Sipping a great cocktail at a nice bar is a wonderful experience. But having delicious starters along with the heady mix is even better. Head to these fabulous bars in Chennai for cocktails to suit every taste. The starters are the icing on the cake.
10 Downing Street
Despite a decade and so much competition 10 D is still going strong. Not surprising when you consider the sumptuous starters. Grab one of the couches or the tall chairs and get rolling with the chicken nachos and chilly paneer. The chili cheese toast comes loaded with cheese. It’s both homey and comforting. Whisky connoisseurs can go for the Apple frost which marries the brown spirit to apple juice. But it’s the Black Magic that truly steals your heart. Baileys with a dash of fresh cream never tasted this good. Look out for Ladies' Night on Wednesday and Karaoke Nights on Thursdays.
Where: Kences Inn Boutique Hotel, 50, North Boag Road, T. Nagar. Call: 044 43546565/ +91 9840510203
Word is out and it’s no more a secret that this bar in Chennai is among the best. The cocktail menu comes with plenty of interesting and fresh flavours that you can experiment with. Kami Candy with Vodka, Triple Sec, Blue Curacao served over cotton candy is both delicious and breathtaking. The smoky and spicy Gentlemen VI with bourbon and honey spiced liqueur starts off as being experimentative but soon gets addictive. Wash it down with subtly flavoured Blueberry barbequed chicken wings. The bacon and tomato crostini with lavish toppings of mozzarella could take you to heaven and back. If you are still hungry the pizza could be your savior.
Where: Treebo J's Five Two Hotel, 55, 2nd Main Road, R A Puram, Chennai. Call: +919176790918
The retro-themed interiors, (read microphone-shaped lamps and repurposed ‘hi-fi’ systems), great cocktails and the swinging ‘80s music make Radio Room one of the coolest hangouts in Chennai. The cocktails here utilise spirits and ingredients commonly found in India and the wider Asia region. Don’t be surprised to find star anise, cardamom, tea, bacon, lemon grass, marmalade and elderflower sitting pretty in your glass. The bacon washed bourbon is too stunning to sip while the Bloody Mary spiked with lime and pepper is potent and refreshing. The starters marry the cocktails in perfect matrimonial harmony. Try the spinach and cheese artichoke tarts, spicy spinach chaat and the mushroom and feta puffs to know what we mean.
Where: 94, Sathyadev Avenue, MRC Nagar, Santhome. Call: 085000 05672
The pebbles and stone, subdued mood lighting, wooden flooring and water body at Bay 146 seamlessly blend the rustic with the futuristic. But it’s the starters here that are worth making multiple trips for. The Chicken Chimi Changa (tortillas filled with beans, peppers, olives and served on a bed of lettuce) is the hero dish. The Cottage Cheese Papad (Mexican papad topped with corn bell peppers, jalapeno and cottage cheese) is another noteworthy delicacy. Mushroom & Roasted Garlic Crostinis and Fried Squid Rings are simply addictive. If you spring for a drink the Grape Fruit Como with vodka, grape fruit juice, Cointreau and Campari is lip-smacking. Another vodka based drink - Mystery Taste is wicked with hints of spices. Tea junkies will relish hibiscus infused cocktail with white wine, apple juice, honey and fresh herbs. It comes in an adorable teapot accompanied by two cute teacups.
Where: The Savera Hotel, 146, Radhakrishna Salai, Mylapore, Chennai. Call: +919710976876
Located in the swish Khader Nawaz Khan neighbourhood with a resident DJ constantly upping the tempo, Ink 303 is the perfect hangout for an all girls night out or a raucous game night with the boys drowning drinks while watching games on the large screen. The fare is global with a focus on Continental and Italian cuisines. The Batter Fried Chicken Sausages dusted with sweet and sour spices is an easy way to get into the scheme of things here. The Grilled Mustard Prawns are irresistible. Whisky-based cocktail Boomerang with aniseed vodka, passion fruit and orange juice is a must have. Coffee aficionados should give their coffee cocktails a try. The Ink Special frozen cold coffee spiked with tequila, Kahlua, choco sauce and butterscotch ice-cream is too delicious to be a cocktail.
Where: Oyster Building, Khader Nawaz Khan Road. Call: 044 4216 3303
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