Monday, April 03, 2006

Watering Hole of the Month : Saltwater Grill

Location: On Marine Drive, right side next to the sea.
Budget for two: Rs 2500(includes food)
Open from: 1700 hrs to 0100 hrs
Waiting Scene: it’s the current hot spot in town, so reservation is called for, though the bar area is a free for all. There are 120 covers and there is still waiting, now what does that say about a place.
Music: Lounge
Owners: Riyaz Amlani, Varun Sahani, Kiran Salskar

Chef Viraf Patel & Naveen Kotyankar, Restaurant Manager

Tulleeho Besides the Fact that it’s next to the Bay, does the name SALT WATER GRLL have any other significance?
Chef Viraf: Proximity to the sea (salt water) did activate the nomenclature but also the facts that SALT and WATER are the two most essential ingredients in making food. The menu features a lot of grilled items and subject to availability we have a good variety of seafood to boast about (Norwegian Salmon, Australian mussels ...). The name is very intrinsic to what our place is all about.
Tulleeho What makes the Salt water Grill experience Unique?
Naveen: We have a very non-exaggerated menu. Expect precisely what is written on the menu. We have a daily special menu, which features the catch of the day.
It’s a chilled out natural ambience, in the open air overlooking the sea as well as the Queens necklace coupled with the soothing serenade of lounge music makes for the all round relaxing experience which is a rarity in our city. This all makes it a unique outing in Mumbai.

Tulleeho . What are the ‘Specials’ at SWG?
Naveen: The watermelon caipirojka is simply the best in Mumbai, not surpassing the Green Apple martini. We have the Plum infused vodka which is brilliant on the rocks and just as good is the Lemon Grass Vodka. Infusion of the plum and the lemongrass is done over 3 weeks and it is well worth the wait. Herb flavor vodkas, such as lavender and basil are must tries as well. Gewürztraminer (Californian) and chardonnay are the high selling wines from the list of 70 wines.
Tulleeho Ambience at SWG comprises of…
Naveen: Beauty in Simplicity is the key feature, Ambience is very natural, and there are sand sculptors, hammocks to lounge on, and straw umbrella shades, a small boat converted into a sofa!!! And all of it overlooking the beautiful Bay of Mumbai.
Tulleeho What’s the trend change in Mumbai where food and beverage is concerned? Are the ‘Burbians’ easy to convince in making the trip all the way to marine drive for a drink?
Naveen: Over the last six years Bombay people have realized that it is just as much prestigious to eat at stand-alone outlets as it is in 5 star hotels. People have become more open to trying out new foods and drinks. Wine culture has picked up. Eating and trying out cuisines has become an integral part of our lifestyle. In the bid to try and experiment with new cuisines, food styles, ambiance and experience consumers do not mind undertaking the journey from the suburbs town. Despite the fact that the majority of the clientele is from the town side, we have a fair share of people from the suburb.
Tulleeho. What makes SWG a wow experience for its patrons?
Naveen: We have happy hours all day, from opening to closing which does not really mean that we give the old ‘one free on one purchase’ but the fact that the experience no matter when you come in will be a happy one. A guest will always go home satisfied. Everything about us is wow.
Tulleeho What have you tried to inculcate in service team?
Naveen: It’s important that they provide pleasurable service to their customers and be comfortable while doing so; that they keep everything simple and yet are constantly attentive to guest needs. They have a sense of belonging to SWG and a feeling of pride in what they do and an understanding that there is a constant scope of improvement. We have told the guys to open all doors for the guest. Get into conversation with him, understand his needs and comply with demands. But suggest not what the guest wants to have but what he might want to have but just doesn’t know about it. Up sell doesn’t have to be selling something of higher value or pushing dead stock, up selling the experience rather than a single item is much more productive in both the long term and the short. It’s all about the attitude.
Tulleeho Open air, nice breeze: I loved it, but what do you do during the rainy season.

Naveen: Well making sure that the sea is visible from the lounges even when the total area is covered up was on the priority list right after keeping the area and people inside SWG dry during the torment of the rains. Therefore during the monsoons, tall poles are erected on the beach and plastic and straw sheds extend from the restaurant wall to the beach.
Worked wonders last year and we will rock this season as well. Like I said its wow all through. The rain will not dampen our experience.



Anonymous Ameya said...

Thanks for posting images! Had heard a lot about it, now the pictures make me visit this place too!! Cheers...

5:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey gr8 place dude, n that too in mumbai, i have event management company, ill surely do some parties there, 6C Entertainment - 9819055011 - Anuj Agarwal, cheers buddy

11:20 AM  

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