Suga Taster, Kimberly Nesbeth’s Ratings for The Meena House, Port of Spain, Trinidad
Date and time of visit: August 16th @ 6pm
No. of diners: 7
NB. Ratings fill 5 stars maximum
Food quality: ★★★★★
Serving amount: ★★★★★
Value for $: ★★★★★
Suga Taster, Kimmy’s Breakdown!
Who can resist visiting an Indian Restaurant while in Trinidad? The Meena House is known to offer Modernistic Indian Cuisine and this encompassed not only the menu, but the atmosphere.
The restaurant is outfitted with modern minimalist furniture married with Victorian-Indo-Saracenic accents.
My party of 7 ordered the Tandoori Nawaazish and the Breadfruit Masala Crepes as appetizers for sharing. Both appetizers totaled ~USD$40.
The Lamb in the Tandoori Nawaazish appetizer was remarkable, which made the Kadhmiri Nalli (Lamb) a must have!
We ordered Butter Chicken, Matar Pneer, Pork Vindalo and Kovalam Chicken too. These dishes were accompanied by Basmati rice, Biryani rice, Garlic naan, Caramelized onion and Goat Cheese naan and Shyamli Shrimp naan.
Main dishes came to about USD $185. Everything was quite tasty. The Biryani rice was a fun item, but it was blown out of the water by the Shyamli Shrimpnaan! SPOILER ALERT! It was blue black because it had squid ink, which not only added the dramatic colour, but also an unexpected, yet pleasant flavour. It was stuffed with shrimp, saffron and cheese. Chef Umesh Meena even stopped by our table to ensure we were pleased with our meal.
My party was full and satisfied, but we had to surrender to the dessert menu!
The Lemon & Rosemary Sorbet, Rose Pannacotta, Gulab Jabum and Baba Aur Rasili and the Chocolate tasting chose us! I won’t ruin the surprise that was dessert, but I will say it was the PERFECT finale to an extremely enjoyable dining experience!
The Meena House, Port of Spain, Trinidad
Location: 3 Alcazar St., St. Clair, Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, W.I.
Two weeks ago, Suga took a walk on the strip of Las Olas Blvd. in Florida in search of a late Breakfast. It was quite a busy atmosphere because of the Festival taking place. People were everywhere!
I wanted to try somewhere new too so the sign, ‘La Bonne Crepe’ caught my eyes. I was like great, Breakfast Crepe.
Missed that though, because upon entry my friend and I were greeted politely then told that they were switching over to lunch so we may have a little wait. It was about 11am and we were fine with that.
Our waitress was not initially pleasant and she was a bit up in age but thankfully she warmed up as time went by.
We ordered Salmon and Turkey crepes with cheese ($15.70USD and $14.64USD respectively). Prices were reasonable and the Crepes on their menu were in different categores such as Breakfadt Crepes, Dessert Crepes, Cheese Crepes, you name it.
They are also a Café so a variety of coffee, hot and cold and other beverages were available.
After much anticipation, HUGE Crepes came our way but we were not impressed. We had no idea it would be crispy Crepes and they were bland. The meats needed more seasoning and a different kind of cheese should have been used to complement them or add some flavour. So it really was just a big pile of nothing that just satisfied my hunger. I enjoyed my frozen Cappuccino though. The experience makes me have to big up our local, Tea Tree Crêperie, although they usually have you waiting on the one person making their Crepes, the quality is good, consistent, tasty and the flavours are brought out well in the Crepes.
So next time I go back on that strip I will just go with what I know, YOLO!
My fiancé and I visited Tea Tree’s fairly new location on Lady Musgrave Rd. for a lunch date last Saturday afternoon at about 4:00pm. The staff greeted us nicely and we chose to sit outside. Though inside was lovely with the AC, outside was cool as well, had comfortable seating and a quiet ambience with light, modern music. We were waiting for a little while and wondered why because we thought the waitress would walk with us and hand us the menu. She came out without the menu and when I told her I thought she was bringing it out she responded that she was going to clean the table first because it gets dusty out there sometimes. That could have been done simultaneously. I certainly do not need to rest the menu on the table to read it. On the other hand, if the table was not prepared, she should have asked us to wait a few minutes for her to ensure it was, seat us and then provide the menu. Perhaps more training is needed?
We were left with the menu for some time to make a decision. The waitress returned and took our orders, but to my disappointment there was no Guacamole for the White Corn chips and no Gluten-free OR Vegan Crêpes available. That should have been mentioned when we were given our menus. Luckily we were people with a flexible diet. So we ordered the Hummus and Pesto Pita Chips instead, the Chicken au Poulet Crêpe (Chicken breast, mushrooms, white wine dill sauce and mozzarella) and Beef Stroganoff Crêpe (mushrooms, onions, creamy stroganoff with beef tenderloin).
