This BKC-based pizzeria in Mumbai–Motodo–takes you on a journey through the streets of Italy.
By Ishika Laul
Pretentious food is passé. Especially in a post-lockdown culture when all we crave for the simpler things in life. For me, Motodo stands at the very top of the list of fuss-free eateries in Mumbai with a simple goal – to bring to you the best of Italian, in the simplest way possible.
Named after the three key ingredients that Italy is known for–Mo for Mozzarella, To for Tomato and Do for Dough–MoToDo is a place that isn’t trying too hard and is doing just about everything right. At first glance, Motodo’s interiors seem cozy and inviting, yet nothing extraordinary. That is, until you walk around the space and notice the subtle nuances inspired by Italy’s traditional pizzerias and design sensibilities.
An open kitchen offering whiffs of freshly baked brick-oven pizzas; frosted, stained and clear glass with a mix of black and rose gold, adding a sense of playfulness to the space with a tinge of nostalgia for the original Italian food scene; and a simple wooden bar with the word ‘Motodo’ subtly hidden in the light paneling, daring you to spot it. Beyond the booths and the tables is the al fresco dining area, complete with a collection of plants and patio-style furniture, immediately making you feel comfortable, and at home.
Instead of a menu where you are left contemplating what to order, Motodo offers a trattoria style menu with a warm combination of street-style, rustic Italian food and aperitivo. It’s simple, classic and with the sole focus of presenting authentic Italian flavors.
Take for instance, the Sous vide watermelon along with goat cheese and a mustard lime dressing. You’d expect it to be like a regular watermelon feta salad. But the flavours surprise you, as the wafer-thin slices of watermelon melt in your mouth, leaving you wanting more.
If you thought the magic of Motodo ends at the Sous vide watermelon, wait till you try the poached and chilled scarlet prawns with avocado cream and citrus herb dressing and the focaccia di recco, which is inspired by the focaccia from Liguria, a crescent shaped region in Italy that is home to a few of the best Italian flavours. There’s nothing like the comfort of flavoursome flat bread after wandering around the streets of Italy, and chef Ritu Dalmia makes sure to bring that feeling home, to Mumbai. A must-try is the basil pesto focaccia de Recco-style.
Before you move on to the hero dish – the pizza –make sure to sample a cocktail (or two!). The ‘Italian Paloma’ and ‘Mamma Mia’ come much recommended. And if you’re a gin-enthusiast, then go for the Rico Di Noci. What’s more, the bartender personally pours you their in-house mix, before carefully garnishing your cocktail with a scrumptious biscotti.
Between the Bianco, Rosso and Verde, none of their wood-fired pizzas disappoint you. At the very end of your meal, while you decide on a dessert, just go ahead and order two. Because, why delay the inevitable! The Venetian Tiramisu is airy, fresh, and definitely a winner. But what really steals your heart is the Bombolino – a beautiful play on the crunch and cream concept, this dessert consists of a crispy pastry filled with a stunning chocolate and hazelnut ganache, placed on runny custard giving you an extremely well-balanced dessert, that is not too sweet and just right.
Motodo is like your friendly neighbour – always warm, inviting and ready to whip you something delicious yet unpretentious. Situated at Jio World Drive, in the heart of BKC, Motodo is ideal for a day out with your family, friends or a date night with your significant other or even, just some ‘me’ time!
Address: Unit 55, Second Floor, Jio World Drive Mall, Maker Maxity Phase II, Drive in Theatre, Bandra Kurla Complex, Mumbai
Timings: Monday to Sunday, 12 noon to 11 pm
Price for two: INR 1,600 for two people (approx.)