Thursday, 24 March 2016

Underdoggs Sports Bar, JP Nagar : Where sports celebrated as a lifestyle!

"Sports has the power to change the world. It has the power to Inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. Sports can awaken hope."
-Nelson Mandela

Few months ago I was discussing casually with my friends about best hangout places around Jayanagar & JP Nagar. Someone came up with the name "Underdoggs" and he told the its a Sports Themed bar and lounge. But when I got an opportunity to visit this place on last weekend I realized that its not a Sports "themed" bar, Sports itself is soul of this place.

Located on the outer ring road of JP Nagar which connects Puttenahalli to Delmia Circle in the same building which houses Kesariya. I don't know why they even have a lift facility to their floor, they should encourage their guests to be more sportive and make them climb all the way till second floor. (Its just my view & Yes! I too used lift)

AMBIANCE: Behind the all metal door on the second floor there is an entirely different world awaits to welcome you. Being a hard core sports lover I fell in love with the ambiance at the first glance itself. First thing you notice in this place is the beautiful work on the wall decals. Whether its illuminated time line, or the collection of headlines of major sports events, or the portrait of legends, or the collection of autographs and jerseys. Everything succeeds in transforming you into a sports enthusiastic.
It has two floors, the lower deck serves as a casual hangout place with some really interesting indoor games like table soccer / fuzz ball, table tennis/ping pong, billiards, etc. Lower deck houses a decent bar counter and a small stage opposite to it for hosting live music & small programs.
While the lower deck serves as best hangout place for singles and group of friends, on the other hand upper deck serves as a fine dine area for family crowd. The upper deck also has a billiard table and a small dart alley. You can find creativity in every bit of this place a cricket helmet hanging over the table emitting dim incandescent light is one of them.
This sports bar could be great place for watching live sports events. It has multiple high resolution screens in every corner of its property. It can screen multiple sports events live at once. I'm really glad that such an iconic place is just in few kilometres away from my place.

EVENT : I was invited as a part of bloggers meetup organized by Underdoggs itself, though I reached late, I was able to participate in some games. As soon as I entered this place and before saying hello to my blogger friends I was dragged into the beer pong game. And in the first attempt itself I made my opponent to down a glass of beer (thanks to my expertise is countryside game Lagori!) Later, along with fellow foodies we explored the place and played some more games. By 8PM lights got dim and music started to gain pace turning the whole environment into cheering mode. Couple of drinks and shots with friends made the evening more memorable.

FOOD: I'm so glad to find that some of their signature dishes are veg. The overall quality of food was really great and presentation was brilliant.

Garlic Lovers Pizza

Pizzas : They have limited collection of pizza, yet each pizza I tasted was too good. First Makhani Pizza came in my way; amount of ingredients in the pizza were fair and they appeared fresh. I felt they could have added more sausage.
Garlic Lover's Pizza: Perfect name to tempt a garlic lover like me, this pizza was none like others I had in recent times. Moderate garlic taste with right amount of spiciness just mesmerized me. Lovely!

Naan Rolls
Stadium Bites: Its a wacky name for their after appetizer collection which had Tandoori Dimsums and Naan Rolls. Both dishes were result of quite an out of the box kitchen experiment. Naan Rolls was their much promoted signature dish and to be frank it was more tastier than they claimed! Spicy Paneer gravy on perfectly roasted naan has tempted me by its presentation itself. And when I tasted it, felt like some angel has blessed upon me. Naan Rolls is a must try dish in here.
Tandoori Dimsum was equally awesome, the vegetables used in its stuff was cooked perfectly and the dimsum itself was well steamed. Overall this dish appeared perfect!

They have some exotic collections of mocktails and cocktails. Every named every drink after a legendary sports personalities. Some how you can relate the taste of those drinks either with the sports or with the personality itself. After trying one drink you just can't avoid yourself by exploring all their collection.

