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Ponchiz – Sizzling Pune December 24, 2009

Posted by Chatore Diaries in dessert, nagar, ponchiz, Pune, sizzler, viman.

Every once in a while there comes a movie that leaves you awestruck, say like the Titanic, Black and now Avatar. What is even rarer is a good sizzler joint.
Nestled in a cozy corner of Pune’s upcoming locality, Viman Nagar, is the latest Sizzler Joint – Ponchiz. Yes, the name is a derivative of the quintessential Paunch of the well fed. A visit to Ponchiz left me wanting more.

The Food

Ponchiz, is essentially your own sizzler shop. With an enviable variety of Sizzler bases, sauces, and accompaniments, it literally leaves you bedazzled with the sheer variety on offer. So what this basically means is that you could pick up a Chicken, a fish, a beef or a lamb base; add a sauce of your choice from Chilly Garlic, Mushroom, Red Wine, Barbeque, or a combination thereof; choose your potatoes –mashed, fries, sautéed; add accompaniments – Sautéed veggies or boiled, and your choice of noodles or herb rice. And voila! You have your own very Sizzler!
Apart from Sizzlers, they do also have soups, salads, vegetarian and non vegetarian starters, and Dessert that takes you straight to heaven!

The price? We’ll come to that later.

My Order

I went with my wife and some friends on a Sunday evening. As things typically are on a Sunday evening, I had a case of the next day work blues already settling in. So I needed good food!

We started with the Chicken noodles soup. The first taste filled me with happy warmth all over. The soup was very well balanced with just the right consistency – not too thick and not too watery either. Just the way it is supposed to be. At Rs 50a pop, I think it was worth every paisa!

Next, we went with the Chicken wings for starters. The last time had chicken wings was from a popular pizza joint, and boy did I hate them. I’d thought I had lost my taste for them, and boy was I wrong or what! These wings were different. Each piece was succulent, very well cooked and marinated in just the best chicken wing sauce I have ever had! For 75 bucks a plate for 6 pieces, this has a lot of promise!
Now came the most important part – The Main Course. I order like a King, and eat like one too! I ordered for a Chicken Shashlik base, with Red Wine and Mushroom sauce, mashed potatoes, sautéed green pepper and onions, grilled pineapple and herb rice. Honestly speaking, I was expecting a lot of cabbage cushioning like most sizzler joints do and tad too hot sizzler plate which inevitably burns my veggies! But this was different. The plate was sizzling for sure, but the way it should. The aromas from the sauce, chicken, potatoes, rice and pineapple were intermingling in perfect harmony and the wafting smell pushed my hunger to newer levels. So far so good.

My first bite was enough to tell me that I would be coming back. The chicken was well cooked, the sauce well thought of, and the veggies not burnt, the pineapple grilled to perfection. The highlight of my sizzler was the mashed potatoes. Mashed with cheese, and served hot, they beat any French fries hands down.
My friends had ordered Grilled Chicken with Chilly Garlic sauce, Roast chicken with barbeque sauce, and a grilled chicken with barbeque sauce. Of all, I loved the barbeque sauce the most. That is going to be my next order.

Destination dessert next. You’d think that after eating what we did, we’d be insane to go for dessert, and you’d probably be right. Ponchiz doesn’t outsource its desserts. Everything is baked in house by the dessert chef. We decided to go with Ponchiz Choco surprise and Frozen Delight. Ponchiz Choco Surprise is a three layered dessert, with one layer oodles of chocolate, walnut and choco chips! The frozen delight is a layered ice cream cake the like of which you shall not find anywhere in Pune, except at Ponchiz. If they served such desserts at Copenhagen, there would be no problem of global warming anywhere in the world!

The Bill

I will let you hazard a guess before I spill the best part. Go on, take a shot!
Okay, the grand total for all the food, repeat all- Soups, starters, four heavy duty sizzlers and desserts was Rs 865/- only. I did not know prices like that were still in fashion. That’s less money than what you’d spend on a pathetic Bollywood movie including the popcorn and excluding the parking. And not to forget the quality time with friends.

Go figure.


Highly recommended for anyone, any occasion.


Movie Review – "Paa"ss December 6, 2009

Posted by Chatore Diaries in abhishek, Amitabh, Bachchan, balan, Paa, review, vidya.
1 comment so far

I had a great many expectations from this one. Especially considering the core concept being another one of nature’s mysteries. But the final product was a pot pourry of multiple plots.

Having said that, I bow before the mighty Mr. Bachchan for having delivered one his finest performances, ever. This came close to Black, almost. What i would have liked to see was more of Big B on screen, rather than the reel dedicated to the sub plots, which as a matter of fact, did not add much to the movie.

The movie opens with Jaya Bachchan reading out the cast and crew’s names. Literally. Frankly speaking, just because it is a home production doesn’t mean that each and every family member needs to be a part of the show!

The foundational stone of the movie is (was marketed) as progeria, a genetic degenerative disorder, was lost somewhere in the melee of a failed romance, a challenging political career, and an effort to re-patch the failed romance after a gap of 13 years. Frankly speaking i would have loved if the movie dealt with the challenges of raising a child with progeria in a manner similar to how dyslexia was dealt with in TZP. Now that was a well woven plot.

the comparison however doesn’t go to say, that Paa was a a complete waste of my time on Sunday. the highlight of the movie was the very intelligent, crisp and really really fresh dialogues. Cheeky, and with a strong delivery, the dialogues left me clutching my sides with laughter. And i wasn’t the only one.

Abhi baby has been himself, with a highly ‘phoren’ educated accent to all his dialogues. Vidya Balan needs more acting lessons, but was a better choice than having family bahu Aish play that role. Thank god, or rather A B Corp., for that.

What I would have also liked to have was if the movie was not shot entirely in a mono chrome mode. A bit of color would have highlighted the child’s happy moments. The music is nothing great, and you wont miss much if you don’t carry it on your iPod.

I will recommend this movie to one and all, only for Big B’s performance. He has achieved a new high with Paa.