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  • Birdsong Cafe Bandra – The first and only Organic food restaurant in Mumbai

    Published on May 7, 2014

    How safe and nutritious is the food we are consuming?

    The trend is reversing. As we gain more knowledge we are going back towards nature. All the chemicals and artificial additives to food are causing different kinds of damage to our health and environment. Various lifestyle diseases like diabetes, AMBARcancer, Asthma, Alzhiemers and many others were not so prevalent a few decades back when most of the food available was only organic.

    What is organic food? Organic food is, food grown without the use of any chemical pesticides or fertilisers, organic foods are also processed without using irradiation, industrial solvents, or chemical food additives.

    Somewhere in 2013 Jennifer Mallick and Ashish Madan decided that an organic food restaurant is required to let the people, who are health conscious and aspire for pure organic food. Dr. Kavita Mukhi a counsellor in nutrition and healthy living who champions the cause of organic food, was brought in a consultant and the restaurant was setup complete with its own bakery, Vintage interiors and furniture with modern WiFi.

    To run the restaurant the next challenge was to find a man who has the passion and shares the same thoughts to serve pure organic food to its customers. Mr. Ambar Samtani was selected after extensive search.

    Mr. Ambar Samtani is a man, who has had a childhood love affair with food. He loved experimenting with food and even burnt his fingers and food many times but his interest in innovating in food only grew stronger. He went to Switzerland for a three year course in hotel management. His talents were spotted by Falcon Hotel a 102 year old hotel in Switzerland and was offered a job there, Mr. Ambar Samtani showed his talents there and soon grew in position there. Later he came back to India and worked with various celebrities, hotels and restaurants. He now has 15 years of experience behind him and is enjoying every moment at Birdsong Cafe.

    Birdsong cafe is situated in the heart of Bandra on Hill Road, Behind A1 Bakery and Kobe Sizzlers. The restaurant has wide arched windows and a small waiting area outside the restaurant and antique type wooden furniture, unfinished walls, unpainted walls and cement flooring all speak about the organic or the non use of Chemicals anywhere in the restaurant including the washroom. The walls are coated with cement and hand drawings and menus are handwritten with charcoal or white chalk.

    The menu was not very confusing and the prices were very reasonable considering the facts that organic food material is expensive, the restaurant ambiance and the Birdsong foodlocality of Bandra West. No wonder the restaurant was almost full even at 6 pm in the evening and there was waiting by 8 PM.

    We first ordered mutton soup, which was very tasty and had crispy bread crumbs it was not spicy yet delicious. We then ordered a thin crust chunky lamb pizza with cheese topping and Bruchetta . Both were awesome The Pzza crust was made of organic whole wheat and the Bruchetta consisted of zucchini and bellpepper prepared in an exotic in-house sauce on brown bread and grilled to perfection.

     

    We then ordered chicken in honey and mustard sauce and were pleasantly surprised to find it complimented with organic veggies including mashed potatoes,  carrots, mushrooms and boiled Desi egg. The chicken was desi chicken and not broiler chicken, keeping with the tradition of Organic food.

    We also ordered stuffed chicken breast on a bed of conscous and found it to be good as well.

    We spoke the the restaurant Chef cum manager  Mr. Ambar Samtani, and he explained more about organic food and its health benefits. The presence of chemicals and artificial additives in normal food makes it slightly toxic and over long periods of time it affects our health. He is proud that he is the first person in Mumbai and only second in India to be serving pure organic food. The Veggies, meats, chicken, eggs, Salt, water, oils, spices and all other ingredients are pure and certified organic and sourced from organic farmers only. The oils used is safflower oil or olive oil. He said that if organic veggies are not available, he does not buy any veggies from the local market, he prefers not to serve them.

    We were invited to have a look at the kitchen and we saw a neat and clean kitchen where hygiene was a priority and cleanliness a norm.

    Birdsong is shortly adding a specialised section for wine connoisseurs where many types of exotic organic wines will be made available.

    Mr. Ambar Samtani has specialised in innovating with Vodka, he has created 74 different types of Vodka flavours like ‘Pan’ Gulkand, Supari, Ginger, Orange peel, and many others some for having neat and others for use in cooking. He specialises in party catering.

    Bottom line – If you are aware of the health benefits of organic food and want to enjoy it in good ambiance at a restaurant then Birdsong is the place to look for. The food portions appear small and less filling but the same have been designed as per the diet requirement by Dr. Kavita Mukhi and the nutrition has been already been calculated as per your requirement. It is the less use of fatty oils and thick and rich gravy that makes you feel less full. The added benefit is a good night sleep.

    Finally don’t forget to take home a few of the exotic cakes or breads prepared in the inhouse bakery.

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