I know I know…
How did I land up in this part of the world, you ask? Well, why not! If you’ve ever googled about restaurants in Vasai or cafes to visit in Vasai, you’ll find Google giving you a blank stare. So I decided to list down the options for those looking to grab a bite in this part of town. Apart from McDonalds, Dominos and Balaji, here’s where you can head:
East Side Café – Finding a proper sit-down gourmet restaurant in Vasai East is no easy task. Among the very few options available, this one is my personal favourite. This tiny restaurant has polished interiors and is a great place to grab a late night coffee (until 11 pm). The menu is limited but carefully curated and no dish you order will ever let you down. I tried the mocktails too and they were absolutely delicious. The drinks are crafted by the owner/manager himself, and with his background in the F&B industry, he takes it upon himself to make it perfectly!
Mad Over Fish – My joy at seeing a seafood restaurant in this part of town knew no bounds! Well, you know what they say about high expectations.. they always disappoint, just like Mad Over Fish did. The restaurant has a lovely, earthy ambiance but the food is pathetic and alcohol, highly priced. I ordered Goan prawn pulao – which, if you have eaten Goan food, know is nothing like this wet, gravy-topped, masala-rice dish in the image below. Goan fish curry, a dish supposed to be having a rich coconut base, had no coconut at all and the spice brought tears to my eyes. I’ve had better Koliwada prawns at the Koli festival in Juhu, cooked in an open stall. These prawns were hard, not too fresh, cooked in cheap oil and tasteless. You’ll have to fish for seafood dishes on the Mad Over Fish menu since they are pretty limited. If you do happen to go, I’d advise choosing off their Indo-Chinese menu – can’t go wrong with that!
Relish – Your go-to option when you’re home and don’t want to cook! Relish is your neighbourhood, no-frills-but-delicious food joint serving a mix of Indian food like butter chicken/kadhai paneer/dal makhni and naan, biryanis, pav bhaji and Indo-chinese staples like fried rice and Manchurian etc. Good food and value-for-money.
Hangout Cafe – From light bites like nachos and bruschetta to sandwiches, wraps, burgers, pizzas and pastas. Hangout Cafe is a fairly small eatery offering a wide variety of affordable continental fare. I only tried the Pizza which was decent for the price. It was loaded with toppings but I wish the base wasn’t so biscuit-like.
Pizzeria Fried Chicken (PFC) – Go here for the Twister Potato! Once you eat it, you’ll want to keep visiting the place every day, but it is a gamble since it is unavailable half the time! PFC is a small air conditioned restaurant with a huge, huuuge menu! Indo-chinese food, snacks, milkshakes and sandwiches feature on the menu. Skip the coffee – it’s terrible, but do try the bucket of chicken which has 10 pieces of super crispy pieces!
The Social Brew – “Eat here, or we’ll both starve” is the board that welcomes you as you enter The Social Brew. These folks really do have a sense of humour and besides serving up great food, they offer a good time too! Quirky seating options, a rack full of comics and books and the current playlist ensure you spend a decent amount of time at the restaurant. I happened to go there to satisfy a nacho craving and plan to go back to try the pizzas and pancakes!
Junkyard – While Junkyard is easy on the wallet, I wasn’t impressed by the food at all. The pasta sauce had a very glue-like texture, the pizzas were deep dish and hard, and their mocktails tasted worse than medicine. Definitely not going back until there’s a quality upgrade.
Papa’s Cafe – It’s hard to ignore Papa’s Cafe with their sunny yellow facade and glass windows through which you can see every table full, all the time! With a limited menu of flat bread, ciabatta, fries, pasta and dessert, everything here is in the range of 80-150, making it a popular hangout among college kids. The sriracha fried chicken ciabatta was exceptional and the piri piri fries were decent (although could have used some more sauce.) The desserts were a let down, with the red velvet item being served in a jar, looking like gloop and having chunks of chocolate inside, while the baked New York cheesecake had such a soggy base.
Frankie Corner – While the shawarma here is better than that at many other outlets, it can be a gamble going there. Sometimes, they run out of chicken at 8:30 PM, and at other times, they’re happily serving up roll after roll an hour later. You’ll find a lot of quick eats here such as the chicken cheese pav, chicken tikka and the like as well as cold coffee. The price is super reasonable and you won’t mind heading here for a quick evening snack.
Merwans – It takes every ounce of strength I have to not go into Merwans every time I pass by and to stuff myself silly with those delicious, flaky chicken patties! OMG, so good! Merwans is a cake shop that has numerous outlets across the city and is a good, super affordable place to stop for snacks. The patties are Rs. 14 and the subs and croissants aren’t much higher. Try the almond croissant and lemon pastry – you’ll love it!
Neopolitana Pizza – Neopolitana Pizza has a trendy set-up that’s hard to miss. They’ve got great music and is always buzzing with patrons. The menu has something for everyone, but the confused staff always mix up my orders and affably correct them. They have an all-you-can-eat buffet but the pizzas are nothing to complain about either.
Andy’s – I really don’t know what to say about this place. I mean, it’s alright-ish. You’ll find minimal decor and most McDonald-style offerings here – burgers, nuggets, fries, coke, garlic bread, but I’d pick McDonalds over it because no one can beat their fries.
Pedal Power – This is SUCH a darling place and my new favourite in Vasai. The decor features various cycle paintings through the ages, there are cycles mounted up on brick walls, even the area where one would sit on high stools have a handlebar and pedals. The music is amazing, the menu is great and the decor makes you all happy! I tried the buttermilk fried chicken which was delicious however the home made nachos had an overdose of toppings on the top and absolutely nothing below. It would have done well with molten cheese instead of a layer of mozarella stuck together.
That’s about all for now! There’s still a lot more to explore, and I’ll keep updating this post with more places to eat at in Vasai as and when I try out the latest.
Got any tips on restaurants to visit in Vasai? Comment below!
See you soon!