BENGALURU: Atrue-blue Bengalurean might feel a sense of nostalgia while stepping into the dimly-lit Standing Bar, JP Nagar. Reason? With a huge bar counter, high chairs, couches, tables on the side, and 80’s music playing in the background, the place will give you the vibe of an era when friends used to catch up for a few drinks at a local bar, with a few pennies in the pocket, and have conversations for hours on end.The menu has everything, from innovative Chaknas to starters, pizza and main course, each of which comes in different portion sizes. Alcohol, too, is served in the desired quantity – 30 ml, 60 ml and 180 ml, which encourages you to drink responsibly and be in your own comfort zone.
We started off with a healthy dose of Kosambri Salad, which is steamed moong dal with pieces of cucumbers and tomatoes served with a dash of lime and coriander garnish. It goes quite well with a beer, and is an excellent tool to keep your discussions going.Also on offer are a couple of cocktails from the bar menu and we recommend OK Guru, Khatarnak, Bhookampa and Why a Screwdriver? Have a Spanner. As intriguing as the name sounds, these drinks have a base of vodka, whiskey and dark rum, curated according to your choice of ingredients like litchi juice, rosemary, honey, peach, coffee and more.
In most places, the bar counter is usually empty if there are seats available. But here, quite a few people choose to sit at the bar and keep their drinks coming, mostly because it is spacious and has the right ambiance to be comfortable here.Priced at a reasonable rate, chaknas are always a delight to have at a bar, something which is not seen much these days. And Wai Wai Bhel and Fried Moong Dal met with all my expectations. The crunchy bhel’s spicy flavours touched all the right senses, whereas the all-time-favourite moong dal mixture tempted me to order more drinks to go with. Everyone agrees that a dash of lemon elevates the taste, and it is exactly what I experienced with the chaknas, promising myself to come back again for these, very soon.
We ordered half portion of starters like Aloo Tuk, Bhindi Kurkure, Mushroom Ghee Roast from the vegetarian menu, out of which, the winners were clearly the last two. Chicken Kabab, Mutton Sukka, and Fish Amritsari, too, are must-try from the non-vegetarian section. However, the street food-style kababs deserve special mention as they remind me of the ones at Shivajinagar, juicy, deep-fried and flavourful.
I ended the night with Fried Rice Desi Syle-Egg, but you can also try out the pizzas here, which come in small and large sizes too.
Cost for two: `1,300 (approx)