A New Chapter

Chapter One Bar Maiin

What to look out for –

Rooftop, good food, pleasant ambience

Phone numbers –
080 43004545

Cost –

₹1000 for two

Address

27, Third Floor, Aljosan, New BEL Road, Bangalore.

Alcohol is available

you are here

I do not like starting all my posts with an “it’s been long since I wrote”… so I get straight to the point. If there is a new place in town, I got to be there. And chapter one was pretty new when we first when there. It was accidental and as all unplanned nights are, that one too became one of the happiest times. We entered the lower floor which was indoors area. The upper floor was rooftop. For the first time both the spaces were equally interesting. But, we settled for the rooftop. The place was already buzzing with people. How does the word even get out that there is a new place?

The ambience was lively, pleasant and relaxing. We loved the tiny details that the decorators had put in to make the place look perfect. The planted pots just added to the cool breeze of a Bangalore evening. The staff were friendly and courteous.

For starters we ordered egg pakora, crispy fried chicken and Szechwan lollipop. The crispy fried chicken was just amazing. We loved the quality, quantity and the plating of the dishes served. The lollipops were crisp and spicy. The egg pakoras came in majestically in a momo container. But, they were a little bland for our Indian taste buds. They could have made it a bit spicy. The chicken dum biryani was the best way to end our lovely meal. It was flavorsome and spicy, just like how I loved.

Chapter One is a perfect place for young groups to hangout and have evening conversations. I give this place a 4 out of 5 stars for the ambience, service and food. Surely am going back sometime soon.

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the open box

The open box

What to look out for –

Rooftop, quirky plating, good food

Phone numbers –
080 49653111

Cost –

₹1000 for two

Address

4th Floor, Halcyon Complex, St. Marks Road, MG Road Area, Ashok Nagar, Bangalore.

Alcohol is available

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If there is one best place for lunch with your friends on a dreary afternoon on St. Marks road, then it must be in The Open Box. It had everything that I look forward in a place to eat out – an interesting name, pleasant ambience, rooftop seating and friendly staff. The open box is on one of the busiest streets in Bangalore. Yet, it has retained a relaxed atmosphere that will cool you down instantly as you take your seat.

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The ambience is colorful and interesting. I especially liked their world map on a wall. There are anchors hanging down the ceiling and comfortable tables. The glass windows may not give you a real view of the city because of the crowded neighborhood, but it surely gives you enough sunlight and wind.

We ordered the drinks Duo of melon and ginger. It was a very nice drink with sharp taste of the ginger. Quite a good choice for the summer. For food, we chose wings 65. It was love at first sight because the chicken 65 came in an attractive tea glasses holder. I loved their plating techniques for all the food that followed. What’s more, the 65 was absolutely delicious. Then came the chicken naan sense. It was chicken peri peri served on a bed of chilli naan. I had never tasted a desi version of pizza which looked beautiful, and tasted heavenly.

Main course was chicken biryani 65. Three words – mom liked it. So, it had to be good. I loved how they brought it in a pressure cooker. The tiny snacks that came along were also nice. The biryani was just amazing.

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We skipped dessert in this place, but I’ll soon be going back for some more good food and try out their desserts. I give this place a 4 out of 5 stars. Loved their ambience, service and food.

dots and dashes

Three dots and a dash

What to look out for –

Hawaiian ambience, rooftop seating and mocktails

Phone numbers –
080 33512999
Cost –

₹1000 for two

Address

840/1,100 Feet Road, Metro Pillar 56-57, Indiranagar, Bangalore.

you are here

After seeing so many people visit this place, and also after we were particularly seduced by the strange name, we finely planned for a lunch at the three dots and a dash. The place is on a busy street in Indiranagar. May be that is one reason why it attracts so many people. The entrance is sort of nice, decorated with wooden planks and a long stairway leading to the restaurant. It has a rustic, jungle kind of feeling all over.

