Saturday, April 30, 2016

Top 5 Reasons for Purchasing the Saluto RX

When I was a college kid, I yearned for a smart street bike - one that not only offered a great fuel economy but also an array of practical features. Unfortunately, in those days (I'm talking of the period between 1997 to 2001 when I studied engineering in a remote village of Haryana), such a bike did not exist!


The good news is that India Yamaha Motor has just launched the most affordable, smart street bike in the 110 Cc segment called the Saluto RX. I was there when the much awaited launch took place, and suffice to say, it felt great to catch all the action firsthand at the Hotel Pullman, New Delhi.

Saluto RX

First things first! The new Saluto RX is an entry-level commuter bike specifically designed for the rural Indian roads. What is really admirable about this bike, apart from its extremely modest pricing of INR 46,400 (ex-showroom Delhi), is that it offers a mileage of 82 kmpl*.

[*Under standard test conditions only.]

Saluto RX is a next-generation bike - a stylish commuter motorcycle for young men in rural India. While designing this bike, the manufacturers focused on three things: superior performance, low fuel consumption, and excellent affordability.

Saluto RX

One of the salient features of this commuter bike is that it mounts a newly developed air-cooled, 4-stroke, SOHC, 110cc, 2-valve single-cylinder engine. The new engine is backed by a Blue Core Engine Development concept, which makes the combustion chamber more compact than its previous avatars in the same segment.

The Blue Core technology focuses on the following: 
  • Increasing the combustion efficiency/control
  • Increasing the cooling efficiency
  • Reducing the power loss 

But it’s not the engine alone that is worth mentioning. You'll also fall in love with the frame and alloy wheels that contribute towards the model's overall fuel efficiency. Like how? Through the comprehensive weight-reducing designs.


You'll be surprised to know that the new model weighs mere 98 kg, the lightest in its class. The Saluto RX is at least 22 kg lighter than the company's previous models in its class.


So there, still contemplating whether to purchase this bike? I'll give you top 5 reasons for purchasing the Saluto RX
  1. This is a commuter bike for young men in rural India who're looking for comfort, design, fuel efficiency, and affordability, before anything else. 

  2. Since the bike is the lightest in its class, it is extremely easy to handle. In fact, it is lightweight yet robust, with a sporty exterior body design.

  3. The all-new engine in Saluto RX renders a comfortable performance while riding, not to forget an improved fuel economy of 82 kmpl.

  4. Saluto RX is powered with a suspension of 'front - telescopic fork' and 'rear - swing arm'. The maximum torque is 8.5 Nm @ 4500 rpm.

  5. Finally, a great product makes more sense if it is affordable! Saluto RX packs the punch with its excellent pricing of INR 46,400 (ex-showroom Delhi).
Combined with Yamaha's unquenchable thirst for performance, innovation, and design, Saluto RX is slated to become a clear-cut winner in the commuter segment for bikes.

Launch of Saluto RX at Hotel Pullman on April 14, 2016

Suitable for rural Indian roads, Saluto RX will be the first endeavor from Yamaha to enter the basic segment with the promise of both quality as well as innovation. This will only complement Yamaha's network expansion plans in Tier II and Tier III Indian cities.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Top 10 Reasons to Visit Sana-di-ge

What happens when Bangalore's best coastal cuisine restaurant decides to expand northwards? Well, nothing short of sheer magic!


Last week I was invited to a bloggers table at Sana-di-ge, a newly opened coastal cuisine restaurant in the heart of Malcha Marg market, New Delhi. The property has a capacity to serve over 120 people at a given time.

Sana-di-ge

Sana-di-ge is essentially a Tulu word that refers to a brass lamp lit on auspicious occasions in the coastal belt of Karnataka.


Owned by the famous MRG Hospitality and Infrastructure group - the same name behind the Goldfinch boutique chain of hotels in Bangalore - Sana-di-ge is a seafood specialty restaurant for those who're unwilling to compromise on authentic taste and quality. It's the kind of property that has eluded Delhi for a long time. I kid you not!

