Hard Rock Café is one of my favorites, no matter what city I am living in. I recently had a great time at the Summer of the Legends Festival at HRC Pune. And now they have a Latin Food Festival going on. It is pure coincidence that this coincides with Mexican Food Fiesta here at kamalkitchen.com.
Hard Rock Café can mix a mean drink for sure. Since we are set to party #LikeALatino, no surprises that tequila is the star of this festival. The special drinks menu features Jose Cuervo which is one of the most popular tequila brands in the world.
Call it my weird sense of humor, or just a whimsy, but I chose the time of 5 PM to go to Hard Rock Café. So instead of singing ‘ It’s 5 o’clock somewhere’, I could sing ‘ One Round with Jose Cuervo’. LOL. So Ok, that is not rock music, but come on, I just had to say that.
Anyhoo, let’s take a gander at this special menu. When it comes to margaritas, I prefer the old fashioned lime margarita. I am not big on the pomegranate or mango margaritas and such, mostly because stronger fruits like cranberry or pomegranate mask the taste of tequila itself . The key to any good cocktail is balance, I think.
When I ordered the Pome and Malta Margarita, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Surprisingly, it had muddled orange and fresh pomegranate seeds. The tequila flavor was most prominent. This is a must try for tequila fans. Adding fresh fruit sangria style seems to be really ‘in’ these days. The drink was served in a mason jar, another trend, and was liberally salted on the rim. No complaints there.
Liquid Lust with white wine, cranberry, orange and lime was also very mild on the cranberry and the wine added a different element.
The above two drinks are served on rocks, and the Spotty is a frozen drink. So frozen margarita lovers will like this. Fresh Kiwi is used here and this drink has subtle and tangy Kiwifruit flavors.
The Cranberry and Lychee Margarita again surprised me pleasantly. Lychee is the dominant flavor, and chopped dried cranberries add color and a surprise sweet and sour bite to this drink.
They also have shots or shooters for the more adventurous amongst us. These are made with the Jose Cuervo Reposado (slightly aged).
All these drinks can also be ordered minus the tequila – I tried them both ways and they are all equally good.
Now to the food – what do you expect from Mexican food? Bold flavors come to mind, and the Samosette of Spicy Corn and Cheddar Cheese will start you off right. These are samosas or triangles made with phyllo pastry and have quite a bite to them. The pesto dip served with them is equally zesty.
Red Rod Fries are another great starter. Fries are tossed in a spice mix and drizzled with a sweet sauce, served with cheese dip and salsa. You couldn’t go wrong with these and kids will especially love these.
You can read about the Char Grilled Tex- Mex Chicken Skewers over at MovieRecipe.
I had the option of a veggie burrito or Brazilian BBQ Grilled Veg Skewers. I went with the skewers and they turned out to be a great choice. This dish offers something very different from your usual choices. Cottage Cheese or Paneer skewers are basted with barbecue sauce and grilled. These are served on a bed of grilled fajita veggies drizzled with chimichuri sauce.
I liked both the barbecue sauce and the chimi churi sauce so much that I ordered extra and ate my fries with them. The barbecue sauce was smoky with a slight tang of ACV and just a hint of sweetness. The chimichuri had an interesting twist that I will let you tell me about.
All this zesty food tasted great washed down with the special drinks. This kind of meal deserves a dessert. And the Sizzlin’ Skillet Scorched Brownie did not disappoint. The brownie itself was moist and tasted of chocolate which is no small surprise. Most brownies I have tasted locally generally taste like sawdust. So yes, this was a welcome change. And there were some very subtle spices in the background.
The excellent coffee blend at HRC Pune provided a fitting end to the evening. Our server Pratap kept an eye on us and made sure we had refills and everything we wanted. Chef Sardeep came over for a chat and gave us some valuable insights into the Fiesta menu.
Now the music – the Latin fest is going to feature some special tracks to get you in the mood. So expect to hear Shakira, Enrique, Santana and company while you are demolishing that Latin fest.
This Fiesta is on till September 6 so there is plenty of time for you to head over!