As we entered, we were welcomed by a rather stern hostess. One simple advice to all restaurant owners, ask your staff to smile, it costs nothing. We were given quite an uncomfortable table with tall chairs. We were a bunch of short girls who had to jump to sit on the chairs. The ambience was totally crude which was meant to mirror the Hawaiian style, but not quite successfully. The other staff were quite friendly. We ordered drinks – mango toll and black and beauty. I do not always drink mocktails, but I had seen some very nice pictures of drinks in this place. Hoping I would get the same kind of glasses with amazing garnishing I waited. Unfortunately, the glasses were nothing special. They were just like any other drinks from any other place. The taste was normal too.

Then we ordered garlic bread, chicken wings and chilli chicken. The garlic bread was good. It was not too hard or not too cheesy. The chicken wings were both an eye candy and a soul food. Then came the chilli chicken which was ordinary.

I give this place a 3 out of 5 stars. May be it was the over expectation or the average food, I didn’t quite like the place very much. BTW why is it named so?

 

a small lunch

Smally’s resto café

What to look out for –

Lovely ambience, mind blowing burgers and steaks

Phone numbers –
080 49653401

Cost –

₹1000 for two

Address

A1, church street, Bangalore.

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Hello people! It has been more than a month since I last blogged. Well there is a genuine reason. Planning a vacation, packing for the holiday, going on a vacation and coming back to hangover in the thoughts of a wonderful holiday is what I did most of the month. I had eaten so much on my holiday that even writing about food felt too much. Thus the break.

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Well, let me start with the review. Today, I’ll be talking about a small resto café that lies in the heart of the city. Smally’s resto café on church street is aptly named. It is small and the coolest resto café in the most happening place of the city. It is jam packed during weekends and you need reservations. The ambience is typical of all those hip cafes in the town – dim lit, wooden furniture, graffiti and mirrors. It is a cool place to hang out with friends.

We got a small table at a corner (result of eating out in twos) and we sat down to look into the menu. They had some interestingly named drinks and food. We ordered the signature grilled vegetable pizza. The dollar burger and a grilled chicken steak. The pizza was fresh and small. You could manage to eat the entire thing alone if you are really hungry. It tasted great. The dollar burger was small, yummy and juicy. The chicken steak was however the best thing on the table. Just the smell of it is enough to make you hungry. It was fresh, soft and juicy. The spices were of the right amount, but a little bit of more salt and chilli would be welcome.

The drinks were cool too. The virgin mojito was decent. The oreographer was just mind blowing. Ordered it for the strange name and it ended up filling my tummy. Coming to the desserts, they have a wonderful selection of cakes and mousses, you can try any of them and it will certainly be good.

I give this place a 4.5 rating for 5 stars. It is a nice place to grab a burger when you are out at brigade road shopping with your friends.

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must try –

shakes

burgers

steaks

 

poppins time

Poppins the Food Station

What to look out for –

College adda kind of ambience

Phone numbers –

+91 9738934215

Cost –

₹500 for two

Address

38, 5th Main, Byraveshwar Nagar, Nagarbhavi, Bangalore.

Usually I plan my meals when we eat outside. From where we eat to what we will be eating, I have everything planned to the T in my mind. But, there are some times when you eat whimsically. There will be no plan or no thinking. You just see a nice place on the road while you are travelling, and you stop to have a look and end up eating there. It is just like impulsive shopping, but much better.

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One such time was when I found this place called the Poppins. We were passing through that road, I saw these fancy lights and then we stopped to grab a pizza probably. It was a small place, like a 1BHK house. The ambience was fun and colourful. The seats were high and tables were small. The entire do screamed ‘enter only if you’re a teenager’. Well, I am a teenager at heart, so I risked taking a seat.

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The menu too is etched out especially for college goers. There is pizza, sandwich, pancakes and milkshakes. The staff consisted of only two people as it is a small place. A couple of college going gangs were the only crowd. It was a cozy little place that not many people know about.

We ordered a farm house pizza and three ‘c’ sandwich as it was not dinner time and we weren’t in a mood for an early dinner. The pizza was just like how it turns out when you cook it at home. Simple, healthy and tasty. The sandwich was good too. They used a good quality bread which is very important while making a pizza.

I ordered a Kit Kat waffle for the sugar rush. It has all the good things for topping – Kit Kat chunks, chocolate sauce and whipped cream. But the waffle was a bit hard and not very fresh.

