Monday, July 21, 2008

Of Meats and Mugs

The nice things about non-vegetarian menus in Bangalore is the variety of dead animal on offer. Unlike Delhi where the odd prawn dish acquires the status of a delicacy. I was satudying the Mojo menu while waiting for a friend the other day and the thought struck me. For the uninitiated, Mojo is the slightly more snazzy cousin-beerbar of Pecos (which is a historic ruin off Brigade Road today) near the Brigade Road and Residency Road crossing. It attracts mostly yuppy rock type youngsters in Guevara T-shirts, peeping Boxers and goaties and appropriately hot arm-princesses. There is a grey-haired, poytailed gentleman planted there all the time, I think by the owner, so as to be able to lay claim on some anti-establishment type authenticity. On my recent nightout there, a group of old-left or staunch-right looking men in white dhoti kurtas appeared suddenly. Coming back to the menu though, it boasts the Mallu-Mangalorean-influenced beef curry, prawn curry which are accompanied by crisp dosas. The chilly beef and chilly prawn are commendable too. The menu displays various other concoctions based on squid and crab, once you get bored of beef and prawn. I would think no meat-eater will order chicken here, once they have they have gone through this resplendent list of dead animal. The Sunday English breakfast (of Pecos fame)comprising bacon eggs and mashed potatoes is highly overrated, I have concluded after digging it for years. But appams and stew are definitely worth a try for Sunday brunch.

The other dead animal menu that corroborated my thoughts on Bangalore meat-eating cultures is at the Windsor Pub. An excellent brain and onion fry. And a beef fry (which is sort of lie alu bhruji in beef, super) and the fish fry and the keema something.The liver preparation with too much curry patta was a disappointment but can be washed down with beer. Like Mojo, Windsor (potted in a deceptively un-pub building next to some Bank, near Cantonment Station, off Miller's Road)is home to the boxer-peeping, headswingingtotheDoors, ponytailed boys as well as some Kannadiga moustached macho men.

Meat-eating in Bangalore is definitely recommended to indiscriminate meat-eaters.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Koshy's fits all

Koshy's in Bangalore (the non-AC section) is a quaint picture containing groups of check-shirted-moustached men drinking rum, balding man-in-the-corner reading Mallu newspaper over coffee and yuppy-alternative-twenty-somethings engineering sexual chemistry over beer.

What is interesting other than the fact that it serves chai-coffee and alcohol under the same roof is its food menu. You get a a most gratifying prawn-curry-rice and beef-curry-rice here. And an interesting mushroom toast (saute'd mushroom and onion on bread). And the typical alcohol accompaniments like french fries and gobi machurian. With a distinctly Mallu fragrance, it also carries the stamp of the old lackadaisical Bangalore of endless ups of coffee.

It is a rare one-size-fits-all place. You could have breakfast here, and lunch, and tea and finish with rounds of beer. You could go for a date, a work-meeting, an old-friends-catchup, a quiet solitary read. Bang opposite the new Hard Rock Cafe, Koshy's stands at one end of St. Mark's Road in solemn fortitude.