Food tasting sessions have become more or less daily routine for me these days. However when Aishwarya of Thinkquisitive invited over for this one I was pleasantly surprised. For a start the restaurant hadn’t opened its doors for the public yet. This was actually going to be a opportunity of the outlet to showcase the dishes & receive feedback before serving it to the public. I was excited since I would get to taste the food before anyone tried them ( somehow recommendations / reviews by others have ruined my experience of other outlets by increasing expectations). The promotions by “My Big Fat Belly” on Facebook had increased the anticipation, & I was pretty charged up to be honest.
Located bang at the paddapukur crossing of Sarat Bose Road, “My Big Fat Belly” stands where the erstwhile ‘The Little Donkey’ used to be. Headed by Aakarsh Bhargava , who has been In the food industry for quite sometime now, ‘My Big Fat Belly’ boasts of an impressive selection of staff handpicked by the ‘Chief Belly Banger’ as he likes to call himself. The staffs have been trained well, as is evident from their understanding of the menu, inspite of the fact that it has been finalised recently. The décor too has been improvised in house. The quirky colour tones , with filament lamps & wood plank finish tables, gives the whole place a rustic feel. The most interesting part was use of windows & glass panes in the ceiling , & I have been told the glass panes will be used for some very interesting things in the future 😉 .
As for the foodies, Rajdeep Bhattacharjee, Devpurna Talapatra, Archya Sengupta & myself were the ones invited for the tasting of the items.
My Big Fat Belly hopes to disrupt the current food scene of Kolkata. How much it can deliver on the promise was to be found out as the dishes started arriving from the kitchen.
I can’t believe I am writing this, but the water served does need a special mention. Not only regular/packaged drinking water, you get to choose from some cool infused water as well. There are two variants.
The mint & cucumber one has a very subtle hint of the flavours. I so wanted it to have a citrus hint. Just a dash of lemon peels would have been so much better!
Apple & cinnamon one has a stronger taste of the spice. The fragrance of apple can be surely increased by using slices of green apples in place of ripe ones.
Not content with the infused water, we ordered some drinks. All the drinks were beautifully garnished, tastes varied.
A predominantly orange drink with loads of cinnamon giving it the unique taste. In fact it’s garnished with a smoking cinnamon stick, affecting the overall aroma. The drink is tangy & likeable.
Mint Mojito flavoured with some lime, coloured with curacao & spiked with the inimitably tanginess of redbull. The garnished look interesting with lemon slice, cucumber slice & olives, not to mention the inverted can of redbull. This sweet & tangy drink is sure to give you a kick if not the wings.
This one’s a milkshake with loads of ice cream & strawberry syrup. Highly sweet, & amply pinkish to be a perfectly ladies’ drink.
Oreo & KitKat Shake:
I think the name’s enough. You can’t just go wrong with this combination. Served in a mason jar & garnished with KitKat & Oreo, this one again was a delight to have.
This one was the most interesting of all. The base was of lemon mint Mojito, while a dash of in-house masala added to it. The masala is very much like the soda shikanji masala. To top it off an ice gola coloured with curacao was place on the glass. A drink can look exciting, but surely not this much. The taste was good too.
A plethora of starters awaited us. In fact the ‘todays menu’ was quite intimidating for me. Still tried to taste as much as I could.
Gooey Cheese cigars served with Texan Mayo & Strawberry Chilly Dip:
Mmmmmmmmm…. & I am not even talking about the cigars. The Texan mayo prepared in house was amazing. But the Strawberry chilly dip just stole the show. Hot & sweet, & amply strawberry-ish this one went so good with the cigars. Hats off to the chef for thinking of this combination. The cigars themselves were crispy on the outside & with right amount of consistency inside.
Grilled BFB Chicken wings in Ghost Sauce:
Chicken wings? A familiar name for sure. But this is way different from all the sweet/ mildly hot ones you might have had earlier. The grilled wings were succulent & juicy. What I wasn’t expecting was the hotness of the sauce. Initially it felt mild, but left an aftertaste on the lips which cried for some sweet drink. As per Aakarsh, the owner, it’s still the mild one, they are going to serve extra hot variant for upcoming chicken wings challenge which will have 10 times the hotness. God save the contestants! But if you are used to hot & spicy chicken preparations, you are definitely going to love these.
BFB Fish & Chips with Mustard Mayo & Tartar Dip:
What I really liked about the dish was again the dip, not that the fish wasn’t upto the mark. Trust me the fish was perfect. But the dips were mayo based, yet so dissimilar. The tartar one is basically the regular western dip you get anywhere. But the mustard mayo does bring to you the Kolkatan touch of fish fry with kasundi. It felt to me like the west meets the west. Another great thing about the dish is, although it contains three pieces, you can order it on piece basis for takeaways.
