WHAT: The Fatty Bao
    RATING: *****
    WHERE: Junction of 14th and 33rd Road, Linking Road, Bandra West
    WHEN: 12 noon to 3:30 pm; 7 pm to 1 am COST: Rs 2,000 for two, with one drink each CALL: 2600-5220

    The wild mushroom and truffle oil dim sum at The Fatty Bao is a thing of a beauty.  Pungent, earthy aromas of truffles smack you the moment you open the lid of the Chinese steamer. Inside sit six boat-shaped dim sums with beetroot-purple stained wrappings, topped with edamame beans. The dim sums, filled with a mix of chopped mushrooms and, for a bit of crunch, chopped snow fungus, will appeal to  both the vegetarian and the carnivore.

    With a fun space and a menu that crackles, it’s not surprising that Fatty Bao, by serial restaurateurs AD Singh, Manu Chandra and Chetan Rampal, has been packed from the day it opened. We had to call a week in advance just to get a mid-week booking.

    In a kind of Alibaba moment, an unassuming red gate opens into a tiny passage, which leads to a brightly lit area. Outside, in the al-fresco patio, one bright blue wall is painted with an Oriental-style food story map. Beyond the patio is the main dining area that has Chinese tangram-inspired floor tiles. On the tables sit salt and pepper shakers that have superimposed Japanese Kokeshi doll designs on them. 

    We are seated inside, in an alcove across from the bar. We order one each of the deep maroon, raspberry-flavoured whisky sours and the orange-hued Mandalay Bay that are flying off the bar counter. Both signature cocktails are good, but we found the berry-tanginess of the whisky sour more interesting than the citrus-y Mandalay.

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    The wild mushroom and truffle oil dim sum was a thing of beauty.


    We begin with the char sui bao; a plump fluffy white bao with a filling of meltingly soft pork, draped in a sweet, sticky, hoisin sauce. Next up is the brie tempura wedges topped with the Japanese spice mix shichimi togarashi — an exotic, Oriental version of cheese pakoras.

    Moving on to mains, we order a bowl of somewhat disappointing cho su ramen. The broth and noodles are fine, but the pork belly and bacon lack richness and we leave it mostly untouched. Thick, sour and spicy, the chicken kapitan curry — full of kafir lime and basil flavours — is so good you can slurp it just by itself.

    And while the lemon sable was missing from our green tea chiffon cake, the lemony freshness of the yuzu parfait and the yuzu sorbet more than made up for it.

    Fatty Bao is so enjoyable because it serves very serious food without making you think too much about what you’re eating, in a really casual, laid-back space.

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    (HT pays for all meals, and reviews anonymously)

Nitish to girls: Learn martial arts, defend yourselves

Chief minister Nitish Kumar called upon girls of the state to take up martial arts along with their education to defend themselves against eve teasers and other anti-social elements.

"Girls should learn all forms of martial arts such as judo, karate and taekwondo to acquire physical strength, quick reflexes and alertness for selfdefence," he said even as he inaugurated the 31st Senior National Taekwondo Championships at the Pataliputra Sports Complex here on Tuesday.

"We want to make the new generation strong through sports and martial arts training.

For achieving the goal, the state government started martial arts training in schools across Bihar a few years ago.

Over one lakh schoolgirls learnt the basic martial arts through this programme," said Nitish adding that he also wanted to include judo and karate training along with taekwondo for boys and girls in the schools.

"The martial arts training in village schools brought about a sea change as several girls participated in various tournaments held abroad and brought laurels for the state," he said.

Presiding over the function, art, culture and youth affairs minister Sukhda Pandey reiterated the government's commitment to overall development of sports in the state.

She said the state had hosted several national and international tournaments in the past two years with full support and motivation from the chief minister.

"We want proper coordination between the government and sports associations to take Bihar sports to the next level," she said.

Welcoming the guests, Taekwondo Federation of India president Harish Kumar said 38 teams from different parts of the country were participating in the three-day event.

"We have more than five lakh taekwondo players in the country and hope to take it to 15 lakh in the next couple of years, equalling the strength of Korea," he said.

TFI president also presented mementos to chief minister Nitish Kumar and art, culture and youth affairs minister Sukhda Pandey.

Bihar Taekwondo Association secretary Ajay Kumar proposed a vote of thanks.

 

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