Mumbai food: This budget-friendly eatery in Vashi is a must-visit for chicken lovers
Offering a variety of chicken cuts and marinades, a new VFM no-frills takeaway in Vashi is a godsend for those who can't get enough of it
We spotted a new eatery in the busy commercial hub of Sector 17, Vashi, and the signboard got our attention immediately — Nothing But Chicken, it boldly announced, Now Open. Mental note to self — must check this place out. Soon enough, we find ourselves at the new eatery one afternoon. With just four high chairs, the place is more a take-away, but we choose to have our working lunch at Nothing But Chicken (NBC).
The décor is cheery and functional with doodles of smiling hens giving us company. We also note signage about the restaurant being Halal & ISO 22000 compliant, and most importantly for us, that the meat is fresh, not frozen.
Chicken seekh kabab
Chicken all the way
At the entrance, NBC sports a huge refrigerated display that has raw, pre-cut and in some cases, pre-marinated chicken portions. You can choose from a variety of sausages — jalapeno and cheese, cocktail, classic salami to name a few — or you could buy pre-marinated chicken, grill it yourself and enjoy it in the comfort of your home. Options include chimichuri, peri-peri, Greek yogurt and pepper, cheesy garlic breast among others.
The second display counter has all the ready-to-eat goodies — you can choose from a variety of sandwiches and salads or simply opt for a pilaf or chicken vada pow, desi burger, chicken seekh pow or chicken kheema pow. We order the chicken vada pow (`65), grilled chicken wrap (`105), two pieces of galouti seekh kabab (`34), three pieces of classic seekh kabab (`48), tandoori tangdi (`102) and chicken mayo roll (`105). We realise much later that they billed us for a classic salad (`82), which we were not served. When we point it out to the staff the following day, they are polite and refund the amount and the applicable taxes, too.
Chicken vada pow
Back to our chicken encounter. The order is served one item at a time, heated in front of us in a microwave oven. The presentation is fuss-free and practical. The wrap, kababs and tandoori tangdi are so hot, they are steaming right to the very last bite.
Vada pav vs burger
We are informed that the lone difference between a chicken vada pow and a desi burger is the flavour and spices of the patty.
The former comes served with a chicken patty in a brown bread pav with cheese dip and schezwan sauce. It is tasty, but since the dish is named after the popular Mumbai snack, we would have preferred the traditional chutneys to go with it. That, we feel, could have been the differentiating element between the desi burger and the chicken vada pow. The patty is mildly spiced and despite being reheated, hasn’t become tough. This, in fact, is true for everything we order.
The tandoori tangdi is well marinated with the classic smoky taste, cooked just right so it is tender. The chicken mayo roll is too bland and sour for our taste. The galouti seekh kabab and the classic seekh kabab taste different, in a good way — the chicken in both offerings is tender and flavourful.
The grilled chicken wrap is a whole wheat roti with a masala chicken filling. It has the right balance of spice and is quite filling. By now, we need something to quench our thirst; NBC stocks regular soft drinks and we wash down our meal with a couple of fresh fruit juices on offer. With its reasonably priced, no-frills menu, NBC is ideal for a quick, VFM meal, or to help you cut down your chicken preparation time at home. With courteous staff, they seem to have their act in order. However, given their location, they are likely to face stiff competition from their F&B neighbours.
Time 9 am to 11.30 pm
At Sector 17, Shiv Center, Next to Arneja Corner, Vashi, Navi Mumbai.
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