For quite a while, there wasn't a good restaurant for continental food on the busy commercial SD-Road-stretch. Sure, Riviera
did a fine pasta, but the culinary treats of the area were mainly restricted to biryani, thalis
and Chinese food. And then there was Pickles. This place was such a hit from Day One, it's obvious this was exactly what foodies within a 5km radius were waiting for.
A 24-hour coffee shop with bright, cheery interiors, and nifty matte-steel accessories, Pickles is a stylish little joint that overlooks the muted traffic on the road through huge French windows. This is a place that's perpetually crowded. With cinema-goers on their way to Sangeet, families on a weekend jaunt and night birds after an evening at Outswinger
The midnight buffet (Rs. 199 + taxes, 11pm-2:30am) is a big hit with diners - it has a soup, 3-4 salads, chicken/mutton/veg biryani, mirchi ka salan, raita, 3-4 curries, sambar, rice, curd, a couple of sweets and ice cream, and basically offers more than you should be eating at that hour, really. The breakfast (Rs. 115 + taxes) and lunch (Rs. 199 + taxes) buffets are popular, too, but the a la carte
is where you'll find the best dishes at Pickles.
Pickles has Italian, Indian, Lebanese, Thai, Chinese, American and Mexican cuisine. But instead of flooding you with too much choice, all these diverse flavors have been neatly packed into pretty scrumptious morsels.
The Pita-bread Sandwich is a must-try. Stuffed with crisp lettuce and chicken or veggies in a teriyaki-like sauce, and served with hummus
, this is a light yet fully satisfying meal. As is the Nachos Platter, served with fresh salsa and mayo. Keep away from the Italian Pinwheel, it disappoints. But do try the Chicken Strumberg Steak or the Jumbo Shrimp Platter.
There's also chaat and kaati rolls, if you want to go desi
. Or try the North-Indian meal combo, with a kadai curry, rotis and subzi - it can really fill you up. Drinks are served until 11:30pm, and Pickles has a selection of Zodiac mocktails if you believe in that sort of thing. Try the fruit-punch, though - it's very good.
For dessert, try the chocolate cake or the rum-n-raisin mousse, which is fairly floating in rum. The cheesecakes aren't bad, but not everyone can make a cheesecake like it should be.
Expect good service, decent value-for-money and some interesting variations from the usual. And in case you're wondering about the name, there's a tray of jars with assorted pickles, like tamarind, ginger, sweet lime, chilli, garlic and many others you've not heard of before. Ask for a sample, and taste as many as you can. Even something old and familiar in a completely new surrounding can tingle the taste-buds.