Momo I am is one of the most promising tibetian restaurants in the city. The first outlet near Lords is immensely popular among the youngsters, the sole reason being the amazing momos. With the new outlet near Chinar Park, they are all set on a new venture. Now, what makes Momo I Am so diverse from all other places in the city serving momo? Well, there are several reasons to it.
Firstly, besides focussing only on the mainstream steamed, fried or pan-fried momos, they have introduced stir fry Momo, satay Momo, hangover spicy momos and specially the T- momos, all of which are exclusively available here. Also, they are the first in Kolkata to introduce the concept of steamed bao. Secondly, unlike other restaurants, their forte is not only the same tibetian and chinese, but also certain thai dishes, thereby not restricting themselves to a certain field. Thirdly, the new quirky decor is quite impressive with the spray paintings done on the walls and the wooden furniture. Thus, this place has given the best of it in every field, be it their food, decor or hospitality.
The new outlet is located close to Chinar park crossing, near the Viceroy hotel, opposite Koshe Kosha. I was invited here for a food tasting event. Being a huge fan of the steamed momos and thupka of the outlet at Lord’s, I was really excited about my visit here and it turned out to a memorable one. I was charmed by the ambience and left amazed with each dish that was served.
The mocktails which were served are :
1. Jango – This one was slightly tangy and sweet with the blend of pineapple and orange juice with fresh mint and lime.
2. Brucelee – This was a mix of processed cucumber, cilantro roots and lime, shaken with cranberry and orange juice. This one was quite sweet and refreshing
3. Phuket all – This was a blend of muddled basil, lemongrass, lime, cranberry and pineapple juice. This one was sweet, chilled and refreshing
All the mocktails were served in a mug, which is quite unique and goes by the theme. Also, one can enjoy the sweet and tangy mocktails with the spicy food.
Next was to come the amazing food which did make me fall in love with this place.
1. Hangover spicy momos – All three versions, i.e. , veg, chicken and pork were served. The presentation was quite interesting. Unlike dumping the momos in a plate in a random way, they were presented beautifully, each on a soup spoon, over a layer of spicy mashed potato. The momos had a thin layer of dough filled with a delicious stuffing of minced ingredients ( veg / chicken / pork ). The momos were steamed and then stir fried with spring onions, in home made chilly oil, and further topped with a dollop of schezwan mayo. The momos were too delicious and tasted heavenly. The soft momos with the spicy stuffing seemed to melt in my mouth, with a burst of flavours. If you want to try something new then this can’t be missed.
2. Chicken shyafaley – This is a popular Tibetian dish and can be termed as a ‘tibetian pizza’ owing to its shape and appearance. It is a flat bread which is rolled into a circular shape and fried. The bread is stuffed with a filling of minced chicken ( or pork) and cooked with wine, sesame oil, onions and garlic. This was one of its kind and I had never tasted something like this before. The bread was very crispy was the minced chicken stuffing had an amazing irresistible flavour, something that would leave you craving for more. I was more than impressed by the shyafaley. Generally people would prefer momos or a thupka on visiting this place, but once you have the shyafaley, you would come back again and again just for this !
3. Mini bao – A bao is a steamed bun and somewhat represents a taco, in a miniature version, in terms of appearance. The steamed bun is folded into a semicircle and stuffed with chicken, fish, pork or veg. I had chicken, fish and pork baos. The chicken bao was stuffed with crispy chicken, pickled cucumber, lettuce and teriyaki with roasted peanuts. The crispness of the chicken and the softness of the bao were an amazing match. The fish bao was stuffed with crispy batter fish, lettuce and home made tartar sauce. The fish was crispy, soft and juicy while the tartar sauce was spicy and somewhat tangy. The pork bao was stuffed with double cooked, crispy pork belly, plum sauce and mayo. This was definitely the best among the lot. The sweetestness of the plum sauce was perfect and the pork had an irresistible taste. The concept of bao is unknown to all of us. So try them over here and experience its awesomeness!
4. Japanese panko crumbed prawn – Oh my god ! This was one hell of a dish which can’t be judged. The chef deserves a salute as this was definitely one of the best panko crumbed prawns I had till date. The coating was very crispy, followed by the delicate succulent prawn that did give me foodgasm ! I was left speechless with this. It was really impressive to watch a tibetian joint showing such tremendous expertise in diverse fields.
5. Japanese panko crumbed fish – Now what’s more, the fish came next and being a bong and an ardent fish lover, this too pleased my taste buds. The fresh, succulent fish with the crispy coating was something to die for. The dips of mayo and schezwan mayo did additionally lift up the flavours
6. Marinated fried pork – The pork meat was sliced into small pieces, along with pork fat and fried. The fried pieces were tossed in a soy sauce with bell peppers and served. I liked the portion of the dish, which was quite huge. The pork was crispy and juicy. I enjoyed munching this !
7. Bangkok street noodle soup chicken – The soup was served in a huge bowl and looked amazing. I can well assure you that this kind of a dish isn’t served anywhere else in Kolkata. The soup was something to die for. It was loaded with pad thai noodles, in a coconut based soup with kafirr lime, galangal, red curry paste, lemon grass, lime and coriander. It also contained generous portions of shredded chicken, babycorn, broccoli, etc topped with an omlet and crushed peanuts. The broth was spicy and tangy. It is a wholesome meal for a single person and I loved it !
8. T-momo combo – Before going into details, let me just give a briefing on T-momo. Initially yeast is mixed with hot water and added to a mixture of flour, baking soda, oil and salt, and made into a dough. The dough is rolled and cut into smaller sections, folded and the ends are joined together. It is then steamed or fried ! Thus, this basically doesn’t match with the concept of what we have of a typical momo. The T-momos served here had an amazing texture and tasted sweet. They were served along with a clear chicken soup, a spicy dip and a side of chicken or pork shyapta. The clear soup was quite good. The shyapta was done really well, specially the pork one. The momo when dipped into the shyapta, tasted amazing !
Overall, Momo I Am can definitely be termed as a hidden gem. People are still unaware of the unique and distinct cuisines which they serve. Though focussed on momos, they haven’t restricted themselves. This place has made a successful attempt to give tibetian food a new dimension. From this experience, I can say with assurance that no other tibetian restaurant in the city can stand in comparison to this ! I would recommend all my readers to visit Momo I am and hope this place to open more outlets in the city of joy !