My search of Mumbai’s best Butter Chicken has begun. Many years ago, I had started a brief but secret unofficial search – now I’m launching an official one.
I begin this search with Goila Butter Chicken who, on their website say
“India’s favourite dish had been truncated way too much and was fast losing its authenticity to the sands of time. Someone had to revive the original flavours…”
I was encouraged by this statement and my interest was piqued enough to give it a go.
After my recent trip to London and having tasted the Butter Chicken at Breakspear Arms – I was transported back to Delhi. So much so, I wished I could order these flavours once back home in Mumbai as I had always been left disappointed with unauthentic flavours at the restaurants I had tried it.
Sometimes, the chicken hasn’t been tender enough, sometimes, strangely it has been too spicy and at other times, the smokey or charred flavour hasn’t been present.
The right combination of flavours was just not happening.
Cook to the Rescue?
Then, on a day when my home cook took the day off, I remembered my desire to try the Goila Butter Chicken, and for my mother who is a vegetarian and an ace cook – especially when it comes to Dal Makhni – we ordered Goila’s 24/7 Dal Makhni for her to try.
I am usually happy to order food online using Zomato or one of the other such sites, but I wanted to go through the experience of calling Goila Butter Chicken to see how the experience went.
At noon, after some disturbance in the phone line, my order for Butter Chicken (Rs.290), 24/7 Dal Makhni (Rs.235) and one Roomali Roti (Rs.35) was placed. The hope was for it to reach me at 1pm, but it unfortunately didn’t.
20 minutes later and a hungry me couldn’t wait to dive in.
Packaged in well-branded, neat and easy to open containers, the chutney had leaked, but the rest was all intact.
Everything was hot and ready to dig in. In recent times, one of my favourite places, Banana Leaf have started to send cold sambar – so I was happy to receive hot food for a change.
Now on to the main story.
The Butter Chicken.
It was tender – each piece broke off with ease.
The chicken was well smoked, it melted in the mouth and the gravy was rich, thick, creamy with quite a bit of spice, which I don’t believe is needed.
It worked well with the Roomali Roti, but I also chose to have some steamed rice with it and then the spices were felt a lot more.
The 24/7 Dal Makhni was nice, but not the best.
What was wrong with it? It wasn’t “makhni” enough.
The ghee/butter flavour that needed to come through did not. The dal makhni was spicy too.
Although, nothing beats home-made dal makhni – so I would hate to compare – but as someone who is brought up on these flavours, somehow, comparisons just happen.
Taste memories don’t differentiate between who is cooking it – they crave what they like.
On a side note – my pet peeve with most restaurants. Making food spicy doesn’t make it better. Sometimes, I feel many places use spice to mask off food which isn’t great.
My personal belief is that if we wish to be true to flavours, then adding extra spiciness to dishes where it’s not needed kills the experience.
So, is Goila Butter Chicken Mumbai’s best butter chicken? I would recommend it those who are craving a spicy version of butter chicken, but is it the best?
I won’t label it as that.
I need to try more places to compare where these flavours stand for me.
Want to help me?
If you can recommend places in Mumbai to try butter chicken then that would be great. Let me know and I will hunt that place down.