Mumbai is not known for being the most sexually liberated city in the world. But now it looks as if the city has got a tad more broad-minded. For Rs 650 a head, you can have a meal on Wednesday, which the chef claims, will arouse your sexual desire.
So, if you want to reignite an old flame, find a new date, are newly dating, or in a flagging relationship which needs a boost in the bedroom, then head to the Pan Asian restaurant, East, at Kemp’s Corner. It is set to host, what appears to be, the city’s first-ever aphrodisiac dinner on Wednesday night. Former chef of Nobu, New York, Nachiket Shetye, who owns East, has conceived the four-course meal.
The event has been co-organised by Mansi Poddar and Kanika Parab, who run the city website Brown Paper Bag. The idea struck Poddar when she stumbled upon an aphrodisiac food tasting in New York.
“People think of aphrodisiacs as oysters and chocolates. So, we deliberately delved into it and found lesser known food items like asparagus and pineapple, which are also aphrodisiacs,” says the 27-year-old, who co-founded Brown Paper Bag, with 26-year-old Parab, four months ago. “It will be a social event where people can mingle,” she adds. The duo started their website to promote cool clubs, restaurants and events in the city. This is its first event. “We have started organising niche events that are different and unusual in the city,” explains Parab.
She continues, “We have a bunch of subscribers. We hope they will come. Besides, it’s an open event, so we’re hoping other people will show up too. The restaurant has a capacity of 180.”
“Many single men are hoping that there will be lots of hot girls. We think it’s a good place for people to come on their first date, because there are not many things to do on a first date in Mumbai. We hope to attract newly weds and single people too,” she reveals.
Both of them claim they tried out the menu two weeks ago, with two food critics and it ‘probably worked’. “We went back to work straight after that, so probably the feeling was lost, but it’s fun to eat. I think you need to try it in a romantic setting with the right person,” she adds.
Despite the lack of scientific evidence to back it up, Shetye is convinced that it works because he felt a little happier after trying it. “Though I can’t comment on what people did afterwards,” he adds. “I wouldn’t have offered this menu if I didn’t believe in it,” the 27-year-old who spent three weeks researching aphrodisiacs to design it, elaborates.
“The ingredients I’m using are the ones which have been said to be aphrodisiacs since time immemorial.“There is no scientific evidence that they really are aphrodisiacs, but they have been used as such during the Greek and Roman empires, perhaps because of their shape or flavour. I have no idea exactly how lobster arouses you sexually.
“But if you look up an aphrodisiac, there are so many ways it can work by affecting different chemicals in your brain to excite you and that has a trickle effect on your body.” At East, they like to do different funky things. “It’s difficult to meet new people in Mumbai because people are often in groups. “This allows them to mingle and try interesting food and drop their inhibitions and meet new people in a nice ambience which isn’t speed dating.”