Tom Brandt: Thali Too, Oaxaca Kitchen & Thali Tasting Tour - Part 1 of 3

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Thomas Brandt
Last year I interviewed Film Buff  & Foodie Tom Brandt a restauranteur in the New Haven Connecticut area. Life's little obstacles prevented me from being able to take him up on his offer to actually visit the restaurants until this May, but OMG was it worth the wait!!! 

Together with his partner James Beard honoree and Iron chef winner Chef Prasad Chirnomula, they run a total of 5 restaurants  - Thali in New Caanan & Ridgefield, and Thali, Thali Too (Vegetarian) and Oaxaca Kitchen in New Haven. Thali specializes in imaginative dishes based on traditional India fare. Oaxaca's creative cuisine is based on authentic Mexican dishes.
I loved getting a chance to interview Bradley Cooper on the red carpet, that was a high point for Tinsel & Tine, but going on a tasting tour of Tom & Prasad's three New Haven restaurants, was more fun than I can remember having in a very long time. My friend Diane Roka accompanied me and we both agreed the experience was like a fantasy - beautiful, pleasure center hitting dish, after dish coming to the table accompanied by bar specialties. We'd meet the staff, visit the kitchen to tape "food network" segments and then we'd be off to the next tasting adventure.

Tom is hilarious, full of energy and a perfect host.  By the time we arrived at our final tasting, his wonderfully engaging wife Sue joined us, and it all felt like a celebration!

Tom welcoming us to Thali Too - 65 Broadway, New Haven, CT 06511
If I went into detail with everything we sampled, this would become a very long post, so I'll just hit the highlights of Thali Too!  

And then be sure to come back for part 2 & 3, follow up posts featuring our tasting at Oaxaca Kitchen & Thali. 

Truly, if I had access to vegetarian food this good and interesting everyday, I might not miss having meat

Masala Rajkatchori Sumak (Chaat) Crisp Wheat & Semolina Puff, filled with chat and pomegranates.  Hard to describe it's puffy, crunchy goodness stuffed with potato masala.  

Wanna see first hand the puffing up of the chaat! See below video (1:09)

The other specialty here is The Dosa made from lentils and rice flour. Which makes it Gluten Free!  Described as a savory pancake, yet tastes closer to potato chips. You break off pieces and dip it into sauces.

 Click HERE for video of me and Sous Chef Perumal Rajaramar creating this monster size Dosa. Unfortunately, I discovered the camera doesn't add 10 lbs it's more like 20!

Khaman Dhokla V Guajarati Three tiered steamed snack made out of Chick pea flour with Tamarind Mint Chutney, mustard seeds, chili and coconut shavings - It's lightly sweet and cakey!

Thali Too is located right in the heart of Yale's Campus, a little hard to find, but worth looking for!
Diane took a great pic of me interviewing Thali Too Chef Satish Kumar
The below slide show features other pics taken at Thali Too along with a sampling 
of the enticing Thali Too veggie menu:

Images can be viewed larger by hitting the full screen icon on the player
Click HERE to watch with Indian Music accompaniment.

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is about discovering what I find pleasing in screening & eating - in case you missed it, the name is a play on Tinseltown using the Tines of a Fork.

Feel free to send me info on a film or new restaurant you'd like me to highlight.

Will there ever be a cap on movie prices?

Will we one day pay $20 a pop?

Why don't we pay on a scale?

A crap movie like everything Adam Sandler has ever done should cost about $4.50.
Big action movies like"Lord of the Rings", "Iron Man," "Transformers" are worth $10.
Woody Allen movie or something like "Silver Linings Playbook" $6-$7.
A chick flick or light comedy $5.75 and most Indie Films $5.25.

You could even do it by seasons - all summer block busters from May to August - $10
Sept - November 15th $3.50 - $4
Back to $10 for Thanksgiving and Christmas etc...

Or you can do it by A Actors ($9 - $10), B Actors ($6 - $7) TV actors on the big screen ($3.50 - $4)

Surely I'm not the first person to realize this makes sense. Has it been voted on in the Motion Picture Industry and then vetoed? If so, why?

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