Right on track

From the Joshi Railway Museum people come two new restaurants based on the theme of, what else, but the Indian railways

Pune foodies with a predeliction for the railways hearken. Joshi's Railway Museum in Kothrud has added another attraction to its miniature rails and this one is sure to bring in more footfalls than ever before. The museum opened a fine dining vegetarian restaurant and a fast food station for visitors this Sunday. In keeping with the Joshi family tradition, the new eateries are completely vegetarian and are caled -- Beans and Pulses (a vegetarian fine dining restaurant) and Rails and Rolls (a fast food station). The most interesting fact is that these restaurants are based on the theme of Indian Railways.

"It was the demand of visitors of the museum that led me to set up the restaurants at the museum premises," said Ravi Joshi, a train modeling expert and owner of Joshi's museum of Miniature Railways. "We synchronised it with our basic theme of railways to make it more exciting and relevant," he added. Rails and Rolls on the ground floor has an ambience similar to that of a railway platform. There is a pantry car instead of a typical kitchen, which looks like a passenger coach and is stationary on the platform. This section serves different types of snacks -- pav bhaji, sandwiches, pastas, Chinese cuisine, soups, ice creams, fruit juices and shakes. The thali available at this outlet starts at a minimal amount of Rs 75. This outlet is open throughout the day.

In the other outlet Beans and Pulses, the museum attempts to create the feel of a dining car in royal trains like Palace of Wheels or Deccan Odyssey. Interior designers Deepak and Gauri Bachal designed this dining car. Here, the feel of sitting inside the carriage can be experienced and one can pick from the exotic spread of the buffet servings on the platform. Apart from the food in buffet option, there is an extensive menu to make selections from. The buffet starts at Rs 150, with Veg Tandoor Platter, Diwani Handi, Tomato Mint Shorba, Saag Makai Chilly Fry, Bhindi Kurkure, Konkani Dal Malhargadh, Seetaphal Rabari and Kharvas being the specialties. The food is served from 11 am to 3 pm and from 7 to 11pm.

Beans and Pulses has also included a unique art display here, which provides a platform to budding artists. While enjoying the ambience and food here, if you like the paintings on the wall, you can go ahead and buy them. Sheela Deshpande, a budding painter and sculptor, has painted these. "More artists will be contributing to this display shortly," stated the owner. With more than 10,000 students from in and around Pune visiting this museum every year, the restaurant plans on adding special food packages for these students. The packages can be carried around while touring the museum, though the menu for these is yet to be decided. The Museum also plans on adding a new feature on the rooftop of the building in the near future.

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