What I love about Bengaluru is that there is always something new for us to try out. There are several restaurants with some amazing concepts that are opening doors for discerning diners. Here is the latest round-up of places you can visit in the city.
The Japanese Terrace, XOOX Brewmill, Koramangala, South Bengaluru
This was a plan in the making and XOOX recently opened their Japanese Terrace.
A lovely partially open to the skyspace, with a small Japanese menu. The one thing you will really love, and I personally can never get enough of is the steamed Edamame – the plain and the spicy versions are really nice. The Okinawa Taco Rice is a Tex-Mex meets Japanese dish, three mounds of Japanese rice flavoured with edamame, yuzu sour cream and salsa. The ground beef that crowns the rice is great, especially when you mix it all together. The Hamachi Carpaccio is perhaps the best thing for me on the menu – the slivers of yellowtail come with an onion vinaigrette, black garlic and tobiko and chives, with a few other ingredients as well. Light, flavourful and spot on this. The tartare section has some good choices that you could experiment with.
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Punkah House, Indiranagar, East Bengaluru
Across your experience at Punkah House, you will find underlying inspirations from significant moments in the Indian sub-continent.
Citrus Salad Arugula Chakotra Tender Coconut
Nibble on the Marinated Jolpai Olives with its Assam influence. Bite into the Potato Éclair created from the French technique of éclair making that remained with us.
Galouti Sticky Rice
Taste the earthiness of Malgudi Vegetables that bring together the famous fictional south Indian town with vegetables introduced by the colonists. Try the Chicken and Olive Noisettes with Vadouvan cream, a French derivative from Vaddakkam.
Jamun Ceviche with Seabass
The Jamun Ceviche with Seabass is quite the combination. The Sesame Chicken Strips, Crispy Whitebait, Kashmiri Morels with sticky rice and the Rasam Ramen are sure to get on your must-try list. From the curated cocktails - The Tokyo Tomo with Sake, Pandan Gin and Lime takes it inspiration from Subhash Chandra Bose’s arrival in Tokyo in 1943, where he re-grouped the Indian National Army along with Japanese Allies. The Rangoon Connection with Rambutan and Pisco pays tribute to Indians who migrated Rangoon-Burma, an Indian city in British India to seek their fortunes. Bengal Sour harks back to the partition of Bengal by the British, only to be reunited by a nationalist. Try also from the range of Barrel Aged cocktails - G&Ts, Tea cocktails and Club Classics.
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Ebony, Barton Centre, Central Bengaluru
The 26-year-old restaurant Ebony, located on the 13th Floor of Barton Centre, is finally looking eastwards with a new outpost in Whitefield. Ebony’s menu could be described as a happy mish-mash of cuisines or to borrow an Anglo Indian term, a Kedgeree (Khichdi) of cuisine. The Whitefield menu includes regional specials such as the Parsee Mutton Dhansak, Balti Rogan Josh, Mudaliar Arcot Mutton Chops, Arcot Mutton Biryani and Prawn Pulao among others. Then there is the legendary Saraswat Brahmin style Prawn or Fish Curry — Mrs Palekar’s Saraswat Brahmin Fish Curry. Old school specials also include dishes such as the Nalli Ka Salan, Shahi Khumb Galouti, and Ebony’s famed melt-in-the-mouth Kakori Kebabs created for the restaurant by Arif Ahmed, an ex Dum Pukht chef from the ITC group. Finish with a Nilgiris plantation special Tender Coconut Souffle - a dessert created by a cook on the Nilgiri estate where Rajesh Rajaram grew up and a fine example of the marriage of British culinary techniques and local ingredients to create unique Raj-era recipes. As part of the new Whitefield menu, Ebony will also introduce Colonial Legacy Dishes, a nod to Whitefield’s unique Anglo Indian heritage with dishes such as the Bohri Dabba Gosht and the Madras Club Mulligatawny Soup.
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Fat Owl, JP Nagar, South Bengaluru
An all-new gastropub recently opened its doors in JP Nagar. With its modern rustic ambience, it is poised to become the neighbourhood bar and kitchen serving modern comfort food and cocktails.
The pub serves up modern bar food and you will find a range of Tapas, Gourmet Burgers, Steaks, Homemade Desserts and Daily Specials. The flavours are influenced by Indian and Asian Palate. Among the beverages, you have Fresh Fruit, herb and spice-infused cocktails, Beer on Tap, a wide selection of Malts, and, Mix of Old and New World wines. Entertainment here will be with piped World Music (Channel) as well as Live Performances and Themed Events.
Santé Spa Cuisine, Indiranagar, East Bengaluru
Driven by philosophies of spa cuisine, this Pune brand aims to create healthy & tasty food right here in Indiranagar.