The appetizer arrived quickly with the boring waitress and it was alright. The Crêpes arrived in reasonable time afterwards and looked like huge servings. Huge servings they were because I was full when I was finished. Compared to my visit at the previous location, the Crêpes were now more filling and tastier. Service was better then though. The flavour of the creamy stroganoff and mushrooms was especially delightful, complementing the fork-tender beef quite well. As we were chatting and enjoying our Crêpes, we noticed that we were not given a Drink menu. We requested one and they did not have any mint leaves to make their popular Magic Mint lemonade. Really?! What did they have? Someone needs to do a proper inventory and have a chat with some local farmers if the crop isn’t meeting the demand. So I had a plain lemonade that was not as refreshing, but filled the void that water could not.
A different waiter came to us, a quite charming young man unlike the dull waitress before, asking if everything was ok and if we needed anything else. Was he for the night crowd? What a difference! I didn’t get his name but I know our experience would have been much better with him. Anyhow, we asked for the bill, then I decided before I left I would leave ‘Suga Lifestyle’ along with something I liked on the glass window. Space was limited but there was some high up. The waiter gave me the cup of markers, I took one and he brought the ladder. Being just 5ft 4″, I realized with the long stretch that if I wrote in common letters it would not be legible so just decided I was going to write ‘Suga Lifestyle’ in all caps and leave it at that. As I was doing so, I was shouted at across the room to keep it small. Based on the tone used, the fact that I wasn’t a 5 year old and knowing that they would soon run out of space anyway, I quickly finished writing in the one line I planned to and started to step down to hear the same nagging voice closer behind me, apparently one of the ladies in charge, saying just to put a signature etc., also asking what I wrote. I enlightened her that it was just Suga Lifestyle, I do reviews and walked out the door. Sadly I couldn’t leave right away because we needed to pay the bill. The silver lining so I wouldn’t leave completely annoyed? I got my Pop-Up Gourmet Discount and left with a full, satisfied tummy.
Tea Tree Crêperie Sweets & Savouries
Location: 80 Lady Musgrave Rd. Unit #2. Kingston 10, Jamaica
I made it to the Blue Window twice in one week. What a treat. For dinner last Wednesday night, the staff were all pleasant and quite attentive. Turning off the AC in the cold, rainy weather we have been experiencing and all. The food came out in a reasonable amount of time. My beau had the French Onion soup, which was good but not as good as the one at TGIF. We also had the Grilled Atlantic Salmon with coconut cous cous and mixed green salad as well as the Hellshire inspired Steamed Fish Fillet with mashed potatoes and cooked vegetables. The Salmon was cooked just right. Most places tend to overcook it or think that black grill marks suggest it is well cooked. The Lychee Chili sauce to complement it was flavourful. The Steamed Fish Fillet had about 4 or 5 bones. But other than that it was tasty. We were too full for dessert but definitely made up for that at their Sunday Brunch.
The Brunch! Food galore, you name it they had it. What I found interesting is that since I am on my pre-Christmas diet, I thought I would have overdone my ‘cheat day’, as the food at most brunches are usually so heavy. But I was pleasantly surprised. There was also an even split of breakfast and lunch options. From what I can remember, there was the usual, Ackee & Saltfish, Callaloo and Fried dumplings. There was also Escoveitch Salmon, a unique option, but I think salmon is just not the seafood to escoveitch. The essence of the salmon is lost. Potato wedges, the Macaroni and Cheese and the Beef were good. Their Honey Roasted ham was very tasty but could be more on the moist side. Pepper Shrimp that wasn’t so peppery, Crab legs, a Sushi platter and a range of salads were present. The Sushi was delicious and their Greek salad is always appetizing. Food on the heavier side included Barebecue Pigtail, Jerk Chicken and Curried Goat. The 3-in-1 Waffle, Crepe and Roti station was unique as well, with the chef cooking up these delights with a variety of choices of fillings to suit your fancy. The Dessert section topped it off with divine Panna Cottas, Cakes and more to leave you feeling fully satisfied.
Service continued to be fully on point with staff monitoring the dining area and food stations, advising persons of options and what was available. Plates were also cleared around the clock as it should be. It was delightful to see happy, pleasant staff, as that mood somewhat transfers to diners and is an indication that General Manager, Mr. Peter Hilary is doing an excellent job.
Nice atmosphere and good service. Keeping in mind Tea Tree makes everything from scratch, the Nacho Platter took too long to come out, so much so that the Crepes arrived two minutes after. We understood different persons were attending to the order, so there was a lack of communication since the person who made the Crepes probably thought the Nacho Platter was out some time before. They apologised sincerely.
The Nacho Platter was alright. It could have had more crisp and had cheeses with more flavour. The popular Smoked Marlin Crepe was good. Nice flavour, accentuated with the pepper jelly. The Crepe au Poulet with chicken breast, mushrooms, white wine dill sauce and mozzarella was bland though. The preferred option was the Calzone Crepe that had chicken breast, white wine tomato sauce layered with 4 cheeses, black olives etc. but they did not have the white wine tomato sauce.
The majority of Crepes range from $1400JMD to $1600JMD. There is an extremely wide range to choose from, whether you are feeling for something savoury or sweet, so you can choose something new every time. It’s a nice daytime spot to take the kids or have a chat with a friend or two.