In this blog post, I present the top 10 reasons to visit Sana-di-ge.
  1. The menu is absolutely flawless. From Soul Kadi (welcome drink) to crab meat soup ... from Anjal Masala Fry to Mutton Tellangana ... there were so many firsts at Sana-di-ge; you'll find it hard to contain your excitement!

    Soul Kadi

  2. Sana-di-ge has a beautiful and breathtaking decor with ample space to move around inside their premises. The restaurant is divided into four levels - basement, ground, first, and second. The slow-moving, transparent elevator at Sana-di-ge is yet another highlight; get inside the elevator to take a classic tour of one of India's finest coastal cuisine restaurant.




     






  3. Once the sun goes down, Sana-di-ge offers its patrons a chance to enjoy an intimate, alfresco dinner. If you're planning to organize a private party with your loved ones, this is the place to be!




  4. Owing to its prime location, Sana-di-ge provides a much-needed respite from the humdrum fine-dining options available in the vicinity like the Moti Mahal Delux and Amour Bistro.


  5. You'll occasionally run into a bureaucrat, a diplomat, or a think-tank who're now finding their working lunch options become much swisher, courtesy Sana-di-ge. I was lucky enough to meet noted food historian and TV presenter, Ashish Chopra, whose first book, NE Belly (2006), showcases little-known recipes from the north-east.

    Ashish Chopra - Noted Food Historian and TV Presenter

  6. Sana-di-ge serves the best, authentic summer coolers - be it Ginger Minger (made of apple puree and apple juice) or Ping Pong (made of pomegranate, raspberry, and cranberry). These mocktails taste much better than they sound actually, I can assure you that. If you're a fan of mixology, the gin-based Watermelon Bramble should be your perfect summer drink.

    Ping Pong
    Ginger Minger

  7. Want to try a unique, delectable South Indian dessert that'll leave you asking for more? Well, then don't forget to savor the Elaneer Payasam at Sana-di-ge. Served in an unorthodox coconut shell and made with a unique combination of coconut cream and pulp of tender coconut, this has got to be the best payasam served anywhere in Delhi-NCR.

    Elaneer Payasam served in a Coconut Shell
    Elaneer Payasam

  8. At Sana-di-ge, all masalas and ingredients used in cooking are imported from Mangalore. Even the ghee is homemade, which is why I believe that the culinary fare is authentic to its core.


  9. Dressed in traditional South Indian attire, the servers are alert and fully informed about the coastal cuisine at Sana-di-ge. You can also meet the Master Chefs and understand the story behind each offering.

    Server at Sana-di-ge

  10. Sana-di-ge is the only place I know where mini wooden boats are used to present the bill.
Mini wooden boats for bills
What You Must Try at Sana-di-ge

Welcome Drink

Soul Kadi
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Flavored with garlic, this Mangalorean homemade chilled sweet and sour welcome drink sets a precedent for an unforgettable fine-dining experience at Sana-di-ge.

Soups
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

You can choose from a wide array of delicious soups here. However, my favorites are listed below:

  • Crab Meat Soup
  • Vegetarian Lemon Coriander
  • Chicken Lemon Coriander
Crab Meat Soup

Salads

Papad - Masala/Plain
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Fond of popadums? If your answer is in the affirmative, then go for the scrumptious masala or plain papads, considered a specialty in South India.

Papads

Starters

Paneer Ghee Roast
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Marinated cottage cheese (paneer) roasted over the griddle with homemade ghee and spices.

Paneer Ghee Roast

Baby Corn Pepper Fry
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Baby corn tossed in three ingredients: black pepper, butter pepper garlic, and curry leaves.

Basale Pakoda
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Ponnanganni Keerai (Dwarf copper leaf) mixed with herbs, spices, and then flour, before being made into crispy fritters. Best served with chutney.

Basale Pakoda

Mushroom Pepper Fry
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Fresh mushrooms tossed in two ingredients: black pepper and curry leaves.

Bhatti Paneer
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Cottage cheese coated with gram flour, marinated with Indian spices, and then cooked in a clay oven.

