One of my favourite restaurants in Mumbai is shutting down. A place that I've visited atleast once every week for the past two or three years.
This Sunday will be the last business day for 'Just Kebabs'. The owner, Jaideep, is a good friend now and a die-hard football fan like my buddies and me. We have spent many an evening together discussing the future of European football clubs and analysing the strengths and weaknesses of our favourite players. And to say goodbye to all that so suddenly hurts a little (I'm lying, it's a little more than a little). I've gotten attached to the place, the ambience and I-don't-give-a-shit attitude that the restaurant has. Sometimes you'll hear country music, at other times jazz and on Saturday nights, techno even! You'll hear Jaideep pulling up his staff for being inefficient, overhear chatter from the next table and smell the food fresh out of the tandoor. Simple, not the run of the mill McDonald's factory food, uncommercial and laid-back. It's a place with character.
I don't find places like Just Kebabs too often. I don't think I will. In an age of KFCs, Pizza Huts and the rest of the crap that goes around as 'restaurants', it's these little islands of genuine foodies that struggle to survive. I feel sad. Sad that places like this have to shut down when you have a Domino's popping up at every street corner. And all I can do now is recommend a visit to Just Kebabs (for those of you in Mumbai) before Sunday. (The telephone number is 022-22819555.) I'm going to miss it. Because it was always more than 'Just Kebabs'.