I was welcomed with Robin Van Berry Mocktail, it was more like a fruit punch and was on lighter side. However not bad if you are starting your evening with this drink. The presentation of this drink was really good.
Mary Kom Cooler: True to its name, every sip of this drink felt like a punch to me. Moderately spicy and strong on the appetite. Since I'm a spicy lover, I enjoyed this drink with Tabasco Sauce.
Litchi Kamakazi and Cinnamon Whiskey were two shots which you will surely enjoy if you have a group of friends. Both shots were quite perfect and added a little extra booze to our evening.
Gayle's Rum Runner and Xavi Basil Pina are the two drinks which I was not able try as I was running late, But both drinks looked very attractive. I love to visit this place soon to try those two drinks.
Rum Gulab Jamoon & Ice

DESSERT: If you think desserts comes with risk of catching cold, think again! Their signature dessert Rum Gulab Jamun with ice cream will surely changes your opinion about the dessert. At the first bite I felt like a strong war between ice and fire is happening in my throat. Ah! that wonderful feel, its going to stay in my memory for a long long time. The concept of serving Gulab Jamoon and Ice Cream with Rum is definitely out of the box. 

EVERYTHING ELSE: Parking would not be a problem and they do offer valet parking. Hygiene has been maintained all over the place. The only issue I figured out was with air-conditioning. It was too hot near the bar area.

FINAL VERDICT: In my views Underdoggs helps you to bring out the talents in you which you have forgotten and its a well known fact that sports brings the people together, who knows you might get a best friend for rest of your life while cheering for India with a beer. Its a different world which offers a different kind of experience.

4.0 / 5

Underdoggs Sports Bar & Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Nameesh N Rajamane, Food & Lifestyle Blogger

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Saturday, 19 March 2016

Den of Riders : Indian Paratha Company

Being an adventure rider I know how wonderful it feels when you figure out an incredible restaurant on highway which serves the best food. When you are exploring totally strange territory getting a restaurant or motel with good food is an adventure by itself, but when you get such a restaurant unknowingly it becomes a part of your journey diary!

Indian Paratha Company also popularly known as IPC to many riders community is one among such rare highway restaurants which makes you to forget all those strain and stress of ride. Strategically located on NH 7 the popular stretch which connects Bengaluru to Hyderabad, Bellary and popular weekend destinations like Nandi Hills, Skandagiri, etc. it serves best vegetarian food.

LOCATION: Its very easy to find out this property as it stands alone on the left side of the highway (if you are driving towards Hyderabad / Nandi hills). Its about 9 KMs from the first toll you encounter in this stretch. You can depend on Google Maps as its co-ordinates are accurate up to 200mtrs.

AMBIANCE: I would love to call it as Raw! All you need after a long ride is to stretch your leg and have some fresh air. This place is just built for that! Though it has indoor seating, outdoor seating feels more comfortable and close to nature. There are various seating options available; indoor seats are like typical daba style with wooden table and chairs, on the other hand there is a couch, low-leg seat, wooden crafted table and normal all metal table available on outdoor! The restaurant is built around natural rocks and vegetation in the vicinity which adds more raw flavour to the ambiance.
Though from the outlook it appears "Kadakh Bikers Place" in reality its family friendly place. Children love to play around the property and there is plenty of space for that.
As the evening falls and sun sets between small hills located behind this property, the environment drastically changes with the dim lights and music. Suddenly from nowhere an essence of romance spreads in the air! Its a great experience in deed!

SERVICE: Very very quick! Everything we ordered was on our table within a blink! I think service is key factors in restaurants like this. Because people who drop in here will be generally frustrated by the long ride (or even road rage!). A friendly and smiling service can refresh the mood and when it comes to service at IPC, they have managed to deliver such refreshing experience.

FOOD, DRINKS & DESSERT: They designed a special menu for our 24th meetup of FBAB (Food Bloggers Association, Bangalore) which included their special and popular dishes.