Anjal Masala Fry
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

The Tulu word Anjal is used to describe an Indo-Pacific king mackerel or seer fish. This yummy dish is made of seer fish cubes tossed with homemade masalas; the end result is flavorful, not too spicy or dry.

Anjal Masala Fry

If you have room for more, go for the following delightful coastal dishes:

  • Chicken Ghee Roast
  • Prawn Butter Pepper Garlic
  • Mutton Pepper Fry
  • Clams Sukka
  • Tandoori Chaamp

Clams Sukka

Mains

Chicken Dhansak
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Boneless chicken chunks cooked in lentil gravy with Indian spices, garnished with coriander leaves.

Mutton Tellangana
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Mutton cooked in homemade onion gravy and black pepper.

You could also try the following options in mains:

  • Vegetable Gassi
  • Falguni Subzi
  • Prawn Gassi

Coastal Breads

Neer Dosa
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

This utterly thin pan cake is prepared from rice batter, and is a popular delicacy from Tulu Nadu region in Karnataka.

Neer Dosa

Kerala Parantha
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

If you're not sure which coastal bread to choose from, simply order this multi-layered pan fried Indian bread that'll surprise you with its soft texture and crispiness.

Me at Sana-di-ge

Finally, Sana-di-ge is not just a revered Bangalore establishment but a cozy fine-dining restaurant that truly understands the pulse of a Delhi foodie.

Sanadige Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 

Monday, April 25, 2016

Acer Predator Breaks Barriers between People and Technology

A few days ago I received a media invite to attend the unveiling of Acer's latest innovation in gaming technology called the PredatorThis new product is an endeavor from the computing giant to break barriers between people and technology.


I was informed that the media briefing would be addressed by none other than, Chandrahas Panigrahi, Senior Director, Consumer Business at Acer India

Being an avid gamer myself, I always look for opportunities like these - where not only can I get to see the new product in action (more often than not before anyone else does!) but also explore its best features, simultaneously. I also enjoy interviewing the engineering and design teams behind the innovation. 

So there I was, at The Ashok, one of the best 5-Star Hotels in Delhi, on a hot, summery afternoon of April 20 to see what the buzz was all about!

Like me, even you'll be wondering, why the name Predator?

Acer named this new line of gaming products after a fierce hunter – the Predator.

Panigrahi says,
We design gear for fierce gamers – members of what we call the Predator tribe. Every member of our tribe has the soul of a fierce hunter, a predator. We bear the mark of our deadly mission. Our ancestors painted their bodies with dirt and blood to strike fear into the hearts of their enemies and rally comrades to battle. We draw inspiration from these marks of power. The mark of the predator tribe is a symbol of loyalty, power and ferocity. Use it wisely. Embolden your tribe and demoralize the enemy. Conquer New Worlds.

The Predator 15 / 17 has a lot of great features to boast of, like the following:

Predator FrostCore

Most PC manufacturers these days are dealt with the question of how to remove or dissipate the heat generated by components when in use. In case of overclocking, the issue of heating increases several folds.

The increased heating can potentially damage your PC or make it unstable. Many computers may abruptly shut down or even refuse to operate if they get overheated.

Acer comes up with a fitting solution to this issue.

The swappable fan module in Predator provides the option to greatly enhance the cooling performance. You can replace the optical disk drive (ODD) with the module when your operating system is dealing with heavy loading.

If you're hoping to keep the performance up while the heat down, the Predator FrostCore is probably your best bet. Enjoy intense, uninterrupted gaming sessions without having to worry about heating anymore.


Predator DustDefender

Another cool, complementing feature in the all-new Predator is the DustDefender.

Predator DustDefender

Made out of lighter but stronger metal, Predator DustDefender packs a punch with the help of an AeroBlade fan that runs at an extremely high speed to improve heat dissipation from high-performance components. This not only helps in extending your PC's life cycle but also enhances usability for uninterrupted fun.

CoolBoost Technology

Using CoolBoost technology, Acer has managed to deliver 18% faster fan speed and 10% lower CPU/GPU temperature via its exclusive Turbo Mode. This innovative feature enables you to manually control the cooling process during heavy usage.