The elaborate menu runs through sections of smoothie bowls, all-day breakfast options, pizzas, salads, homemade soups, small portions, big portions, and desserts and so much more.
Mediterranean Phulka Burrito
But really, it is the addition of cashew cheese to pizzas, buckwheat to desserts, or the pickled mango vinaigrette to the salad that really makes you want to try everything. Venture into the dessert section; it is not very usual to see 'Muesli' or Wasabi in Ice cream. But it is the magic of bringing together unique ingredients with natural sugars like palm jaggery and Khansari, fresh fruits that really puts a cherry on the cake.
Balanced Plate Café, Banashankari, South Bengaluru
Why the name Balanced Plate? Well, when you have a man who knows his good food and his good friend, who is a qualified nutritionist start up a restaurant, what else could it possibly be named?
Balanced Plate serves exactly what it says – meals that are well rounded in terms of nutrition, appropriately portioned for an individual and very high on flavour.
The Hummus with in-house made Pita Bread (there is no refined flour or processed sugar used in any of the dishes at the café), is made extra special with a tempering of sundal.
Among the complete meals, you have the Grilled Chicken Breast with a lemon pepper marinade served with mash and vegetables. A good mix of greens, carrots, mushroom, broccoli and zucchini, unlike the usual baby corn and string beans. The Egg White Steak, made with egg white cubes is another interesting dish. There is a range of interesting drinks – Lemon and ginger, amla, lemonades of different kinds and more. Do not forget to try something from their range of brownies. These do not have sugar in them and are a treat.
Smoke House Deli 2.0, Forum Shantiniketan, East Bengaluru
Smoke House Deli 2.0 in Whitefield has some whimsical visual narratives that are as enduringly delicious as the menu.
Every little detail in the food and unique design story draws inspiration from one basic idea Show The Love. Quirky, hand-drawn illustrations reflect the deli’s dedication to fresh, seasonal, local produce and the wholesomeness of farm to fork. Delicious new additions to the menu showcase innovation from the brand’s kitchen via vegan, gluten-free, and keto-friendly options. From free-range organic eggs on the breakfast menu to signature thin-crust pizzas, handmade pastas, single estate cold brews, fresh fruit salad bowls, and sandwiches, Smoke House Deli 2.0 brings a healthful respite to hunger pangs through the day. A highlight of Smoke House Deli 2.0’s evolution is the all-new ‘Goodness To Go’ section – a station where patrons can step in to grab fresh and quick meals, healthy shakes and smoothies, salads and sandwiches, cold-pressed juices, and more. Another delightful new churn in the menu is the addition of flavourful artisanal ice-creams.
Daddy, Indiranagar, East Bengaluru
Daddy, the latest feather in First Fiddle Restaurants’ cap, is a casual dining cocktail bar located in the heart of Indiranagar, Bengaluru.
Daddy offers a range of New Age Continental flavours that create a wonderful fusion between authentic tastes and South Indian preferences. From Sriracha Tofu Bao to Braised Achari Pork Spare Ribs, Daddy has something for everyone.
For cocktails, Mr Raj Negi, an expert mixologist, has put together a wide range of concoctions, giving Daddy the largest cocktail menu is all of Bengaluru.
Each cocktail has been crafted by the master himself, beautifully reflecting its inspiration.
URU Brewpark, JP Nagar, South Bengaluru
URU Brewpark is a unique multizone experience that spans over an acre and branches out into four areas – a café, a bistro, a park and a brewery. Each space has its own essence while keeping with the overarching earthy vibe. in Bangalore, this is the only space that combines the elements of a brewery with the ambience of a forty thousand square feet landscaped park that will host the city’s first-ever ‘Gin Garden’, and private outdoor barbeque. URU exclusively focuses on wellness and is the first microbrewery to introduce an extensive global health menu with Buddha bowls and elixirs. Brewing in-house artisanal coffees, introducing unique craft beers that are brewed in India for the first time, and fizzy kombuchas truly make URU distinctive.
Ruth Dsouza Prabhu has been a media professional for 18 years now, across multiple platforms. As a passionate F&B writer, she has interacted personally with internationally renowned names such as Marco Pierre White, Janice Wong, Chef Vivek Singh, Chef Vikas Khanna, Madhur Jaffrey, the late Tarla Dalal and many others for her stories. A highlight has been personal interviews with all three of the celebrity judges on Masterchef Australia. She is on several jury panels of food and beverage awards, is sought after for opinions in the field by publications and has her work published in well-known names such as The Hindu, Firstpost, HuffPost India, Condé Nast Traveller, NatGeo Traveller among many others.