are average.

Surbhi: You do not like sweet food right. But I read somewhere that Pan Asian food usually has a pinch of sweetness to it. I want to pamper my sweet tooth, I’ll order some dessert. Aaa, let’s have choco lava and….mangofee pie? That sounds interesting. Argh! Why is the staff not attentive here? We have to wait every time to order.

Aditi: Never mind, as long as the food is tasty. But Choco lava? I’ve not really seen chocolate based desserts in Asian restaurants. I hope it’s good.

(The dessert comes)

collage Courtesy: Aditi Malewar

Surbhi: They both look gorgeous! Let me taste. Mmmm, they are super tasty. I am not sharing them with you, Aditi.

Aditi: You better do. Mmmmm, the choco lava is delicious. How does mangofee pie taste?

Surbhi: I have not had something like mangofee pie before. It’s one of the best mango desserts I’ve had, the combination of toffee and mango is unique. Taste it!

Aditi: Mmmm, the mango pieces add to the experience. I really like this place!

Surbhi: Well, I think it’s that kind of place which caters to all types of people and gatherings. If you want to hang out for a lunch with a friend, like we are, family dinner,  if the ladies want to do a kitty party or in fact, even if the corporates could meet up for a business meeting here.

Aditi: No doubt on that bro, but, it can’t be a regular hang out place at least for us, it’s expensive. A regular meal would at least cost us 1500 here.

Surbhi: You’re right. It’s a good place to splurge on once in a while, but definitely worth coming again.

Aditi: It sure is!

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