April rain had been on my wishlist for the longest time, after reading a beautiful review of this place by Pune’s own beloved Ms.SRC on Zomato and also after hearing great praises from my brother. I finally made it here for dinner on a Monday and what a lovely experience it was!
April Rain is pretty easy to locate, it is housed in the Centriole Mall, the same building where Starbucks Aundh is located; on the busy ITI Road. It really helps that they have Valet parking because otherwise it gets very difficult to find a parking spot on ITI Road, especially if you go on a weekend. Seems like they attract a lot of crowd on weekends as the waiting area had almost as much seating as the dining area inside…
The restaurant is done up very beautifully and had a certain warm and welcoming vibe to it. Loved the wooden flooring teamed with the light walls, the antique clock on the top-level and the massive chandelier which gives the place a very old world look. The seating is very comfortable and I must say that selection of cutlery is excellent too, both adding to a good dining experience.
Food: The restaurant serves a selection of Indian and continental food, with a contemporary twist by Chef Milind Sovani. Will comment on the taste and flavors further but I will certainly say that everything that we sampled was indeed a treat for visual and olfactory senses for sure.
Multani Murgh Shorba: A delicate, dairy based chicken broth; very light on the palate and had some subtle flavors.
Roasted bell Pepper and smoked Tomato Soup: It was a robustly flavoured, slightly spicy soup with chunky veggies, bits of pasta and cheese. The intense flavor of the roasted peppers is not to be missed. Comes with some neatly grilled garlic bread which helps to cut in the spice between the spoonfuls of soup.
Filo-wrapped Oregano Cheese Sticks with Chilly dip: Hands-down the presentation of this dish wins. The crispyness of the filo pastry with the softness of the molten cheese was a good combination. It is served in shot glasses with the chilly dip at the base of the glass. However, the dip was more of a tomato salsa than having any recognizable flavor or heat from the chilies. It was a very fresh salsa though, so I am not complaining.
Crispy Malwani Kurao Jatra: Another neatly presented dish with crispy deep fried basa at the base and nicely cooked crayfish and shrimp with peppers for a topping. The sea food was very well cooked, although they could have gone wrong in so many places. I only wish that they replace the basa which lacks in flavor, with some fish more local and intensely flavoured; that would make the dish truly Malwani in character.
Lasagne Ratatouille Cheesy Bake: We had the Lasagne for mains and the pasta was quite nice, the veggies had still retained the crunch and the sauce was delicious. It probably just needed a few more minutes in the oven as it was unevenly heated, the top portion quite hot but the lower half was going towards cold.
Service is excellent; very warm and welcoming, polite and excellent with making suggestions.
Price is fairly reasonable for the quality of food and the dining experience that April Rain provides.
I would have loved to rate them higher but for the use of Basa and the temperature issue with the pasta. But I will most certainly go and dine here again.