Macchiato Pizzeria Grill & Bar at Belapur is your one-stop Italian food-fix

Macchiato in Belapur stirred a lot of interest in me when I realised that it was rated 4 star at Zomato. Moreover, owner chef Manoj Rai who has been a part of various competitions and cooking shows invited me to try their new menu, and I couldn’t say no. Located conveniently at sector 15 on Palm Beach Road, right after crossing the majestic NMMC building with a huge Indian flag and the Belapur cross-road; it was a pleasant drive to the restaurant. The ambience is retro with brick walls, wooden sofas and dim lights. It has been given a very rustic finish just like a Woodside inn or café. Valet parking is available.

Macchiato Belapur, best Italian restaurant , Belapur

Chicken Meshew

We were received by restaurant manager Sanjay Singh and soon were joined by Chef Manoj Rai. Chef Manoj Rai is a humble, down-to-earth person who was treating us more like his personal guests. Over some wine and excellent conversation, we gathered a lot of information about the restaurant and his life. Macchiato was started 6 months back with an aim to serve authentic Italian food to the customers. Not to sound clichéd, we did actually taste some good Italian food. Chef Manoj believes in serving good food. He feels that tasty and healthy food will keep his regular customers coming back. I realised he didn’t put much effort in plating and presentation. To that he said, “I want people to enjoy their meal like they would at home.” May be that makes a difference when people come looking for comfort food at his restaurant.

Macchiato, Belapur, review

Mushroom Risotto

I would like to give a special mention to the Mushroom Risotto that he served us that evening. He served it in a flat dish and it tasted very nourishing and creamy. Usually Risotto is served in a deep dish. To that he said, “I do not want the heat to get trapped inside and overcook the rice.” He is very particular and passionate about the food that he serves. He said he uses three types of mushrooms to create the texture. Mushroom stalk is used to render the risotto a natural brownish beige colour. Mushroom paste is used to create the creaminess of the risotto. And slices of Porcini Mushooms are added to give it the required visual appeal and taste. I and OH just loved it and would like to return for the same to Macchiato in future, however far it might be.

Macchiato, Belapur, food review

Lamb Luyala Kebab

The evening started by placing orders for our drinks. Though they have a list of cocktails but we decided to stick to the wines. We were given a bread basket with garlic dip in the beginning while we waited for our drinks to arrive. The bread wasn’t warm and the garlic dip tasted more like a mint chutney. I feel it can be improved. Whiff of warm bread, some butter and creamy dips can heighten the appetite for many.

Zaatar, Turkish flat bread

Zaatar, Turkish flat bread

The new menu includes Turkish starters and lists various lamb and chicken kebabs. We tried Lamb Luyala Kebab made from lamb mince with garlic, pistachio paste served with Zaatar, flat bread which is a distant cousin of pitta bread. It had a touch of spice and was very flavourful. The kebabs were soft and were served with salad. Next we tried the Chicken Meshew that is grilled chicken leg marinated with garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, served with salad and Muhammara sauce made with roasted peppers. It had a very earthy flavour and a grainy texture.  But it was very delicious. The yogurt based marinate on Chicken Meshew made it pretty appetising. These kebabs weren’t very spicy but had flavours of Turkish herbs and spices.

Best Italian restaurant in Vashi

Seabass Carpacio

Chef wanted us to try an exclusive Italian starter made from raw fish called Seabass Carpaccio. It was another favourite of the evening. Paper thin slices of raw fish stuffed with herbs, rolled and was pounded. It was served with cherry tomatoes, rocket leaves, rock salt and a drizzle of olive oil. Absolutely fantastic! I love Sashimi and the Italian cousin of raw fish was equally delectable.

Later, we proceeded towards the main course.

During his conversation with us, Chef spoke about how people think that pasta and pizza are unhealthy. He felt that it is because of lack of knowledge and nutritional education. Every food is good if it is prepared with fresh ingredients and is eaten in moderation. He spoke about the regular food workshops he conducts for adults and children so that they can learn to prepare delicious Italian food at home.  I was pretty happy to know that he wanted to promote healthy eating among individuals. His next workshop is on 13th June. It will include hands-on demo on creating healthy Italian food and will cost Rs. 1499. For more information you can connect with the restaurant manager Sanjay Singh at 8108186003.

Learn to cook Italian food, navi mumbai

Chef Manoj Rai conducting food workshops

Coming back to our dinner, the main course included Mushroom Risotto, Mushroom Tortellini in red sauce and herb crusted red snapper. I have already stated that the risotto was the star of the evening. The Tortellini (handmade pasta) was stuffed with mushrooms. The sauce was tangy and a little creamy. It wasn’t Arabbiatta or Marinara but Chef’s own creation. I really loved the way he feels happy innovating new sauces. Though, personally I am a diehard fan of Arabbiatta and might have been biased while tasting the dish. The sauce didn’t go very well with me as it was on the sour side. I felt the pasta was a little undercooked. Though, it didn’t interfere with the flavours.

Macchiato Belapur review

Mushroom Tortellini

The last and final main of the evening was the deliciously soft red snapper with crusted herb. It was served with sautéed vegetables and was an instant hit with us. I would recommend it to everyone who love eating fish.

Fish dish,

Red Snapper

For dessert, Chef got us a Cheesecake. The uniqueness of this cheesecake was that it was steamed and not baked. I tasted a steamed cheesecake for the first time in my life. It was good. It was served right out of a fridge that somehow marred its unique flavour. Otherwise it was a decent closure to our epic meal. We spent nearly three hours eating and chatting at Macchiato with Manoj Rai.

steamed, cheese, cake

Steamed cheese cake

At Macchiato the food is simple yet delicious. The price points are between Rs. 199 to Rs. 499 per dish, which doesn’t make a hole in your pocket. An average meal for two will come between Rs. 1000 to Rs. 1500.

Will I go there again? Of course, to eat Mushroom Risotto and Seabass Carpaccio. I even want to try their pizzas next time. Have you eaten at Macchiato? What do you feel about their food? Do leave a comment below.

About MumbaiGloss

Parimita Chakravorty is an author, blogger, features writer and a communications specialist. She has written for various popular magazines and websites related to beauty, fashion, jewellery and lifestyle, including HAIR India, Femina.in, BeBeautiful.in, Hello, etc. She has also contributed to various youth blogs and magazines. Her book ‘Look Stunning At Any Size’ has been well appreciated and received by the readers. Currently, she is part of India’s leading IT brand and takes care of their internal communications. Parimita is also working towards bringing awareness about Endometriosis in India; a silent epidemic which is consuming a lot of lives. She manages a page ‘Endometriosis India Files’ where patients discuss their condition and diagnosis.
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