Hard Rock Cafe - Phoenix Market City Food Bloggers Meet 2015

There is a general misconception that Hard Rock Cafe is a place where you drink to your heart's content and listen to deafening music. Well I too had the same idea until I started seeing the pictures of the food they offer. When they opened in Chennai at Phoneix Market City, Velachery, I wanted to try the food. Friends and family denied my suggestion of dining at that place "What does a pub have to offer on food?"

When I was invited for a food bloggers meet at Hard Rock Cafe at Phoneix Market City, I happily said YES. Occupying couple of floors, the ground floor is the Rock Shop, the biggest Hard Rock merchandise store in India. The upper level is a 7700 square feet cafe that can accommodate 120 guests and a live entertainment space that features Chennai's unique local music scene. I was early as usual and Sankar joined me shortly. While waiting for the others, we were offered mock-tails. I had a Mango berry cooler and Sankar had Strawberry based mock-tail. Mango berry cooler was a mix of mango, strawberry and pineapple and tasted refreshing. People started arriving and everyone seemed to enjoy their drink.

Mango Berry Cooler

Mint Cooler

Cranberry Mocktail
Shortly Chef Ganesh joined us along with Mr. Niranjan, Manager for South Zone. They were explaining how Hard Rock cafe was started by Issac & Peter in London and what was the motto of the cafe. They explained HRC was always about food and music & not only alcohol. We were handed over the offerings for that day and the chef gave an quick intro on their speciality. We learnt that all the seasoning and sauce are made in house. We started off with Jumbo Combo - a delectable array of HRC's most popular starters. It had Santa Fe Spring Rolls served with chipotle ranch salad, Chicken Wings with blue cheese sauce, Onion Rings with BBQ sauce, Potato skins with Bacon bits along with sour cream and Tupelo Chicken tenders. I loved the onion rings. It was crunchy and crispy and the best I've had so far. The chicken wings were good and the blue cheese sauce/dip was divine. The Tupelo Chicken tenders was well done with a crisp & crumb outside. We were also served Nachos with sour cream, salsa and diced chicken.

Later we were brought The Legendary Burger & Grilled Mediterranean Linguine with options of grilled shrimps/tenderloin along with creamy pasta with grilled chicken/cottage cheese. The Legendary Burger was truly legendary. With juicy & well seasoned beef patty along with bacon & crispy onion rings & cheddar cheese it was simply good. Next to the burger the Linguine stole my heart. Super light pasta with fresh greens & mushrooms in a garlic based sauce with olives & parsley garnished along with the grilled meat, it was super light and delicious. On the other hand the creamy pasta was damn creamy, screaming calories and was very heavy.

Grilled Mediterranean Linguine with grilled shrimps

Grilled Mediterranean Linguine with Grilled Tenderloin

We ended the meal with oh so chocolatey brownies with vanilla ice cream & whipped cream. The Hot Fudge Brownie Sundae was so good that we couldn't stop eating it. Be it the chopped walnuts or the fudge sauce or the chocolate sprinkles every element was contributing to the sundae.

After the dinner, we learned a lot about the functioning of Hard Rock Cafe. Initially I was wondering why an International Cafe has a temple like structure at the reception. It was explained by Mr. Niranjan, that every Hard Rock Cafe has its own resemblance of a monuments that is special to that region. Since Chennai/TamilNadu is famous for temples, this HRC is designed to resemble the temple doors. This is one of the 6M motto of HRC. We were also given a quick tour on the handpicked pieces of memorabilia from Hard Rock's iconic collection.

Since this was an invited dinner, I can't talk about pricing. But taking a look at the menu, I find the pricing, a little bit on the higher side. But given the portion size and the taste, I feel it will be definitely worth when dined in groups. Service was super attentive and the staff are well aware of their offerings and their suggestions on mocktail worked out very well.

Place                : Hard Rock Cafe
Location            : Phoenix Market City. Velachery
Cuisine              : Cafe with International Veg & Non - Veg dishes
Cost                  : A meal for two would come around 1800 approximately

P.S : The write up is based on personal experience only.

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