Russian Mafia Sandwich:
This should be the standard of sandwiches ! Tastewise & sizewise! It’s the same bread that some chains use the name ‘sub’ for, though it’s not a footlong submarine. The inside is overloaded with Chicken Chunks, Chicken Salami, Boiled Eggs, along with regular Garlic Aioli, Coleslaw salad & ample blended Cheddar. In fact the stuffing was overflowing from inside the sandwich. Just like you see in the advertisements (but don’t get after you order without anything extra). Here it isn’t like that, you get what you think you’ll get! Seriously guys, great deliverance. As far the taste, I’ve already mentioned the ingredients, isn’t it enough?
This is one thing that BFB is betting on. So noway could we let this chance of having them go.
This is surely going to be their most popular burger (until they start introducing more greasy burgers for the challenges). A big sized bun hides between it’s halves a chicken patty, some lettuce & tomatoes & a generous amount of cheddar blend. But it’s not the juicy patty that the burger derives its name from. Also present is a sunny side up egg, which sure is to run down the sides of the burger as you attempt to grab a bite ( it already started dripping as we were clicking pictures). The burger is garnished with some crispy onion rings. It was an absolute delight to have this one. Another word of caution, use both of your hands, or you might not be able to handle all the juiciness.
Big Bong Burger:
Seriously one wouldn’t expect this in a burger. This reinstated my faith in innovations in food. The coleslaw salad, the rear patty, tomato & lettuce are too mainstream. Make way for the Golpark special. Yes you heard me right, coz this one’s made with pulled lamb meat & kosha mangsho reduction. The spicy goat meat curry is reduced on low heat to do away with the runny-ness yet retaining the juiciness. The match is unmistakeably Bengali yet served in burger style. Truely amazing, & am sure will be a hit among the patrons.
Another innovative one, this one has two mini vegetable chops inside. The aloo & beetroot chops are topped with generous amount of kasundi mayo, giving you the conventional taste in an unconventional setting. The chops have crisp coating & soft inner filling, making them perfect.
From the amazing burgers we moved on to the other item BFB is betting on, the pizzas.
A truely thin crust bread served on an equally thin wooden plate topped with thinner layer of spinach and corn with ricotta. The thinnest of the pizzas I’ve had. The taste however is amazing to say the least.
Another thin crust veg pizza topped with bell pepper, sun dried tomatoes & onions. Interestingly the onions & peppers weren’t served raw. Rather they were grilled & presumably tossed in olive oil before being laid on the bread. Vegetarian pizza seldom appeals to me, but this one with its grilled ingredients gave it an unique touch & was great to have.
After two veggie pizzas I was literally longing for this one. Prepared with grilled chicken, grilled bell lepper, caramelized onions, sliced olives & sprinkled with some grated cheese this one tasted as amazing as it looked. However the rim of the thin crust was a tad bit dry, the rest it was absolutely gorgeous.
The starters, burgers & pizzas had already filled my stomach, & I was thinking, maybe I don’t have that much of a big fat belly. All the three dishes looked & smelled great! The pasta was mildly tangy & spicy. Both the risottos were cooked perfectly, but can’t judge them as I had only half a spoon, or might be even less.
Though I was full, & hardly touched the main course, as they say, ‘there is always some space for desserts’. & even if there isn’t, you make some when the dessert is this good.
A layered chocolate cake, where the pastry layers are very nearly absent, the whole wedge is mostly whipped chocolate cream with some chocolate sauce drizzled on top. The presentation was eyesoothing, as was the balance of sweetness. The cake was just brilliant.
This one was given out as gifts in goodie bags along with their in house dips. The brownie was super soft & moist (though I tried this in the morning of the day after). The crumbs of roasted apricots were too good to find as I merrily finished it off.
Overall ‘My Big Fat Belly’s surely delivers what it promised. The great starters, the juicy burgers & thin crust pizzas aren’t only perfect, they bring certain innovations onto the table which makes them truely stand out from the crowd. Personally I liked each & every dish they served. As far as the mocktails & drinks are concerned, they are great too, hopefully they will be competitively priced as well! More interestingly I’m looking forward to BFB introducing their burger & chicken wings challenges. Supposedly the winner will get the food for free, & their pic put up in the wall of fame. My best wishes to Aakarsh & his team on this great endeavour. Looking forward to visiting them again,
Until then happy eating