Orion is the kind of place you take your wife to when you’ve forgotten your anniversary, but you’re too broke for diamonds. Or if you’re on that one particularly special date. Or if you’re a greedy little shit like me and are simply looking for some serious gourmet debauchery.
If you’re about Baner road (or not), this is one place that deserves a visit, especially given how reasonably priced it is. It’s conveniently located, has good parking arrangements, and the tastefully done decor comes for free, too.
My evening started with a Cinematic, one of the better whisky-based cocktails I’ve had in a while; the Cinnamon giving it a significant aftertaste and balancing the whisky real well, too. at less than ₹300 a pour, I was all for it.
Next came the Indian Spiced Pumpkin Veloute (₹200), a delicately flavoured, almost creamy-textured pumpkin soup that was worth calling seconds on. And we did.
To think that would’ve been the best soup that evening, boy was I wrong! Orion’s ‘Soup de grâce’© – The three mushroom soup (₹220) was an earthy, flavor-packed delicious concoction, almost reminiscent of cappuccino. I now have a new favourite soup.
We were in for appetisers next, the first of which came the Paneer Makhmali roll with Beetroot foam (₹280). Mind the beetroot foam, the Michelin-star chef really loved his nitrogen food foamer! The vibrant colours defied the ever-so-subtle flavors that the preparation packed. A classic appetiser if you ask me.
The Kandhari Chicken (₹260) was soft and succulent and packed with flavor but somehow I felt that the size of the chicken could’ve been moderated to make it a little more palatable.
Up next was the choicest and juiciest of deep-fried golden prawns served with – you guessed it chilli FOAM. That foamer was on overdrive. And the results were fantastic – none of the fuss – no chilli flakes et al, and all of the drama. At little over ₹300 a pop, this was a definite winner for me.
Having survived off Giovanni Rana’s line of pastas for a year while in the UK, I’d developed something of a baseline that I was really hoping their Ravioli would match up to. And boy. did it. Pumpkin Ravioli (₹300) like you’ve never had before, and dripping in sage butter. The kind that’ll change your perspective on the humble pumpkin. ‘Nuff said.
Same story with the Smoked Chicken Ravioli (₹350)- the delicate tang from the pepper pesto married with the creamy texture of the ravioli was a match made in culinary heaven.
The Katsu Kare (₹320) was a welcome blend of fresh asian flavors, the only problem being the amount of rice served to balance it out. And it did need some balancing out. Probably the only thing that didn’t work for me that evening, and just because the rest of it was all delicate-like and this one came on too strong.
The dessert was a welcome change after the Katsu Kare – another Molecular Gastronomy take on the uber-popular Shahi Tukda (₹300). Best had immediately as the rabdi is poured so the texture of the bread is retained. Probably a tad expensive in light of everything else here if you’ll ask me, but still, quality stuff.
Oh, wait. Almost forgot the Moongdal Halwa Paratha (chef special @₹220). Burrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp. ‘scuuuse me! Totes worth making room for after ALL that grub if you should know.
All in all –
Food – 5/5
Ambience – 4.5/5
Service – 4/5
Value for money – N/A (invited, but amazingly reasonable given the quality of food)