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All in all, it is a nice little place to enjoy an evening snack with your friends. I give this place a 3.5 out of 5 stars. A special mention about the music they play. My husband says they are the coolest retro English songs. But then again, what do I know about English songs of yester years? (or of today for that matter)

taaza breakfast

Taaza tindi

What to look out for –

Wonderful morning breakfast

Phone numbers –

080 49510845

Cost –

₹100 for two

Address

115, 100 Feet Ring Road, Banashankari, Bangalore.

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Every time I traveled on the Banashankari 100 feet ring road, I saw a huge crowd of people at one place. The building looked like a typical guest house in the Western Ghats. It was so crowded that I had to pay attention. ‘Taaza tindi’ the board read. My sister always told me how good the breakfast was at the jayanagar branch. So, one Sunday morning I headed towards this place.

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Needless to say, it was packed with all kinds of people – old men in their pajamas, mid aged men in their track suits straight from their jogging, young boys with their cricket bats landing directly from the stadium and aunties with wailing babies. If you called a random number from one to hundred, someone of that age would have certainly raised their hands. We somehow found the parking space, and made our way to the counter.

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The service is very swift because they can’t manage the crowd in any other way. You go pay for your order, get coupons and take it to the serving counter. There are distinguished counters for each food item to make it less confusing. Once you give the coupon, they will give you your breakfast in less than a minute. The menu is limited. You get most of the important south Indian breakfast items. We ordered masala dosa, vada and idli. My jaw dropped when I saw the rates. How can they charge so less? I started to doubt the quality of the food.

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Turns out, I was wrong. The taste of each breakfast item was mind-blowing. In fact, it was better than what most of those old, so called famous hotels serve you. They used ghee for the Dosa. That is when I fell in love with this place. I have special regard to places that use pure ghee and butter instead of oil. These are the people who are concerned about giving quality than to make money.

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Taaza tindi is a clean place even though it is always filled with people. Hats off to the staff for introducing the concept of cleanliness in service, food and place. Most of the breakfast places struggle to keep their kitchen and dining space clean. They should take some lessons from this hotel.

I give this place a 4.5 for food, service, ambience and everything that counts. A must visit if you want to enjoy a good breakfast when you are in a hurry.

must try –

masala dosa

vada

kesaribath

north kannada lunch

Nalapaka

What to look out for –

Authentic north Karnataka food

Phone numbers –

080 23523108

Cost –

₹500 for two

Address

28, 12th Main, Near Navarang Theatre, 1st Block, Rajaji Nagar, Bangalore.

you are here

I am a girl from Malnad. Being born in South Canara (Dakshina Kannada), I have lived most of my life in South Karnataka. I have eaten everything from from akki rotti to ragi mudde. But what I had not eaten was the jolada rotti. Never had I been to North Karnataka nor did I intend to go. I had a preconceived notion that it was an underdeveloped region with people having regressive mindsets. Well it took me to marry a man from there to know I was wrong. North Karnataka may be different in its culture, but it is a beautiful part of our state with some wonderful places you must visit at least once in your life. And food… well let me just say that I have been eating it for three years now and have no complaints.

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North Karnataka food is the healthiest kind of food if cooked rightly. Also, it is delicious. Of course my first love is the typical Malnad cuisine, but I have fallen in love with this unique and healthy cuisine too. Especially because my husband craves for it every other day. I’ll be very frank, the best place you can get North Karnataka food is in North Karnataka. But you cannot travel eight hours every time you have such cravings. So, the second best thing is Nalapaka.

Nalapaka is the place where you can get authentic North Karnataka food in Bangalore. It has been a famous food joint because of its unlimited meals, authentic desserts and the rustic feel. If you want to introduce the Uttara Karnataka food to someone, you just take them to Nalapaka. The food will introduce itself.

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We went there on a weekday noon, so obviously there was a long queue. We had to wait for ten minutes before we got a shared table. This is the most annoying thing about going to busy hotels in pairs. They expect you to sit in front of two other equally uncomfortable people. But we were hungry and couldn’t help. The ambiance is busy, simple and clean. This place runs to permanently packed houses on weekdays and weekends as well. The ground floor is for unlimited meals while you get tiffin and plate meals on the first floor.

