No one likes to be proved wrong. I’m no different. The only exception though is when the matter revolves around food, especially if it’s good food.
I’m not a big fan of all the so-called self-brewing bars that have been a rave for the last couple of years (maybe longer) and are still in fashion to an extent. One or the other seems to open every few months. I’m also not a big drinker, prefer conversations over loud music, and since I’m married, the whole pick-up scene is long forgotten. On top of that, since I’m more of a “wine person”, beer never really holds any charm. I like it, and I drink it occasionally, but I give it the same amount of thought I give to drinking non-alcoholic aerated drinks.
I went to Bronx: The Brew Bar (situated in Sector 29, the food hub of Gurgaon) with a lot of trepidation. My father had been there before and he quite enjoyed the food, so we headed there again, this time with the family in tow. Similar restaurants normally do not allow kids in the evenings. I won’t get into the whole debate of whether it’s right or wrong – wrong according to me especially since most of these places allow kids during the day – but Bronx has a “family floor” to tackle this very problem. Okay, so it turned out to be more of an entrance space with a few tables, but still it’s something and I appreciate that, and it was comfortable and spacious seating on top of that.
I wasn’t all that impressed with the interiors of Bronx especially the abundance of stairs going up-down-everywhere, but I believe their terrace seating is the place to be and that will have to be explored at a later date.
The menu is multi-cuisine and how I dread that, any regular reader of the blog will tell you (I imagine you meeting and discussing my blog often); Burgers, Pasta, Pizza, Lebanese, Indian it’s all there and in abundance. There’s a lot of choice but the scale doesn’t tilt either towards the vegetarian or non-vegetarian options staying firmly in the middle. And thus, I expected the worst. And therefore, when the food was served, and consequently eaten, I had not only ate what was on the plate but also my words along with it.
Even a couple of days later I find it hard to find any major fault with the food at Bronx. Take the Bronx Vegetarian Farm House Burger that was refreshingly of a decent size instead of the humongous burgers many places serve now. It came with thin fries – another pet peeve of mine – but they were so crunchy I was like a little kid eating them. The crunch continued with the burger patty which was just amazing so much so that my father had to verbally stop me from eating any more of what was supposed to be the meal my wife had ordered for herself… Oops!
Now, while I quite fancied the crunchiness of the burger, it was the softness of the Vegetarian Pita Pockets filled with julienned greens and reds that came with a variety of dips which had me stretching my hands to the other end of the table. Another hit from the kitchen, its simplicity was overtaken by its taste and that all the ingredients were done right.
I won’t go into much detail about the Margherita pizza that was ordered for the kids and will instead leave you to salivate over the cheesy picture above. It didn’t last long on the table is all I’ll say.
As for the “Indian” food, the quintessential Kebab platter came with Paneer – done two ways and both yummy, Dahi Kebab, and Mushrooms. Once again I was proved wrong when the mushrooms – which most restaurants get oh-so-wrong – turned out to be delicious and the Dahi kebab was so soft -melt in the mouth kind – that having cut it in half, it was impossible to pick it up with a fork and transfer it on to the plate. That’s 2-0 in favour of the chef(s).
Before I move to the main course I must reiterate the fact that a dinner can be made all the more special by how good the service is at a restaurant. At Bronx it surpassed all my expectations; friendly, with a smile, informative, the server even checked how long we would want to wait between starters and mains, and while they might have asked a few too many times how the food was – am I starting to get recognized? HA! I wish – we didn’t mind saying that it tasted wonderful again and again, because it really did.
Coming back to the match – between me and the restaurant – here’s another point they get because of the bartender; while our beers were standard from the bottle, the mocktails were pretty good and I especially liked how they didn’t mess-up the simple, yet complicated “Fresh Lime Water” that my daughter so enjoys.
The mains consisted of Dal Makhni and Kadhai Paneer both of which were delicious and not too spicy. The Kadhai Paneer I expected to be a bit more on the dry side, which it wasn’t, but the gravy was tasty so I’m just going to overlook that aspect. I did throw a slight curveball, my last attempt to strike out the chef, and ordered a Garlic and Cheese Naan. I hoped that it would be either too cheesy or garlicky or neither and dripping with butter, but alas I got nothing; it was thin with favourable amounts of cheese and garlic, cooked to a nice crisp, and just enough butter to add to, not dominate, the taste.
Fine! I give up. I shouldn’t have judged the food at Bronx simply based on my perceived thoughts about such places. To put it in a cliché, I judged the book by its cover and almost didn’t read it. But, here I am admitting my mistake – how many restaurants can do that in the open, HA HA! As for the damage to the pocket – which might have given me half a point to save my face – that too wasn’t extensive and a filling meal for 4 adults, 2 children, with some alcohol and mocktails came to Rs. 4000 with taxes.
Eating at the Bronx: The Brew Bar was a magnificent experience. The service was extraordinary and I can’t fault their food. Yes, I still have reservations when it comes to multi-cuisine restaurants, but Bronx is doing everything right. There’s obviously attention to detail and it’s not just the physical appearances – everything looked good and there was no unwanted drama around the food served – but it was their soft pita bread, the creamy Dahi kebab, the crunchy chips and burger, the tasty naan bread, and those mushrooms; YES! I’ve been proved wrong, but DAMN it feels good.