MEWS – An idea that took almost a year to conceptualize and create by three young professionals Zainab, Neeshay and Aamir and their team of architects, food consultants and designers is housed on of the most desired and busy streets of Karachi on this side of the bridge – E Street!
With the positive hype on social media for this place, it was only but natural that our gastronomic gig was played at Mews last night. As they start their ‘PM’ service at 7:30pm we walked in precisely five minutes after that. Courteously met by a wrought iron gate that opened into a cobbled street leading our way up to a classical wall fountain at the far end of the mews, it was serene, calm and comforting as we walked on the cobbled floor right till the end of the narrow street. Whilst the front end of the mews were enclosed in a bright blue wooden enclave the back end is more for those who want to enjoy the serenity.
Our group of six settled down in extremely comfortable seats at the front end of the restaurant and absorbed all the eclecticism that came our way. A bar, coffee percolators, sloping wooden ceilings and wired fluorescent orange hanging lights were a treat to look at, what we did not realize was that a waiter was already by our side waiting to take our orders.
With specific instructions regarding drinks and order of dishes we ordered from a well designed, wittily quipped menu consisting of about 22 savory dishes. We were informed that this is only a prelude and the regular menu will be rolled out in about a month.
Although the breadbasket was hidden at the back end of the menu, we wanted to nibble on something until the rest of our dishes came so we ordered that as our nibbler. An assortment of savory and sweet warm bread pieces came to us after about 15 minutes of waiting. Truffle fries with Sriracha Mayo were also placed before us in a tin glass lined with patterned butter paper.
Return Factor – Bread Assortment – perhaps savory only would be more desirable 5/10
Truffle Fries – Had faint hints of truffle oil and a bright orange Sriracha plopped over the fries 6/10
Whilst the table next to us suffered from some serious service issues, we were only wondering what was in store for us; after what seemed like a long wait our mains started to come through. Most of the food items were presented on flat wooden blocks and our first block was a shareable portion of ‘Wings and Ribs’ – ten wings with three spice levels and flavors of juicy fries and some rather sad looking ribs. Whilst the honeyed wings were nice, buffalo and habanero were tongue numbingly spicy.
Return Factor – ‘Wings & Ribs’ – Management needs to seriously revisit the spice level, however they were juicy and tender and the dipping sauce next was flavorsome. Fried whole onion was an aesthetic up – 7/10
Whilst I ran around the place clucking away for my taste buds to return to normal after ingesting the green habanero wing, my family was already stripping pizza slices from the oblong medium crusted pizza. The dough seemed rather estranged from the toppings and heavily studded melted cheese yet my kids pleasured away.
Return Factor – ‘Hot Stuff Plank Pizza’ – the plank shape might be the only differentiating factor, otherwise there is better pizza available just down the street – 6/10
Next on the road was a bowl of glutinous rice topped with Korean fried beef strips and a shiny yellow centered fried egg. The Korean Bowl was a welcome addition to the usual café’ style food items and certainly a mouthful of delicious tender meat.
Return Factor – Korean Beef Bowl – A hearty meal for one, recommended to those who like Orient style meals – 8/10
In between the taxing service issues of serving warm soda drinks with no ice in sight, we dug into the beef burger and a roast chicken sandwich. I admit I was full to the brim but took a chunk of a well-toasted multigrain baguette sandwiching together artichokes, grilled chicken and griddled vegetables. Although not a burger person but my son insisted that I take a bite so with ‘No Fuss’ I bit into a medium rare chunky patty.
Return Factor – Roast Chicken on Multigrain Bread – Griddled vegetables were too crunchy for me however on the whole the sandwich was a typical deli style – Highly recommended – 8/10
No Fuss Burger – was plain and simple and I perhaps would have liked it more if the doneness did not show hues of pink – 7/10
We ended the gig with a single serving of the very famous Banoffee pie laced with Nutella and a swish from the wallet.
Offering an AM and PM menu along with a Hi-Tea option, this place is well thought out aesthetically and gastronomically yet like all other restaurants it is possibly facing painful teething problems. An evening spent at Mews was enriching more for the ambiance rather than the food yet with receptive owners I am confident this place is going to do well.
F-42, E street, Block 4
Mon – Sun 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
& 7:30 – 11:30 pm
- The writer is an avid foodie who blogs on www.capturebyst.com and can be followed on Twitter @capturebyst
–Photographs courtesy Karachista.com