Killer DoubleShot™ Pro

If you're looking for the ultimate high-speed attack, Acer introduces a new feature called the Killer DoubleShot™ Pro that allows your Ethernet and Wifi to work together. The Killer Network Manger determines the attributes of each link and decides which apps should run on which connection.

Killer DoubleShot Pro

PredatorSense and Predator ProZone

The entertainment quotient is upped by several notches via an intelligent gaming keyboard built with PredatorSense and Predator ProZone.

Custom-made for gaming enthusiasts, PredatorSense has some amazing features like keyboard macro profiles for your favorite games. It also provides real-time information (like CPU temperature, system temperature, CPU fan speed, and system fan speed) and adjustable lighting configurations.

PredatorSense

Predator ProZone includes four customizable backlight zones and programmable macro profiles that you can share with your team. To ensure that gamers have every bit of control they truly deserve, Predator ProZone includes a number pad and dedicated macro buttons.

The customized LED backlit keyboard is divided into four lighting zones and programmable keys. Each Hotkey Profile can provide corresponding keyboard backlight setting for a specific game. The customizable “P” is a shortcut key that renders an efficient way to switch hotkey groups.

Predator ProZone

Predator renders a realistic visual experience for hardcore gamers. With incredibly high resolution and outstanding picture quality, you can enjoy every bit of dazzling detail and enhanced imagery without having to worry about the battery life.

Accessories

Finally, if you are in the mood to accessorize your machine, go for the Predator Gaming Mouse, Predator Gaming Mouse Pad, Predator Gaming Headset, and Predator Gaming Utility Backpack.

Predator Gaming Mouse

With the launch of Predator, it seems that Acer has unleashed a new gaming revolution, and it now remains to be seen how the market will respond to this change.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

My Gastronomical Affair with Farzi Cafe Continues

My gastronomical affair with Farzi Cafe started in the month of February this year when I reviewed their newly opened outlet in Connaught Place, New Delhi. The modern Indian bistro wooed me by creating an ultimate gastronomic illusion with its unparalleled cuisine. Each dish at Farzi Cafe has a classic story to tell, and let me just say that one outing was never going to be enough!

So there I was, amid the scorching summer heat of March, to get 'Farzified' yet again; this time around though, in the heart of DLF CyberHub Gurgaon, where Massive Restaurants Private Limited launched their very first Farzi Cafe.


Brainchild of one of the most well-known names in the F&B business, Zorawar Kalra (son of famous restaurateur Jiggs Kalra), the Farzi Cafe opened to the sassy crowd of Gurgaon in July 2014. As you can imagine from the name, Farzi Cafe presents the Indian cuisine in a brand new avatar altogether. Come, see in full view a perfect amalgamation of culinary art with modern presentations and cooking techniques like the molecular gastronomy.

Me with other food bloggers at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

Covering an overall area of 3750 square feet, the Gurgaon outlet provides a cover of 96, which can be further extended up to 120 by rearranging the furniture. To absorb the guests into the greatest culinary experience ever, the bistro is equipped with best in class seating with 89 chairs (including 10 bar stools and 20 couch seats) and 34 tables (including 1 two-seater, 21 four-seater, 1 six-seater, and 1 eight-seater).

Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

The kitchen is in the capable hands of Head Chef Gaurav Raghuvanshi, who by a strange coincidence is also responsible for designing the elaborate menu at Zorawar’s other property, Made in Punjab. According to Chef Gaurav, Farzi Cafe Gurgaon will be long remembered as a pioneer in redefining the Indian Bistronomie concept, especially in the context of the fine/casual dining.

Kitchen at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

The bistro leverages modern elements of molecular gastronomy and combines the same with contemporary presentation styles to seamlessly create Global favorites from Indian classics.

Prawn Chettinad at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

All chefs at Farzi Cafe are trained to create a balanced mix of traditional Indian delicacies using modern Western culinary styles, thus creating a unique gastronomic experience for patrons.

Delhi Belly Tikka at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

Indian culinary traditions are unarguably one of the oldest in the world right now, and Farzi Cafe aims to bring the same Indian cuisine back in vogue.

