Sizzling Joe | Restaurant Review

Place: Sizzling Joe
Location: Food Court, GVK One, Banjara Hills
Cuisine: Continental
Meal: Dinner

After watching Hugo with a couple of friends at Inox, we walked into the food court at GVK One for a quick meal. Having heard and read about Sizzling Joe,  I wanted to give it a try. I wasn’t expecting anything great for one of my friend had a horrible experience with them recently. I should have listened to him and stayed way from it. Alas!!

Since there were only three vegetarian sizzler to choose from, it was an easy choice. I picked the Corn Cheese Shaslik sizzler, which was supposed to be soft cottage cheese and corn balls, fried and skewered with onion and capsicum, served on rice loaded with sour garlic sauce. I asked the guy at the counter if I could get it without the capsicum, and he tells me there is no capsicum in this sizzler. Hmmm… The 175 bucks sizzler got billed for Rs. 200 including taxes. Awesome!!

We sat at one of the tables waiting for our food. One of my friend had ordered a Fusilli Pasta in Pesto sauce from these guys, which was served first.

First off, for 150 bucks, the quantity seemed very less. Next, it tasted more like Alfredo sauce than Pesto. And then, it was served cold. My friend thought it was alright, and ate it without complaining.

And then came my sizzler. Again, the quantity seemed very less. The French Fries were soggy, and they were barely any vegetables on the plate. Forget capsicum, there were no onions as well. I started off with the rice on top, covered with the mentioned sour garlic sauce which barely had any taste and was bland. The rice was under-cooked too. And then, to my horror, I see a sharp something sticking out in the rice.

The Cottage Cheese and Corn balls were placed under the rice skewered into two long, sharp toothpicks. There was no way I could get it out of the plate without getting my hands dirty. The balls tasted alright, and the rice tasted better with them, but overall, the experience was horrible. The sizzler was the worst I’ve had so far.

Overall, a horrendous meal. If it were another day, I would have complained about the sizzler to the management, but having enjoyed an awesome movie, I was in no mood to do so tonight. The guy at the counter too seemed like a loser, for he was swearing at someone else while I was placing my order. For the price, the quantity seemed minimal, and the taste was pathetic. It’s one of the worst restaurant experiences.

Stay away!!

Food: 3/10
Service: 4/10
Ambiance: NA
Meal for 1: Rs. 200/-

Verdict: 3/10

My other friend had a South Indian Special Thali from the Gongura counter.

It looked good, and apparently even tasted good. I’m sure it was way better than a Sizzling Joe sizzler!!

Liu’s Chinese Restaurant | Restaurant Review

Place: Liu’s Chinese Restaurant
Location: S.D Road, in the lane behind Nanking, Secnderabad
Cuisine: Chinese
Meal: Dinner (with a couple of friends)

On a Saturday night, we decided to go hog at Nanking (listed as of my favorite Chinese restaurants in town). Since it was packed, my friend pulled us to its sister restaurant, which apparently shares the same kitchen. Liu’s is a small little place, interiors very similar to Nanking, a little brighter, and with a table available right away since not many people are aware of its existence.. I was kinda pissed the moment I entered, for when we asked if we could occupy an empty table with a reserved board on it, the manager rudely asked us if we couldn’t read the sign. Anyways, we sat at another table ignoring what just happened.

The moment we sat down, the waiter was behind us to place the order. They have the same menu as Nanking. My non-veg eating friend ordered for Chicken Drumsticks and Ginger Chicken. Me and my other vegetarian friend asked him to suggest a starter other than what the menu had to offer, and we zeroed on Chilly Mushroom. Later on, we again asked him to help us with some kinda Noodles for the main course, and he suggested Soft Noodles with Vegetables, Mushrooms and Bamboo Shoots. We also ordered a Vegetable American Chopsuey.


Both the Chicken items were served in about 10 minutes, and it took another 5 minutes for the Mushrooms. Firstly, the quantity looked quite less when compared to either of the Chicken items. Next off, they tasted horrendous. There was too much sauce, and the mushrooms tasted very very bitter. We expected it to be spicy, for it was Chilly Mushroom, but it turned out to be fiery spicy.


After a disastrous start, I was hoping for a turn around with the main course. The noodles with Mushrooms looked yummy to look at. Once we dug in, the noodles were under-cooked, and were dripping with oil. Except for the flavor for the Shiitake, the curry was pretty much bland., and I could barely find any bamboo shoots. Again disappointment.


