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Restaurant review: Serafina

india Updated: Dec 07, 2012 18:10 IST
Sarit Ray
Sarit Ray
Hindustan Times

What: Serafina
Where: Level 3, Palladium Mall, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel
Call: 4023 7711
What’s on the menu: Pizza, pasta, salads, mains and dessert
Drinking: Yes
Smoking: No

International restaurants are opening up in Mumbai faster than you can familiarise yourself with all the fancy-named ingredients, which now attract rather than scare the suddenly-discerning, MasterChef-watching, urban Indian customer.

Serafina, an Italian chain started originally in New York in the mid-90s, and now with branches as far flung as Tokyo, Sao Paulo and Moscow, is the latest addition to that
burgeoning list.

And while you can’t opt for a table on the sidewalk like you could at their outlet in New York, you could still get a damn good meal at a surprisingly reasonable price.

I’m not much of a salad person, really, but the Serafina Chicken Salad (Rs 475) might have converted me. The generous came thoroughly coated in pesto, with grilled chicken, raisins and pine nuts — the right amount of savoury, crunch and sweet that you will hear top chefs swearing by.

In fact, the salad set the bar so high, that it made the Margherita (Rs 575) that followed look slightly unimpressive. The thin-crust pizza tasted brilliant closer to the edges, but disappointingly soggy in the middle. And we weren’t big fans of the unpitted olives either. However, mention must be made of the large selection of wood-fired pizzas (Serafina’s original claim to fame) on the menu.

Seasons of MasterChef have proved that making a good risotto isn’t as easy as it seems. The Risotto al Porcini (Rs 865) at Serafina was, however, one of the best we’ve tasted. The mushrooms were juicy, and the dish itself wasn’t overwhelmingly cheesy.

The big letdown, though, was the Panna Cotta (Rs 450). Far from the smooth and light consistency, this one felt tough, almost rubbery.

Serafina already seems to have found popularity — we found it buzzing on a weeknight. And the odd dessert apart, it’s one of the finest Italian restaurants in town right now.

What we like
The salads
The risotto

We don’t like
The panna cotta

Rating: ***1/2

In a tweet: Hits all the right spots, minus a couple. Pick from a wide range of pastas, and don’t miss the salad