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Yakitori, Gyozas, Baos & Wows: Why You Need To Head To Mumbai’s First Izakaya

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What Makes It Awesome

By now, you probably have heard of Mizu- A Modern Izakaya. And if you haven’t, then it’s not too late...yet. At the helm are Vedant Malik & Chef Lakhan Jethani, both of whom share a common passion for good food and experiences, and together they’ve set up Mizu. It’s the most unassuming Japanese restaurant-cum-bar. Rather, Mumbai’s first Izakaya as they say. It’s also located at the most unassuming spot- Atria Mall, Worli.

I walked into the restaurant hungry as hell, and I was almost convinced that I’d definitely spot sushi on the menu (to at least get started with). But guess what? There were none, and that was just one of the surprises that was in store for me. What I honestly loved about Mizu was the fact that it made Japanese food super approachable and less intimidating. The menu here is simple and focused- a variety of Yakitori, a good selection of Gyozas, Baos and their signature hot pot. What does this do for me as a first-time diner? Makes decision-making super easy and a less cumbersome process.

I started the meal with a Yakitori platter and God knows it has been a while since a dish made me tear up (because it was so good, what did you think?) Flavourful and easy to eat, I’m a fan of this Yakitori and it doesn’t get better than this platter. Team it up with a gyoza- and you’ve struck gold. I was first served the braised shitake & buttered peas. Being a complete non-vegetarian, I thought this would be a gamble, but fortunately, I hit the jackpot. I followed this up with a pork, Naga chilli & fermented cabbage gyoza, which was equally delightful. To end the round of starters, I obviously had the Chicken Karaage Bao. The bun was fluffy, soft, and delightfully light (and not rubbery like the baos you get at most places.)

The main course was their delicious signature Hot Pot (with pork and chicken), and the coolest thing about the dish is the delightful experience of watching it cook on your table. That’s right. However, what totally stood out was that mind-blowing broth (which I sincerely wish I could bottle and take back home.) To summarise the experience, the dish reminded me of home; of comfort. Interestingly, majority of the food at Mizu is made using ingredients grown locally, which is where the twist in flavour arises. And the fact that the team worked relentlessly for over eight months to put this menu together goes on to show their need for serving only the best.

And if you thought this was it, then no, there’s a whole lot more. The desserts at Mizu deserve a whole new write up, to be honest, but I’m going to do my best. I started with the Chocolate Zen, which was honestly so beautiful to look at, it was hard enough for me to devour it (but I did.) And it sure as hell tasted as good as it looked. Pastry Chef Nikhil is truly a food scientist, because what he put on the plate was a variety of flavours and textures that will surprise your palate. While we’re once again on the topic of surprises, do not miss their wacky sorbets. I tried the Apple-Fennel, Pear-Wasabi and Strawberry-Shisho (and I couldn’t pick a single winner.)

There are plenty of beverages, cocktails, beers and teas that will be perfect accompaniments to your meal, so you know you’re in for a wholesome evening. Not just that, if you think I’ve eaten everything on the menu, then you’ll be glad to know that there’s a lot more from where that came, like authentic Ramen bowls, Donburi and other delicious fare.

All of the above has convinced you already, I’m sure, but let me also throw in the fact that while the food and desserts here are a done deal, the ambience and music are killer too. I, for one, found myself Shazam-ing my way through the evening, and shamelessly asked them to share their playlist. Now call up your friends, fam, partners and make a plan to head here already.

Mizu is a place for you to relax, unwind and indulge, and don’t let anything come in the way of that. See you there!

How Much Did It Cost

₹1000 - ₹3000

Best To Go With

Big Group, Family, Bae, Kids