The worst though was yet to come: American Chopsuey, which I happened to like the last time around (it was at Nanking though). The noodles were crunchy, and the vegetables well cooked, okay, but the curry was so bloody sweet that I couldn’t eat more than one serving. I know American Chopsuey’s are sweet, but I never tasted anything this sweet. It was as if the chef added all the left over sugar into this. Horrible!!

The only part of the meal we vegetarian guys were happy with was our Coke!! The Chicken was  apparently good, but whats the use when I don’t eat it. As if the terrible food wasn’t enough, a bunch of waiters suddenly appeared at our table, trying to rush us out while we were struggling to eat through what we ordered. I really started to doubt my choice of Nanking as one of my favorites after this pathetic experience. I’m never ever coming back to this place, even if it means that I have to wait for an hour at Nanking (which I might never come back to as well).

Food: 3/10 (Vegetarian only)
Ambiance: 7/10
Service: 4/10
Meal for 3: Rs. 786/- (Veg – Rs. 400/-)

Verdict: 3.5/10

Agneepath | Movie Review

Ok, firstly, I am no big fan of Amitabh’s 1990 version of Agneepath, and so went to watch the movie with no expectations. But still, I walked out of the theater with a head ache. Karan Malhotra and Karan Johar, what the hell was that?? I mean, I really wonder what these guys were thinking when they started to make the movie. With this script, and the obvious comparisons to the 1990’s film, they should have known that it was an absolute disaster in the making!

Except for Sanjay Dutt, and maybe Katrina Kaif, the film stands no ground. It is a three-hour long, slow, boring movie (did I mention long??). Sanju baba is really good, but he aint Dark Knight’s Joker to save the movie. Hrithik tried really really hard to live up to Amithabh’s character, but failed miserably. How can he, when he does not appear on the screen until exactly 45 minutes have passed by? And Priyanka, our irritating slum dwelling heroine makes sure that she wears designer sarees with backless blouses all the time, her pallu covering less than half of her bosom, is horrendous. The best part of the movie though is in the climax, when our Vijay Dinanath Chauhan, twice stabbed by the intimidating, bald, scary Kancha Cheena, lives long enough to avenge his father’s death. I can’t believe that I live in a generation where such kinda dumb and dull movies are still made.

I suggest you stay away from this movie at all costs. Instead, go buy a DVD of Amitabh’s version, which though not a classic, is way way better than this version. I expect Mithunda to entertain you much more than Chikni Chameli!!

In one sentence, it’s not Agneepath, but agni pariksha for us!!

Verdict: 3/10

PS: There are people I know of who liked/loved the movie. If you happen to be one of them, well, nevermind…

For a detailed review, read on…

Master Dinanath Chauhan (Chetan Pandit) is an upright, principled and role-model citizen of a small island south of Mumbai, Mandwa. Kancha (Sanjay Dutt) wants to take over Mandwa and use it as a base to export cocaine. He accuses Masterji of child abuse, and hangs him to death. Vijay (Hrithik Roshan), Masterji’s son, vows to himself to return to Mandwa and avenge his father’s death. He, along with his mother move to Mumbai, where he joins Rauf Lala’s (Rishi Kapoor) evil gang. Rest of the story is about how Vijay rises through ranks in Rauf Lala’s empire and fights Kancha to get Mandwa back to its people.

Actors Performance
Hrithik Roshan tried really hard to be Amitabh Bachchan, but thanks to the script, fails. Dont get me wrong here, he did a pretty good job, but his characterization fails him. He seemed to have worked quite a bit for this role, and the effort shows on-screen. But there is no charm in his character, and his dialogue delivery was no where close to AB’s. However good he was, bottom-line, he ain’t the Vijay Dinanath Chauhan we know.

Priyanka Chopra looked awful. Except for a couple of songs, she barely had screen space. And when she did, was irritating. I thought she over-acted in most of the shots. She seriously needs to work on her wardrobe, and stop showing off her curves unnecessarily. Rishi Kapoor shines as Rauf Lala. He, along with Om Puri, easily walk-through their respective roles. The rest of the cast was alright.

Katrina Kaif sizzles in her brief appearance in the item song. She looks yummy delicious, and was way better than Priyanka Chopra, looks wise.

