Food Review: Sammy Sosa's menu, serving and service will force you to say... es fantástico

One of the most popular Mexican restaurants of Mumbai has redesigned the menu with new variants and offerings. In an exclusive chat, the founder of the decade old Sammy Sosa shares his thoughts and views of their redefined ideology.

Food Review: Sammy Sosa's menu, serving and service will force you to say... es fantástico

On a Tuesday evening, I along with my friend walk into this Mexican restaurant referred to by many friends. Just like me, he too had never visited this place and we decided to fill ourselves with something new for our taste buds. It is just when the menu arrived, I understood that I would need help to understand the objective behind the vast offerings and choose some. We called for someone to assist and there came Virat Kapoor, the founder of Sammy Sosa. After a brief introduction, he said, “When we started off with a concept of the restaurant, we had a much smaller cafe style restaurant in mind. Over time, as the brand developed and we got a positive response we knew we had to adapt to a proper dine-in restaurant. We created a fusion in between fine dining and cafe set up called the ‘Fun Dining’. It’s all about coming to Sosa with your friends, family or even colleagues and enjoying some fantastic food with warm service and not to forget your favourite pint of chilled beer. Our aim is to create a home-like atmosphere in terms of comfort and the warmth teamed up with comfort food. Food that makes you smile and feel happy to eat,” and there began the dinner.

Talk about authentic Mexican restaurants in the city and one name which will definitely ring a bell is Sammy Sosa. After serving customers happily for more than a decade, the team decided to serve new flavours from Mexico on the platter, this time with a new health-conscious food menu and an extensive 45 beer menu.

Sourced from England, Germany, Japan, Australia, Belgium and China, the beer menu lets you guzzle the drink giving you a new high with the chance you always wanted. The most popular beer on the menu is Tsingtao, a Chinese beer, made by Europeans in the 20th Century which currently holds 2.8 per cent of the global beer market.

Sammy Sosa’s new food menu is even more exciting and now comes infused with vegan and gluten-free options for health-conscious folks. A must try on this menu is the Mango Tequila soy, which is made with chunks of grilled soy, tossed in dry red chillies, tomatoes, garlic, lime and fresh slices of raw mango. Besides this, the chef and founders have also revived old classics like their Quesadillas, Nachos, Tacos and their all-time favourite salsa sauces.

Talking about this new move, founder Virat Kapoor said, “When we were planning the new menu our intention was to improve the techniques that we were using for the old menu itself. We were decided on the fact that we did not want to remove any of the old favourites on our menu. Going further we were very aware of the rapidly evolving nature of the customers today, both in terms of a healthier eating lifestyle and a more environment-friendly approach. Hence we introduced many of all our favourites with Vegan options, using Soy as an alternative to Meats and other Dairy based products. Additionally, we gave all our patrons healthier substitutes of carbs like unpolished brown rice, couscous, and Sweet potatoes to go along with the mains. We have added Sugar-Free and Flour Free desserts as well to the menu. These desserts are in Collaboration with a young and dynamic Dessert chef by the name of Ashna Yerunkar.”

When it comes to the new interiors, the new Sammy Sosa comes with a rustic theme. The walls are grey with an unfinished look and feel, with painted skulls hanging on the walls which are an inspiration taken directly from the Mexican festival, Día de Los Muertos. Sharing his thought on the focus of the new look and feel, Virat added, “With the reinvention of Sammy Sosa after a decade of operations, our aim was to reach out to a new audience of customers as well, while Mexican food has its own appeal, the Indian market is not totally welcoming to an out and out Mexican restaurant. The main USP of Sammy Sosa is the Intent. Our sincere intent is to make that that every guest who walks out of our restaurant has a smile on his face and a happy tummy. Yes along with that we also make sure that we use fresh ingredients and use the best quality of the product. All our staff put Love and effort to ensure that the entire experience of Sammy Sosa is a fulfilling both in terms of taste and feel.”

Besides the food and the décor, what impressed me the most about this restaurant was Virat’s passion to ensure the guests feel at home and learn about the nuances of Mexican cuisine. The man was on his feet all the while, hopping from one table to another with a smile, engaging with the people. Despite knowing that customizing the menu will be a hassle for the kitchen staff, he offered many customers, a change they preferred in the dish. My curiosity leads to this question and I asked him about the passion of introducing Mexico in Mumbai, to which he said, “One line comes to mind ‘Ripe like an Avacado.’ We think today's consumers are much more aware of what's happening around the world and follow global trends. With the surge in use of social media people are more curious and open to trying out experiences which they would not have earlier. This sort of curiosity has made the Indian market a very fruitful one for new concepts and cuisines. Today one can eat all types of world cuisines right here in the city and that too not just in fine dine concepts but in-home delivery and smaller casual concepts too. Ten years ago, no one could have thought that anything like a pop-up restaurant would have caught the fancy of so many people.”

This was perhaps one of the longest and the most satisfying dinners I have had in a long time. I had to completely agree with the thoughts of many customers I saw, who came there purely to enjoy the place again, as a visit once to Sammy Sosa will make you a frequent visitor. This place is addictive, both for the food and service!