Monkey Bar - 2.75

Monkey Bar

What was to be Delhi's first Gastro pub had me buzzing for weeks. I waited patiently to let the opening fluff and failures to balance out. Perhaps I waited too long. Or perhaps it was never destined to please me. The third possibility is that they accidentally labelled it gastro pub food, when all along they simply meant to call it pub food! Voila I believe that is my answer. ! What exactly is gastro pub food? Well it is the gourmetfication of pub food - pub food in a tux. So it still very much needs to be "fine food". And simply serving a sort fusion pub food does not make it a gastro-pub. Lets face it, the food is not bad but it is a far cry from "fine".

However, the place is ram jammed with mainly students. They have taken over what used to, years back, be Ministry of Sound. The shell is essentially a glass pyramid, that not only floods the restaurant with light through the day but lends a cool industrial vibe to the place.  Just keep in mind it is rather loud in there but well within their rights - it is a pub after all!

I cannot comment on the service much because this review was on invite. Though the staff were very pleasant and attentive. Our server Rajesh was exceptionally good. 


One sip and I understood why there were so many students in there - the drinks were loaded! Cocktails in my opinion are the most abused item on the menu. In a city where food is seldom consistent - imagine the state of affairs at the bar. But unlike food, not as much of a fuss is created with a bad drink - so they easily fall under this cloak of accepted mediocrity. Sad, nothing beats a well made-cocktail. Rarely, and I emphasise rarely, in this city will the same drink, several rounds later, taste exactly the same, and this isn't the effect of the alcohol talking. And what is up with the cloyingly sweet cocktails in this city? Isn't the aim to have us drink more of them, rather than be sugar-scarred after the first?  I am ranting and going a bit off tangent - my rant above isn't all related to Monkey Bar but a general summation of drinks in the city. So the cocktails weren't all that bad here - yes most were too sweet, and too strong - yes there is such a thing, you'll get it once you cross 25. But they are at least trying to do something beyond mojitos, which I appreciate. We tried the Copper Monkey - a blend of whiskey, orange, passion fruit, mint & bitters - not bad but a bit off balance (too sweet, too strong) - whisky orange and bitters is always a winning combination. And the Mangaa - Vodka, aam panna, sweet lime & jeera salt - Quite enjoyable, though again a little sweet. A few other interesting cocktails on the menu to check out too. 

Copper Monkey

Excuse my pictures - I might have said they don't do justice to the food but in this case it really didn't look much better than this.

I would have liked to try the Sorpotel Jam Pot but they didn't have it . 

Yes we ordered a lot. Besides the fact that their menu is massive - I just had bigger hopes for the food. And despite one mediocre dish after another, I still wasn't able to accept it till I tried one more just to be sure. I'm glad I did because at least now I know it wasn't a one off thing.  

I really was quite excited for our first gastro-pub. I hoped to try some innovative, feel good food but instead got something mundane, and fairly average. Nothing was bad or inedible, and the place will do well it seems regardless of what I think. They have managed to provide their customers, value for money. In other words, the quality of the food, does exceed its price point. But it just didn't do it for me to warrant a return all that fast. Though their mammoth brunch/breakfast menu (sat & sun lunch) looks very enticing. The food lacks balance and finesse to be labelled a "gastro-pub". If you are in the area, definitely give it a try, but I wouldn't go out of my way for it either, at least not just for the food. 

* This meal was on invite* 

Alcohol: Yes

Outside Seating: No

Budget: Affordable - Dishes ranged from Rs. 250 - Rs. 500.

011 33036531

Plot 11, Upper Ground Floor, LSC, Pocket C 6 & 7, Vasant Kunj

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