Fiat Caffe has been reinvented as Fiat Caffé-Car-O-Bar, which should tickle our Indian sensibilities. For all those who assume that Fiat Caffe is a cool looking car showroom – it is. But it also has another level which functions as a bar and café and the ground floor transforms into a space for performances and live gigs after dark. And if you want to dance the night away – they have a cool DJ console fashioned in the hood of a dismembered fiat! How’s that for sticking to the automobile theme?
Located right next to EGL, it offers office goers the chance to grab a quick drink and socialize in a fun set up. The first floor space is small cozy and lets you witness the the happenings of the showroom below (if you’re into that kind of thing!). The décor is decidedly all things car and car parts. A number plate bar, seats made out of the rear half of a Fiat Padmini, a vertical backdrop made of the cross-section of a Punto Evo, wall décor in the form of steering wheels, wash basins made of car tyres… you get the drift.
While the food menu is limited to short eats and a few ‘from everywhere’ mains, the bar menu is probably what you should pay special attention to. We were invited for a special sampling of the new menu last Friday and came away impressed with the drinks. The Bramble (Gin, homemade wild berry liquor and sour mix) made for a nice start to the evening. If sweet drinks are your thing – this one will keep you happy. The Spiked Iced Tea stays true to its name and has your innocent Iced Tea ‘adult’ered with five white spirits.
The Orange and Cilantro Martini was just what the doctor ordered. With cilantro and chilli providing the required kick, this martini will leave you pleasantly surprised. The Passion Fruit and Anise Martini was another winner, with the licorice flavour being balanced with the inherent sweetness of passion fruit. The favorite of the evening (for our table at least) was the Orange Infused Vodka and Mint Julep. The decidedly sweet drink had a candy-caramel aftertaste and every sip was delightful!
The appetizers for vegetarians were commonplace. The Green Twist with mint mayo turned out to be a version of a Hara Bara Kebab served with mayo spiked with green chutney. The Dragon Roll with Schezwan sauce was a regular vegetable spring roll. Was it tasty? Yes. Will people go into raptures about it? No.
The Non-vegetarian appetizers scored much better. The Thai Thai Fish justified it’s double Thai nomenclature and provided a burst of hot and tangy flavors to the ubiquitous basa. Tossed with onions it makes a good accompaniment to cold beer. We were thrilled to find Smoked Pork Sausages served with a nice Honey Mustard Potato Salad. As long as they stick to exactly what they served us that day – I don’t think you’ll find anyone complaining, not even the Germans.
The piece de la resistance was the Caramelized Pork Ribs. Slow cooked, fall off the bone, melt in the mouth goodness. I must give them credit for this one – because I have seen many seasoned restaurants get this completely wrong – the ribs are either too dry or served walking raw. The sauce on this one was also finger licking good and it kind of put me in a more benign mood for the evening.
The mood resulted in a couple of rounds of drinks and finally splitting a very generous Lamb Burger with Mr.FPD. And because it was a Friday… we ended with shots. Evil-shaketheworkweekoff-shots.
Fiat Caffe-Car-O-Bar works very well as an after work hangout, given its location. If your primary focus is to catch up with a few friends over a couple of drinks and accompanying starters – it does a decent job of satisfying the purpose. Because of its recent appearance on the scene – the crowds are probably thin to negligible. However, with the spate of promotions and Happy Hour gigs they have planned in the near future, the office folks will be rushing in.
92/93, Amar Jyothi Layout, Domlur
Koramangala Intermediate Ring Road,
Ph: +91 80 6568 4444
Parking: Valet Available || Cost: Rs. 1800/++ for a meal for two with drinks