As soon as we sat down, fresh plantain leaves were placed in front of us. Then came a dozen powders and pickles. It was a treat to see those different colored gun powders (I mean chutney powders) and pickles all placed neatly at the end of the plantain leaf. These would add flavor and taste to the main course.

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Then came the various palya and dal. First came the brinjal palya (no meal is complete without the brinjal in this part of the state). Next came the kalu palya and the thick dal. Coconut chutney, salad, fried chilli, sambhar, curd and butter milk followed. The plantain looked so complete and colorful that I felt content just by watching it. Just as I thought the serving was over, there came something else. The jowar roti was topped with a large dollop of fresh butter. Hmmm… Happiness!!! We began trying out every permutation and combination possible with the roti, rice and various curries and chutneys. i personally loved their dal.

The food was good, but I have had better north Karnataka food to be frank. All the less, the food was certainly filling, clean and tasty. We ended the meal with a bowl of Godi huggi (a sweet made of wheat and jaggery). There was no Shenga Holige on the day we went to Nalapaka, but if ever you get a chance, don’t miss it.

The food was nice, service was very brisk and courteous. I would give this place a 3.5 out of 5 stars. Visit this place to enjoy authentic uttara kannada food. Just remember to take a huge appetite along with you because the meal is unlimited.

healthy breakfast

Airlines hotel

What to look out for –

greenery, drive in and old world charm

Phone numbers
080 2227 3783

Cost –

₹500 for two

Address

4,Madras Bank Road, Off Lavelle Road, Ashok Nagar, Bangalore.

you are here

Happy New Year! Well I know I am a whole week late. But, is it ever too late to make a fresh start? The New Year comes with new resolutions, mostly unfulfilled ones. One of the most common resolutions is to stay fit. So, just as the New Year begins, we see too many people heading towards the Lalbhag and the Cubbon Park early in the morning for walks. Morning walks at these two places is blissful. While I cants motivate you people to get up every day and go for the walks, I can surely let you know something that will persuade you to go for the walks.

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After the early morning walks comes the relaxed breakfast. The wholesome breakfast will pile up all the calories that you just burnt, but that is another story. There are several breakfast points near Lalbhag and Cubbon Park. But I love the outdoor ambience and hence I fell in love with this place. Though it is a very old place, as old as half a century, I didn’t know about it. I wonder how I missed out such a wonderful place. It was my husband who introduced me to the place and I am very grateful to him.

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The Airlines hotel is an outdoor hotel which is also a drive in place. On a Sunday, you can see the most expensive cars and fancy bikes in the parking zone of the hotel. It is old school and humble, certainly will remind you of the bygone days of the 90’s. The open restaurant zone is filled with minimal furniture, plastic chairs and metal tables. The quaint place sees some of Bangalore’s famous and happening clients ranging from film stars, producers, cricketers and artists. As it is a drive in restaurant, you will have to pay a parking fee.

Nestled in between huge banyan and other trees, this place is what nature lovers will love to dine at. The place offers noon lunch too, but as we were there early in the morning, we ordered Masala Dosa, idli and vada. The Masala Dosa was crisp and buttery. The masala in the center reminded me of the good old days when taste won over ambience. The idlis were soft as a feather. I loved their vadas. They were piping hot, crisp and less oily. The fact that I ate it before even clicking a pic proves how tasty it was. The staff were very friendly with their old world charm. The service was swift and good.

After a wonderful breakfast, we ordered filter coffee because what’s south Indian breakfast without a cuppa? The filter coffee was just marvelous. I ordered bourvita just because it had been ages since I drank it. The bourvita was good, just like the ones you drank during your school days.

The verdict is pretty obvious, I give this place a 4 out of five stars. The place has a good reputation of serving some wonderful dishes for lunch. I bet I’ll go back some day. They have a corner house and a juice center inside their premises. It is convenient for people who eat desserts after their lunch. It was surely a pleasant breakfast that I’ll cherish.

