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Nightlife In Bangalore: The Pub Capital Of India – Pubs & Bars In Bangalore
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‘A person is known by the friends he keeps’ said Samuel Johnson. In Bangalore a person is known by the pubs he frequents. Everyone seems to have a favourite watering hole or two.
The idea of pubs caught on in the late eighties when The Pub started it’s operations near Brigade Road. Those days it mainly attracted college crowds.
Roughly there are three main groups of customers for the pubs; students, the yuppie IT crowds and tourists. Ok, now why do people go to pubs? For some good beer, thumping music and serious de-stressing says Karan, an ITes professional.
Pecos off Brigade Road has been a perennial favourite of students and IT folks for some time. One has to put up with dark and grimy interiors, indifferent waiters and very often watery beer. Food is passable. But the music they play is outstanding. It is always up-to-date rock and hip hop, though other genres also get a fair share. Many weekends and even some week days it is standing room only. Pecos certainly has a charm and personality of it’s own.
Styx on the other hand swears by heavy metal and rock. A DJ is on board most days and they play videos too, mainly MTV hits and heavy metal. But if it is rock, then it must be Hard Rock Cafe on St.Mark's Road Large screens show live and recorded concerts. The atmosphere rocks with great music and ambience.
Being part of an international chain Hard Rock Cafe is comparatively pricey. The food is quite good and is authentic multi-cuisine, not the insipid stuff that passes for multi-cuisine everywhere else. Also the joint stocks an interesting collection of rock bric-a-brac such as Robbie Williams’ rhinestone outfit, Rod Stewart’s stage suit and a gig once worn by Madonna.
Not all the pubs are into rock and hip hop. Take Five in Indira Nagar plays jazz and rock and posters of jazz legends grace the walls. They serve good Belgian beers and a wide range of foods. The mood can be mellow and most often conversations are possible!
Some pubs try the English and Irish ambience and are surprisingly good at it; Geoffrey’s stands out with it’s deep leather chairs and stained glass windows. Retro music and some very good English cuisine complement the setting. Guzzlers Inn is more than a wannabe and plays classic rock and boasts a separate pool parlour.
Dublin at Windsor Manor strives for an Irish effect and succeeds. But at Rs 400 for a mug of beer it is way too expensive for the hoi polloi.
For the girlie gangs prowling for some fun, Zero G with it’s Bollywood numbers is a good bet. The Thirtennth Floor and The Blue Bar are trendy with some beautiful people hanging about. Music at both places is a mix of genres. Even the Sri Ram Sena might find them interesting!
But when it comes to chilling out with colleagues and friends who can forget The Pub World. It was one of the first and still among the best in town. It has five theme seating areas such as American, European etc. and a tempting array of snacks, just perfect for a relaxing evening. Firangi Paani and Taika are also good for soothing the nerves frayed at the office.
At the last count there are about 300 pubs in Bangalore. Some have morphed in to gentler lounge bars. Bangalore is still a fun loving city where the people love a philosophical or a frivolous chat over a drink and forget what they said the moment they step out. Vigilantes or not, long live the mugs, pitchers and tankards.
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