Summer has just begun to peak in here in Mumbai, stifling heat and people are looking up to restaurants for respite in the form of light salads & berry coolers. Chili's at Powai is doing exactly the opposite, bringing more meat to the menu ! How thoughtful of them to reassure us with Buffalo meat while Beef has been done away with.

Unfold the discrete menu and the foremost sight is plethora of world beers. That's a welcome addition. The beer based concoctions like Watermelon & Beer, Raspberry & beer & Frozen Beer Rita although sound innovative, should be best kept at arm's length. The watermelon one is marginally acceptable but the raspberry is a strict no no and so is the Beer Rita. 

The better part of the menu begins from this point onwards. The Chicken Mince Burger is sure to wow anyone and everyone with its thick juicy patty. The crunch element which was until now restricted to crispy iceberg lettuce is a notch higher due to the addition of thin crisps. The new assorted set of sliders are equally remarkable. We sampled two of their variations - Buffalo Meat and Chicken. The subtly flavoured red meat patty was almost medium rare cooked while the Chicken sliders were yet again tucked with a couple of crisps to provide a different texture.

A few light eats now make an appearance in Chili's menu via the grilling process. Aimed at providing one person gourmet meal, this section is bound to work with health conscious folks. We sampled a gorgeous fillet of Mango-Chile Basa which was glazed with a spicy habanero mango sauce and garnished with chopped avocado and mango. The flaky fish fillet was cooked to perfection while its taste oddly complimented the glaze on top. The side serving of Chipotle Rice though flavourful does not work well along with the mango and the fish. The dish is also available in a Chicken variation. Grilled Chicken Salad & Margarita Grilled Chicken are the other dishes from this section.

The desserts gets a minimal revamp with addition of moist Carrot Cake while the Molten Chocolate Cake makes way for a Cinnamon Molten version. We called for the latter and were taken aback by its aroma as it sat on the table. The caramel drizzle, upside down cake and scoop of vanilla are all plated up meticulously for a vote gathering Instagram post. Cut the cake and out oozes the cream. The flavours are just stupendous leaving no human senses untouched.

The changes to the menu are most welcome. Not only is the menu redesigned with an ease to identify various sections, it is also better organized with fewer images. We really hope that some of these dishes are carried forward to the main permanent menu. 

*This visit to Chili's was by invitation.


Chili's needs no intro, It's Tex Mex and bit expensive to be true for an american fast food joint. Chili's powai is located on that posh street on Hiranandani Gardens after D-Mart. It's noisy, chittery-chattery all around and has 90s pop music playing through at high decibels. Conversation are difficult and so is finding any of the service staff. The staff is either too less or is just instructed to get back to the kitchen after each service. 

Soft Taco Shells with Crispy Chicken Filling.

Soft Taco Shells with Crispy Chicken Filling.

Chili's food was pure fast food affair, Something i haven't had since a long time. Appetizers were served in quick succession. Tandoori Paneer Quesadilla is very cleverly devised nugget of paneer and mozarella cheese. Both the textures compliment each other really well. Southwest Caesar Salad was bit dud, too much of cheap lettuce leaves and barely any chicken. Chicken Crispers were neat long strip of fried bread crumbed chicken but served a bit late and had lost that crispy coating. Fajitas were hearty and one of the best dish of the night. Chicken Burger too was massive with a generous steak / fillet. The best dish of the night was the last one - Crispy Chicken Tacos. The staff suggested that we go for a soft shell tacos and we did. Not too soft but average. Loads of chicken strips, iceberg bits, tabasco all in that one taco is real goodness of what fast food is about. They also serve a small portion of mexican rice & fried beans along with it. 

To sum up the experience, Chili's deliver the goods at a slightly steep price. If you're particular about ambience and prompt service, then this might not be the right place for you.

AuthorAssad Dadan