The star of the movie though is Sanjay Dutt. He was brilliant, and I mean absolutely brilliant as Kancha Cheena. He bald look is scary enough to put children to sleep. His expressions and the menacing laugh were great. But again, the script fails him. Such threatening Kancha Cheena losing the battle to a wounded Vijay without a fight in the climax seemed really silly.

Debut director Karan Malhotra simply makes a mess of the original movie. Mukul Anand’s Agneepath is not a classic in itself, so when remaking, I am guessing Karan intended to better it. But unfortunately, he, along with co-script writer Ila Dutta Bedi (story-screenplay) completely ruined it. Firstly, something I don’t understand is why the movie was scripted to happen in 1992. Is it because they thought that people don’t use common sense in that period?? It is a slow, draggy movie which makes no sense. It is so senseless that our hero, Vijay not only enters Kancha’s den, but blasts Mandwa just like that, single-handedly, while whole of Mumbai’s police force does not even dare to enter the island because of its high security. And then, he, twice stabbed, has the strength to lift our heavy Sanju baba on his shoulders before hanging him. Awesome!! And oh, did I mention the sister sentiment in between (which is followed by a song)?? The screenplay is mediocre. Direction, though good in parts, is not worth talking about. With actors like Sanjay, Hrithik and Rishi Kapoor at bay, even I can do a better job.

Other Departments
Music by Ajay-Atul is alright. Except for ‘Chikni Chameli’ and the background score, rest of the stuff is forgettable. The re-recording is good. Lyrics by Amitabh Bhattacharya are alright. The old Agneepath had amazing dialogues, but the current one lacks punch. Editing by Akiv Ali could have been way better. I can’t stress enough than mention that people started walking out of the theater on the first day 30 minutes before the movie ended. Cinematography by  Kiran Deohans and Ravi K. Chandram is good. Art work by Sabu Cyril could is bad. The sets, especially the banyan tree looked so bloody artificial. Graphics are pathetic. Production values by Dharma Productions are not up to the mark. For a film from their house, we expect it to be atleast technically brilliant, even if story wise pathetic.

Papa Johns | Restaurant Review

Place: Papa Johns
Location: Road No. 12, Opp. Nissan showroom, Banjara Hills
Cuisine: Pizza
Meal: Lunch (with a couple of friends)

After enjoying a movie, we decided to go hog at Papa Johns. I loved their pizza’s while in the US, their garlic sauce is yum!! So here we were at their Road No. 12 outlet at about 3:00 PM on Saturday afternoon. One table was occupied, and rest of the place was empty. We sat in a corner and took a while to decide on our order.

We ordered a Meal for Two (half and half of Small Garden Special and Veg. Barbecue pizza, portion of Cheese Sticks, and 2 x Pepsi), Tandoori Chicken for One, Original Breadsticks and a bottle of water. We sat there for about 30 minutes thereafter, but nothing, not even the water or Pepsi’s were served. When after that long we asked the waiter to get us the water at least, he serves the Cheese Sticks. After about 10 minutes, the Pepsi’s were served, but still no water. Then he brings us the Pizza for Two, which was supposed to be a half and half, but it turns out to only Garden Special. We ask for a replacement and he takes the pizza back in. Then came the water, along with Garlic Parmesan Breadsticks, not the Original Breadsticks we ordered. At this point I totally lost it. I asked if the Manager was in the store, and was answered in positive. Five minutes later, another waiter comes and informs us that the Manager is not in the store. We walked out!!

Ten minutes after we sat at our table, the place was empty. We were the only customers in the store and it took the waiter more than 30 minutes to get a bottle of water. And then he messes up our order big time. We would have continued with our meal if the Manager (who was told to be in store) attended to us, but he was amiss.

I had great expectations from this place. Their pizza’s are good, no doubt about that. But if the service is this pathetic, I would never return to this store. Surprisingly, these were the same guys who delivered a pizza on time when I ordered one on New Year’s eve. But such horrid service is not going to gain them customers in the restaurant.

Food: NA
Ambiance: 7/10
Service: 0/10

Verdict: 3/10

PS: We did taste the Cheese Sticks. They were good but not great.

Kanchana | Movie Review

It is impossible for me to write a detailed review on this movie. I already wasted 3 hours of my precious time watching it.

A thriller which was comical, wherein every actor overacts, a message oriented movie which makes no impact on the audience. With its concept, the film could have been much much better with a better script. Direction was horrible, screenplay and cinematography average, music mediocre.

Overall, a disappointment!

Verdict: 3.5/10