The perfect pint
7 October 2010
A quick one in Shanghai or midnight samba in Bangalore? Vikas Sharma on his favourite bars of all time
The Underground, Bangalore
This is where devilish thoughts come alive! Great ambience, crowd and fingerfood. Serious drinkers swear by The Underground which stocks a great range of beers. And if you have a drink or two in excess, make a fool of yourself dancing.
The Guzzler, Bangalore
Comfortable seating and a wide range of well-kept ales makes this easy-on-the-pocket destination a must visit for any beer lover. Making the evening special is good old traditional rock music.
Opium Bar, New Delhi
Located at Hotel City Park, this is where the who’s who mingle. Lavish woodwork interiors, finest exotic wines and needless to say, amazing food. Inventive dishes are on the menu and the service is super-friendly.
Polo Lounge, New Delhi
The typical English bar at Hyatt Regency has a lively atmosphere, good wooden panelling and an excellent range of whiskies, cocktails and single malts.
Zenzi Bar, Mumbai
A mixed crowd comes to drink in the atmosphere and unwind after a long day’s work. It’s a classy lounge bar and restaurant where the best of French, Thai, Japanese and Indonesian dishes are available. A cool hangout for models and A-list Bollywood stars.
Olive Bar & Kitchen, Mumbai
Those wanting a drink and imaginative food, head for this topnotch Mumbai address. There are low tables and chairs outside to eat or drink at and a restaurant with sunken bar inside. The menu is classy and the atmosphere, mindblowing.
Someplace Else, Kolkata
The ultimate destination for great live music (and mostly original stuff), home-away-from-home atmosphere and great beer. Someplace Else is made special by the presence of its in-charge Gautam, who understands music and drinks.
Saphire Bar, Berlin
It stocks a large variety of drinks and there's also an imposingly large cocktail menu if whisky isn't your thing. I agree with what one website writes, “But it's those who love the odd dram who will really be in their element. Divided into two elegant lounge areas, the bar is peppered with cosy white leather sofas on which to perch while you sip your drink. Upmarket but not pretentious with it, this is one of Berlin's best.”
Bristol, Cornubia, Temple Street, UK
Believed to date from the eighteenth century, this Grade II listed Georgian building was saved from an uncertain fate several years ago by the Hidden brewery. They specialise in West Country beers; in addition to the regular (and admirable) selection there are two or three guest ales and ciders which change daily.
Edinburgh: the Oxford Bar, Young Street, UK
Made famous as the drinking den of both Inspector Rebus and his creator Ian Rankin, The Ox is one of Edinburgh's best (almost) kept secrets. Don't let the legendary rudeness of the landlords put you off: it's all part of the experience. The pub's particularly fine pint of Deuchar's IPA alone justifies a visit.
Lounge 18, Shanghai
It makes good use of space and the views are stunning. Though the drink list is somewhat limited, there are only gems to select from. Slightly on the expensive side, it’s a must-visit place if you want to meet the city’s young bigwigs.