We are a gourmand couple who love to discover new places and eat our hearts out. Follow us for a guilt trip along the food road.
When it comes to anything and everything in achieving something, especially with food and hospitality, we’ve noticed that one metaphor stays universally constant. “You are limited by how you see the world” The larger you see, the larger you dream. And the larger you believe to reach beyond the limitations laid down by non-achievers. ‘Koi, Goa’ was one such example led by two larger than life believers.
We were quite intrigued by the name ‘Koi’ which was just another fish for us till we met Shefali – The one behind this unique concept, who explained us what this common fish symbolised. Koi fish are a common symbol of peace in the age old Chinese Culture and also depicts a strong presence in Feng Shui, depicted on various artworks like clothing, tattoos and even on the colour and texture of food. Little did we know that, until she went ahead to explain in detail why people revere this beautiful fish so deeply. The décor prominently consisted of the Koi and the enlightened Buddha. Many of the attributes Buddha and the Koi Fish symbolizes were seen throughout the restaurant. Starting from the vibes and the decor to the amazing food that they served.
So here is our experience of our coruscating meal in an energetic yet warm environment. Round one were some ‘Desde Sol’ served along with some Vegetarian ‘Tom Yum Soup’ The beer with a Mexican Origin which isn’t served in many places, was too comforting with the distinctly spicy and sour soup. The fragrant spices and generous herbs like ‘Lemon Grass, Kaffir Lime Leaves and Galangal’ dominated the taste quotient.
Up next was a Burmese delicacy bursting with flavours. Also known as the ‘One Pot Meal’ came the ‘Chicken and Vegetarian Khaw Suey’. Noodles, Veggies or Meat cooked in Coconut Milk, and garnished with Peanuts and Fried Onions. Both hit the right chord with its taste. The condiments served with them were elaborate unlike the ones served anywhere else. Consisting of an array of things like Fried Garlic, Roasted Peanut, Spring Onions, Fried Noodles, Chilli Flakes, Basil, Fried Potatoes, Pad Thai Noodles, Green chillies, Fried Spinach, Lemon and Steamed Rice.
The Khaw Suey got us craving for more of these Noodle-soup combination. We were served the light but hot and ‘Spicy Ramen Noodle Soup’ in both Vegetarian and Beef varieties. The light yet highly flavourful broth was way too perfect for our taste. Rather a classy and brothy noodle dish with chunks of Beef or Veggies like Broccoli, Shitake, and Bok Choy that gave it a distinct texture with every bite. This sure awakened our taste buds taking it to the next level.
We were then served the ultra-light and crispy ‘Prawn Tempura’. It had the right crisp crunch on the outside due to the specific use of a special flaky Panko Flour, and a juicy and perfectly cooked prawn. Definitely our favourite dish. One could dig into these light snack with drinks or as entrée during a meal.
Our love for Maki Rolls grew by leaps and bounds with the very first bite of ‘Fried Maki Roll – Veg’ and the ‘Panko Deep Fried Maki Roll’. Of all the five senses, the eyesight is the primary and important one while eating. Like they say; One eats with the eyes first. These two were definitely an eye candy. The crispy deep fried Sushi Roll was cooked to perfection. The crunchy Tempura and Panko crust gave it an added texture. Beautifully plated and served with Soy Dipping Sauce, Pickled Ginger, Wasabi and Pickled Radish.
Our taste buds now satiated to a different level altogether didn’t approve of this next dish the ‘Crispy Peking Duck’. Though the thin crisp exterior made from a special Japanese Flour was great on taste and texture. The duck was lacking flavour.
‘Crispy Spinach’ that followed the Duck was an Instant Hit. This simple and healthy accompaniment is our favourite appetizer before, in between or even after meals. The crackling spinach with sesame seeds and fresh chilli flakes are a must try.
Following the Crispy Spinach was the ‘Beef Rendang’ an Indonesian delicacy where beef is simmered for hours in coconut milk and spices like lemon grass, chilli and some ginger. With such extremes of flavouring, the Beef Rendang actually unfolds the flavours of lemongrass and ginger at first followed by slight shoot in spice with the chillies, finally the taste of the creamy coconut milk hits the back of your tongue. This is an absolute must for Beef lovers.
For mains we were served the ‘Thai Red Curry – Duck’ and the ‘Thai Green Curry – Veg’ along with ‘Sticky Rice’. We were quite full with the variety of amazing entrées till now. But the love for Thai curries made us go ahead. The Thai Red Curry was too perfect to even explain.
The ever so tender Duck with an explosion of flavours from the freshly ground spices was too good to be true. The Thai Green curry had some exotic vegetables tossed in to a creamy and spicy gravy. We’ve had our share of tasting a few of the most amazing Thai Curries. But this went straight ahead to the number one position. This was way too perfect with the bowl of sticky Rice. Definitely our favourites.
Served alongside the Thai Curry and Sticky Rice was the ‘Smoking Dry Chilli Chicken’. This was a unique combination where the smoked chillies really gave it a distinct flavour and spice. But the flavours in the chicken was too less, the covering was a bit too thick and had a chewy and slightly hard texture on its own. Do note that one might even find this dish to be excellent. Tasting so many amazing dishes might have actually spoiled us and taken our level of expectation a bit too high.
Our stomachs full to our hearts content, we thought we were done for the day. But the show wasn’t over. Shefali wanted us to try this one last preparation from the menu. The ‘Thai Steamed Whole Fish’, and boy! Were we happy that we agreed to have this Spectacular and skilfully prepared ‘Whole Red Snapper’. Incorporating flavours inspired by the food from Southeast Asia, this masterful creation was bursting with flavours from the coconut milk, lime juice and zest with hints of distinct flavours from sea salt and black pepper. This took the taste to a whole new level. If you are a Seafood lover, this is a must try.
Research tells us Fourteen out of any Ten individuals don’t say no to desserts. Well.. That’s our research as we love desserts pretty much like everyone else. We weren’t aware that Shefali had one more surprise up her sleeves. She called for the Crepe Suzette Table and worked up a marvelous surprise dessert. The ‘Mandarin Crepe Suzette’ Served with Homemade Tender Coconut, Litchi and Chocolate-Banana Ice creams. This is one dessert which will make us travel to Goa on every possible opportunity. Loved it.
As the quote goes; Somethings never fails to amaze you, and every day there is something new to it that makes you love it even more than the day before. Similarly ‘Koi – Goa’ started off with some amazing things that just won our hearts, and the consistent increase in the level of amazement made us fall in love altogether. Not just the variety of food and its taste, but the plating and presentation to the décor and cutlery used here shows how impeccable their perfection is and how Sky-high their dedication.
That’s the Koi Way to Goa…
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