Decor at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

A lot can be said about the chic, eccentric decor of Farzi Cafe. Styled akin to a European Bistro with strong Indian influences, the outlet is hailed for its faux grass walls and wood/glass paneled doors cum windows. The best part is that the seating space can be easily divided into two for an absolute bistronomie experience.

Custom built concert stage for live performances at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

With wood flooring and a custom built concert stage for live performances, Farzi Cafe is defining class in every sense of the word. The bistro also boasts of one of the longest bars in Gurgaon.

Bar Area at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon
Bar Area at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon
Bar Area at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

Leveraging the latest in technology along with the finest equipment, Farzi Cafe uses elements such as centrifuge, distillers, vacuum evaporation, compress cooking, and other methods for showcasing the next level of innovation.

Rasmalai with Carrot Flower at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

Targeted towards both the younger lot as well as the gourmet diners, Farzi Cafe will take you on a mystical culinary experience like the one you saw in Alice in Wonderland Tea Party. Merely looking at the culinary creations and quirky presentations that Farzi Cafe is known to offer, you're bound to draw such comparisons.

Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

The menu at Farzi Cafe has been designed after years of research and months of extensive food trials and sampling. The curiosity and glamour with which each offering is presented will tantalize your five senses at once.

Rajasthani Chaat at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

The menu is a seasonal spread. Every dish is prepared using fresh ingredients, sourced locally from Delhi-NCR. The bistro also imports high-quality gourmet ingredients such as pork, spare ribs, lamb, tenderloin, salmon, etc.

Tempura Fried Prawns at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

To say that the menu is quirky will be an understatement! With signature dishes like the Posh Maggi or the Gupta Burger, you cannot help but feel a deep sense of nostalgia. My favorite dish was the popular Chicken Tikka Masala served in a London style telephone booth.

Chicken Tikka Masala served in a London style telephone booth

If you're aiming for the highest level of dining experience, Farzi Cafe impresses with its relentless innovation, style, and panache - not just with its cuisine alone but also with its vast array of signature beverages.

Sushriit, Prateek, and Me at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

Indulgent moments at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon allowed me to experience the pinnacle of modern Indian hospitality with all the quirkiness of its cuisine. Upping the cool quotient and breaking stereotypes, Farzi Cafe offers an irresistibly playful, high-energy ambiance.

Food Bloggers at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

Before I sign-off, here are my Top Recommendations at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon.

Welcome Shot/Amuse-bouche

Misti Dahi (Complimentary)
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Misti Dahi

Liquor

Kahlua (INR 225)
[My Rating: 3 out of 5]

Kahlua

Farzi Style

Santa-Bunta (INR 375)
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Santa-Bunta

Farzi Apple Foamintini (INR 395)
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Farzi Apple Foamintini

Farzi Shooters

Khatam (INR 325)
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Farzi Shoonya

Farzi OK (INR 195)
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Farzi OK

Classic Cocktails

Pina Colada (INR 375)
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Pina Colada

Farzi Burgers and Buns

Gupta Burger (INR 355)
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Gupta Burger

Butter Chicken Bun (INR 345)
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Butter Chicken Bun

Lamb Burger
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Lamb Burger

Tapas Non-Vegetarian Starters

Chilly Duck Samosa with Plum Chutney (INR 310)
[My Rating: 3 out of 5]

Amritsari Fish N Chips with Desi Ghee Hollandaise (INR 325)
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Amritsari Fish N Chips with Desi Ghee Hollandaise

Chicken 65 Lollipop with Egg Drops and Tomato Chutney (INR 345)
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Chicken 65 Lollipop with Egg Drops and Tomato Chutney

Keema Kulcha (INR 235)
[My Rating: 4 out of 5]

Keema Kulcha

Meetha

Parle G Cheesecake made with milk custard and cookie dough essence (INR 275)
[My Rating: 5 out of 5]

Parle G Cheesecake at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon
Parle G Cheesecake at Farzi Cafe Gurgaon

I just cannot wait to visit the modern-day bistro again!

Farzi Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato