Restaurant review: Chili’s Grill & Bar Powai – perfect for Tex-Mex cuisine lovers

chili Grill and Bar Powai, Mumbai

Mumbaigloss was recently invited to Chili’s Grill & Bar Powai for food tasting. I am a big fan of Tex-Mex cuisine. Having reviewed both Hard Rock Café and TGIF offering this cuisine, I decided to taste food at Chili’s Grill & Bar, Powai this time. TexMex Cuisine India Private Ltd, which has the master franchise rights for American casual dining restaurant chain ‘Chili’s Grill & Bar’ is rapidly expanding it across the country. The flavors of Tex-Mex cuisine are close to the Indian palate and are therefore popular with the food lovers in India. Spices, beans, roasted meat, wraps are familiar territory and conventional restaurant goers are not afraid to try out these dishes.

Chili’s Grill & Bar Powai  is conveniently located on Central Avenue Road in Hiranandani Gardens. You cannot miss this as it is marked by a giant red chili installation at the entrance. The first impression is that it is a casual dining place which is average in capacity. But once you enter, you find that it is fairly large and can easily seat upto 40 people at one go. It has a decent bar area and the décor is apt for the Tex-Mex theme. Music played is usually EDM, Trance, Pop (I love these) but I felt that it didn’t go well with the restaurant theme. But people seemed to enjoy the music. The best part was that the music wasn’t too loud and customers could easily engage in conversations. After all, good food demands some discussions, isn’t it? 🙂 I didn’t see any valet service available during lunch hours. I parked my car on the roadside.

chilis Mumbai, Grill food powai

The waiting staff seemed a little confused in the beginning. They made us sit on a table which was yet to be cleaned. But later everything fell into place as soon as restaurant manager Sharmistha Bhowmick came on the floor. She briefed me about the cuisine and which were the best-selling dishes at their restaurant. We went through the entire menu, understanding various selections and she helped me shortlist the food that we wanted to taste. We asked for customized mini-portions so as not to over eat. Lawrence offered us their best-selling Margarita ‘Presidente’ made from Tequila, Cointreau, and brandy. The salted rim tasted well with the tangy drink which was on the zesty, fruity side (not sweet). Not to be missed! I also loved the idea of Moji-Teas; tea based Mojitos. (In the fruity flavors of Mango, Watermelon, Peach, Orange, etc.) Plan to taste one of them next time.

Margarita Presidente, chilis best selling Margarita, sour drink, fruity drink

We ordered for popular ‘Wings Over Buffalo’ (chicken wings) and Texas Cheese Poppers for starters. We loved the crisp chicken wings drizzled with tangy, spicy sauce though Hard Rock Café’s chicken wings drenched with gun metal sauce (another version of buffalo sauce) fares a notch higher. But these chicken wings can be perfect accompaniment with beer at a relaxed evening hang out. Texas Cheese Poppers were golden brown balls of deep fried mozzarella cheese; sensuous delight for the vegetarians. OH loved them and would like to have them again. I found them a bit oily.  May be, I will try some other veg dish next time.

wings over buffalo, chicken wings,  cheese chili Poppers, fried cheese balls

Next, we ordered for a typical Mexican fare with Chicken Tacos and Chicken Quesadillas. The Tacos were filled with crisp fried chicken shreds tossed in mild flavored sauce served with sour cream and some tomato salad. Those were ok. Chicken Quesadillas were filled with chicken pieces, caramelized onions and cheese. I found them too bland for the Indian palate. Will recommend the Tacos if you want something non-spicy and filling.

Tacos, quiesadillas, chilis powai

How can we not taste Beef chili after visiting a Tex-Mex restaurant? We ordered for one cup of Terlingua Chili which is inspired by the authentic beef chili dish from Texas. The slow cooked beans, minced meat and onion form into rich gravy which was served with garlic bread. We loved the flavorful gravy and felt that it will be a perfect comfort food on a rainy/cold day.  It is mildly spiced as per Indian standards. But the slow cooked ingredients give it a very earthy flavor.

beef chili, chili powai,  Mexican food mumbai

We ordered for a portion of fire-grilled steak and half portion of pork ribs. It was greedy of us but we couldn’t resist after hearing rave reviews about them. The steak was done medium (they don’t do rare) and looked charred at first but when I cut through it the slight fleshy pink layer suggested that it was perfectly cooked. Those who like their steak juicy and rare shouldn’t go for it as it is little on the tougher side. But the smokey grilled flavor is intact and tastes well with a barbeque sauce. The pork ribs were delicious. The meat just fell off the bones. It was perfectly cooked and is definitely on my agenda for the next visit. It was served with corn on the cob and I had to unhappily let it go as I was full to the brim.

steak in Mumbai, good steak in Powai

pork ribs Powai, chilis Mumbai

A meal is incomplete without a dessert. Sharmistha suggested that we try the gooey Molten Lava chocolate cake. But I wanted to try something different, a signature dish, and instead opted for a portion of Peach pie with vanilla ice cream. Warm piece of peach pie dripping in peach syrup topped with vanilla ice cream looked so delish that I completely forgot about how full I was. OH usually doesn’t like desserts but even he dug into a few bites. If you want a fruity, flavored, soft pie then this should be very appetizing.

peach dessert

Drinks and food price range – Rs. 145 to Rs. 595, which means it has something for everyone. Average meal cost for two will range between Rs. 2500 – 3000. (Depending on the food and drinks ordered). If you want to grab a few bites then a cup of Terlingua Chili will cost you approx. Rs 200 and a soup of the day will cost you approx. Rs. 150. They even have healthy options like Spicy Chicken Salad and Grilled Chicken Salad which costs approx. Rs. 300 per serving. The ambience is casual so no one minds if you eat pork ribs, chicken wings or salads with your hands. Don’t worry, wet tissues will be provided.

I would recommend this restaurant to anybody who wants to indulge in delicious, lip smacking food!

Will I go there again? Pretty soon. I want to try their burgers.

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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