Great option for oriental Wok!

If you like to experiment, have some basic idea about preparation of stir-fried wok belonging to oriental cuisine, combination of sauces and condiments with food for taste and you love to eat a lot… this is a perfect place which will offer you quality, taste and value for money.
Even if you don’t… focus on / go through section towards end of the write-up…“How to go about Wok” and follow; you will not be disappointed.
Earlier known as “All Stir Fry” but now “Oriental Connexions”; I have known this place since long actually this place was a trend setter in “Wok concept” in Pune.
Visited Saturday evening. Many familiar faces are still there from old establishment though many have changed as well.
It is same big hall with high sealing and glass top (though during night time glass has no value addition), relatively lower yet decent levels of illumination, wooden furniture, attempt to create somewhat oriental atmosphere using various artifacts and props. About 15-20 averagely spaced tables with possibility of overhearing conversations of neighbors (Oriental score in background not enough to mask it)… Decent ambiance for dining!

Menu:
A La Carte ranging from soups, starters, mains and desserts as well as unlimited Quick Wok (as they call it). Alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages. Nice spread!

Had:
Quick Wok-
Squid in sweet chili and Schezwan sauce with ginger, garlic (overdone). Little chewiness of overdone squid with coating of caramelized sauces; Yummy!
Tofu and vegetables including pak choi, Chinese cabbage, bamboo chute, mushroom, spring onion, red onion, broccoli in Mongolian sauce. Sweet and sourness of sauce, the freshness of tofu; wonderful!
Lamb in pepper BBQ sauce with red onion, pak choi, pickled chilies. Wonderful heat of sauce and chilies with little sourness balanced by red onion; Good!
Chicken and wheat noodles in yellow bean sauce with fresh chilies, bamboo chute, pak choi. Marvelous fragrance and taste with heat; nice!
Chicken in hot bean sauce with ginger, pak choi, spring onion, red onion, pickled chilies.
Chicken salami in pepper BBQ with red onion, carrots, mushroom lots of garlic and little rice as filler. Heat of sauce balanced by carrots and red onion, softness of salami; Great!
Chicken Salami and flat noodles in chili plum sauce with spring onion, red onion, mushroom, bamboo chute and green chilies, lemon juice. Wonderful balance of sweetness of chili plum sauce by lemon juice!
Veggies and Noodles in Thiwah sauce with ginger. The flavor of star anise was magical!

Overall; Great place for Oriental Wok!!!

Summary-
Ambiance: 4
Food taste: 4
Food quality: 4
Service: 4
Value for money: 4
Overall: 4

Tips…
Handover the car at E-Square entry for valet parking; pay Rs100 and collect the ticket. Show the ticket to restaurant staff before billing and get Rs100 discount (need not to worry about parking).
Call, book the table and go (considering rush form cinema which is cyclic and peaks up when a show ends).

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“How to go about Wok” (if you want to maximize the exposure for taste and verity)

There are two counters adjacent to glass kitchen window.

Step 1… get the bowl
Indicate veg or non veg and Ask for the bowl to the chef (bowl with ref rim is for non veg).

Step 2… fill the bowl
Counter on the left has vegetarian stuff and counter on the right has non veg stuff.
Vegies include pak choi, Chinese cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, mushroom, pink cabbage, okra, eggplant, bamboo chute, sweet corn, baby corn, spinach etc
For veggie lovers; Paneer and tofu
For non veg lovers; fish cakes, lamb, chicken, chicken salami, prawns, squid etc
Noodles include rice noodles (fine), white and brown haka, white and brown flat etc
Rice include white and brown
Some important aspects when fill the bowl….
* Never fill a lot of stuff in the bowl. Make sure you are not filling the bowl more than half. This will give you opportunity to try more options without over stuffing yourself or wastage for food.
* Never take too many vegetables at a time limit to 3-4 max to taste in a better way; there is always next round!
* Always rice/noodles at the bottom of the bowl followed by vegies. Meat, poultry, fish etc must be always on the top (they need more time to cook).

Step 3… deciding sauces and condiments (board on the right of glass window)
* There are three category of sauces… Mild including Oystar, Spring Onion and Ginger, Hoisin, Thai peanut ; Spicy (with touch of sweetness) including Sweet chili, Kung Pao, Chili Plum; Hot (some have touch of little sweetness) including Hot bean, Yellow bean, Pepper BBQ, Schezwan, Mongolian, Taiwah.
* Condiments are… Garlic flakes, coriander, fresh ginger, fresh chilies, Crushes peppers, crushes peanuts, lime juice, chili oil, sesame oil etc.
* Mild sauces give you an opportunity to enjoy real taste of the food else spicy/hot mask the real taste unless they have capability to overpower it (at times they do). Select your sauce based on what you want.
* Condiments are good enhancers of taste as well as fragrance. They can also bring balance to the taste (at times not always) which is many a times required to prevent biasing of a taste.
* Starting from mild and moving towards medium and hot can be an option (unless you are dead sure that you want to stick to only one type).

Step 4… Hanover the bowl with instruction of sauces and condiments
When you are done picking and decided the sauce; handover the bowl to chef and tell the sauce (you need to be louder and lean forward because those high flame furnaces as well as stir-frying make a lot of noise and the opening in the glass is not that big).
* If in doubt or you are unable to decide; ask how the preparation will taste with indicated sauce by you (bland, sweet, sour, spicy, hot etc).
* Ask if any condiment will enhance the flavor, taste and fragrance… get it added if you want to!

Step 5… collecting the bowl back
About less than 5 minutes cooking time is required for any kind of wok given but the queue makes it longer at times. You can either collect the bowl back or ask the staff to bring it to your table.
Interesting permutations and combinations
* Beginning with starter type dry preparations (don’t add noodles and rice) and then moving towards mains type (add noodles/rice) is a way which can be tried.
* Choosing some basic vegetables (spring onion, red onion, cabbage, carrots, pak choi etc) plus some condiments (ginger, garlic etc) with mild sauce with request to make extra wet preparation gives you and option of soupy type wok.
* Choosing paneer/tofu or meat/poultry/fish/prawn with some veggies (spring/red onion, pak choi, cabbage etc), condiments and any sauce and request to make dry preparation gives you option for starter type wok.
* Choosing rise/noodles/both, paneer/tofu or meat/poultry/fish/prawn with some available veggies, condiments and any sauce and request to make dry preparation gives you option for mains type wok.
* One can experiment with eggplant, okra, bamboo chute etc (different than usual and adds up for texture and taste).

Now…if you refer back to the main write-up; you will notice that first three were starter type and rest were mains type preparations!
Happy wok’ing!!!

Oriental Connexions Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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