 

Christmas lunch

 

Café Noir

What to look out for –

french ambience, French food and French vibes

Phone numbers
080 22682140

Cost –

₹1500 for two

Address

Food court, Orion mall, Dr. Rajkumar Road, Malleshwaram, Bangalore.

you are here

Alcohol is available

It’s my favorite month! Well not because of the holiday season, not because of New Year or Christmas and not even because everyone is saying the same thing. It’s my favorite month because it’s my birthday month and everyone I love spoil me with gifts. On my birthday, I wanted to take my husband to a very nice and cozy place. I loved café Noir, but my husband never liked the sound of it. So every time we went to Orion mall, he would hurry me away from the huge glass windows of this place not wanting to go inside. But this time it was my birthday and he couldn’t say no. I just hoped that the food will be good because nothing can upset a foodie more than bad food and I didn’t want to upset hubby jaan on my birthday.

The ambience is what attracts you first to the place. It is grey in colour, huge French windows and ungenerous seats. The seating could be a bit more comfortable. But the overall décor just takes you to France. You feel like you are sitting in some French patisserie. The smell of freshly made desserts was welcoming. I had a misconception that the staff at such places will be rude, thanks to my past experiences. But, the staff were very welcoming and friendly.

We ordered a sweet lime fizz and French fries to begin with. The lime juice was tangy and pleasant. The French fries were crisp with right amount of saltiness. Then came the sizzler BBQ chicken. The sizzling hot veggies, chicken and rice were very tasty. My husband just loved it, so I sighed in relief. The le Jardin pizza which came next was hot, cheesy and yummy. Didn’t know a French café could make such nice Italian pizza.

And finally it was dessert time. I love desserts in such places. They have an entire glass showcase lined with their nicest desserts. You can choose any one from them. I took five minutes to choose one dessert because it felt like having them all. That’s when I decided I will eat at least one dessert from this place every time I am at the mall. Finally I opted for crème Brulee. The glazed part was glassy, sweet and brittle and as soon as I cut into it, I found a softest custard inside. The crispy caramel meeting a delicious custard made it the perfect dessert. Surprisingly, even my husband liked it.

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I loved their food, ambience, service and desserts. It was a perfect birthday treat that I could give to my husband who is encouraging about my foodie habits. Will give a 4 out of 5 stars. They have some exclusive desserts for the festive season, so you can give a visit when you are in Orion mall. They have 3 more outlets at UB city, phoenix market mall and VR mall.

 

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must try –

Pizza

Pasta

Waffle

French fires

Sizzlers

Desserts

communiti lunch

Communiti

What to look out for –

buzzing ambience, continental food, great pastries

Phone numbers
080 40999755

Cost –

₹1000 for two

Address

67, Brigade Solitaire, Opposite Hyundai Showroom, Residency Road, Bangalore.

you are here

Alcohol is available

Every time I walked up the residency road, I would be gravitated towards this quirky looking building. The board read community with a never ending m in it. It was a nice place and I always intended to visit it. One Sunday we planned to finally go there. It was a girl’s day out. The red bricked building with huge glass windows has an indoor, outdoor and first floor seating arrangement. There is also a library section where you can read books and have your lunch. I found the décor of the place just wonderful. Wooden tables and chairs, fairy lighting and warm ambience.

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We walked to the first floor because the ground floor was completely packed.  The tables and chairs can be a bit more comfortable. We order the Mexican veg cheese burger, peri peri chicken, US grilled chicken sizzler and pasta Alfredo. The burger was good. Very good. The peri peri chicken was juicy, spicy and delicious. The sizzler was just illegal. It is a dish fit for gods and I felt guilty eating such nice food. Do I even deserve it? Though it is a US sizzler, it had a touch of our own desi spices. May be that’s what made it so tasty. The pasta was cheesy and yummy. May be the chef was in happy mood, so he tossed in more cheese than I expected because most places serve dry and soggy pasta. This was just perfect for my taste. I polished of a bowl all by myself (now these are the perks of lunching with people who don’t like the foods you do… wink wink).

I liked the fact that the manager came to our table and took special care of our demands. It was a perfect lunch. It was time for desserts. The list of their desserts is limited. But, we ordered two different cakes and both were melt in the mouth amazing. Over all, it was a perfect lunch.

If you love to hang out with your pack, have long conversations, some beer and good food, then this is your place. I give this place a 4.5 out of 5 for their hospitality, food and ambience.

 

must try –

peri peri chicken

pasta

pizza

lasagna