Aaswad & Prakash Restaurant in Mumbai
Aaswad & Prakash hotel at Shivaji Park in Mumbai, India are famous restaurants for authentic Maharashtrian Food. Being born and lived in Shivaji Park for 25 yrs of my life these 2 joints are very close to my heart So many memories are attached..birthdays, get togethers, festivals, post walk hangouts, fights, patch-ups, etc. No matter where you live some places leave a mark forever I think more than the place it’s the memories. This post is dedicated to my friends and the good times which we had in Shivaji Park:)
It is only once in a while when one comes across a dining experience which is so simple yet classic. Maharashtrian cuisine in its most authentic form can be enjoyed at Aaswad.
I went to Aaswad during India in December and was prepared for the no-nonsense type quick service which one normally experiences at such traditional food serving joints. But what I got along with speed in service were some patient suggestions on what we could try.
Now the most important part: FOOD!!!
The Drinks: We tried the Kokam Sarbat (Sweet) and Solkadi (Savory) which were so refreshing. How can I forget Piyush. It’s a drink made from Shrikhand.
The Snacks: Puri Bhaji, Dahi Misal and Vada – Needless to say, all were fantastic. Different types of special chutneys served along with each dish was a revelation.
Main Course: I am a major fan of Pitla bhakri (rotis served with a spicy preparation made of just besan and other condiments) and that is usually my comfort food in any Marathi restaurant. Here too, we called for Pitla Bhaji Bhakri which additionally offered Brinjal masala along with the Pitla Bhakri. Not to forget another chutney made of spices and onions. Heaven!
Finally, we ended with the humble Varan Bhaat which was served in a big shield like plate with two portions of rice with varan on it served with a small piece of lemon. The plate had two different types of dal, fried noodle-like papad and a karanji (fried moon-shaped traditional sweet). Our server pushed us to have a little ghee along with the rice as it would taste better which we eventually agreed to. Heaven-Part II!
Dessert was Kharvas and Shrikhand Puri J Aaswad was awarded for the best Kharwas in town.
The food, service and authenticity at Aaswad truly deserves all the applause it gets
Now about Prakash
Prakash located in the heart of Shivaji Park, is one place where you will come over & over again. Prakash is a landmark in itself being frequented by marathi actors, politicians, writers, poets & artists since decades together.
I have been visiting Prakash since I was a kid. The legacy being passed down to me by my parents who again have been visiting here since their childhood (True with all the Maharashtrian kids). Always feel nostalgic whenever I visit Prakash even today remembering the childhood days of going to the beach & having sabudana vada & piyush on the way back.
A no frills restaurant which serves out the most delicious sabudana vada n misal. You cannot go wrong with most of their dishes. Thalipeeth, batata vada, puri bhaji & their ever famous piyush. Once you have piyush of Prakash you will definitely set it as a benchmark.
Try visiting Prakash on a fasting day & you will come across a swarm of people gathered around as if Sachin Tendulkar is visiting the restaurant.
This is soul food for Marathi folks. There is minimum fuss, minimum noise, and minimum chatter in this place. People (families, even) walk in, eat, and walk out. If you go in single, you will likely share a table with strangers. It’s std practice.
What do you order? Sabudana wada (best in the business — they make sabudana khichadi and wadas of that and fry.
They have the best sabudana wada which never fails in the same crispy taste and the green coconut chutney makes it even better. The same goes for Batata wadas. Their batata wadas size are almost as large as tennis balls with thin crispy coating of the besan and is full of the lovely potato stuffing. Many times we have taken huge parcels of these delicious wadas for house parties. Masale Bhaat is also there speciality
The crispy kothimbir vadi and alu vadi is out of the world too. We also tried the modaks which are rice dumplings filled with sweet coconut and jaggery filling. And obviously don’t miss the kharvas