Patiala Lassi : After a 35 KMs ride on a sunny afternoon, this welcome drink appeared more welcoming than any other drink I had in recent times. True to its name "Patiala" the lassi was thick and has been churned well! It was rich in Kesar and Badam but the flavour was well balanced. The sweetness was pretty moderate. I must say, this is one among the few places in Bengaluru where you can get perfect punjabi lassi.

Pakoda Platter : One of my favourite evening snack and having it on highway during sunset while I'm on lone long ride is one of the best moments I experience again and again in my life. Whether its having Mirchi bajji (Podi) on State highway next Malpe Beach, Banana Bajji on Marina Beach, Jackfruit Bajji on Kalpetta Junction of Wayanad or Hot Pakoda on swirling roads of Madikeri. It seems like I have to add one more place to this list. Yes! its definitely IPC. They served Onion and Paneer Pakoda seasoned perfectly with chat Masala. A fine quality ketchup accompanied it! The whole platter was very tasty, crispy and spicy. Having it on a wooden deck with fellow foodies and watching sunset was an unforgettable experience.

Achari Masti Paratha : Star of the evening! I had this kind of Paratha for the very first time and I just surrendered myself for its unique and great taste. I'm not sure whether its exclusive invention of IPC or its a Punjabi origin because though I have travelled across Punjab frequently I never came across with such great dish! This Paratha has been brilliantly made with the stuffing of pickles. They managed to keep the raw taste of pickle which is mixture of light sweet, moderate sour and heavy chilli taste. It tasted so better that I didn't even wanted to ruin its taste by mixing it with Pudina Chutney, ketchup or pickle which they served along with it. Just awesome!

Paneer Tikka Parathzza :  Generally when I hear name Paneer Tikka, spicy side of my taste buds starts to jump, but here my expectation were bit too high. The fusion version of Paratha with Pizza clearly needs some improvement. To start with, it was too bland, if they could spice it up a bit and serve this dish with seasoning option (like chilli flakes and pickle sauce) this dish will definitely follow the legacy of other great dishes they serve here.

Kulfi : A much needed dessert during the summer, the quality and taste of Kulfi was too good. I saw many of my fellow foodies ordering it twice. A light flavour of pan and kesar will definitely gives a meaning full climax for your dinning experience.

Irish Coffe : Another signature drink of IPC, its a feast for both your eyes and tastebuds. It appears like it came out straight from the chemistry lab as the three layers of coffee is distinguishably separated and it was topped with ice. As much art as it appears, you need to be an artist to drink this coffee. Every layer of this coffee tastes far different from each other and while you mix it you feel like a scientist creating a formula for best taste. Yes! if you mix it perfectly it gives a great taste or else it tastes hard sweet! However, I was lucky enough to figure out different blends like caramel, coffee puree in it. Absolutely delightful and challenging drink.

EVERYTHING ELSE: It has plenty of parking space on the service road, hygiene has been maintained well all over the restaurant. Pricing seems quite high but when we consider the factors like serving such high standard quality food in middle of nowhere and relxation feel you get at this place clearly justifies the pricing. However, they offer some combo plans which will definitely saves some money.

FINAL VERDICT : When rays of setting sun becomes an ingredient in Paratha, When relaxation comes in the form of lassi and When Platter includes the joy as a side dish, I don't see any reason for not applying brakes when I see the sign board - Indian Paratha Company!

4.0 / 5

Indian Paratha Company Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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Friday, 11 March 2016

Malgudi Vattika : Where time pauses and even Rewinds

"A man who has no knowledge of his past history, origin and culture is like a Tree without it's Roots"
-R.K. Narayan

Malgudi Vattika seems to be built on this foundation. In this fast paced life of Bengaluru, we humans have become more like a machine valuing future goals, targets and unknown destiny. But very least concerned about our past, history & even our own inheritance tree. We all forget how inspiring is our history and its a best guide to our future. When you visit a place like Malgudi Vattika, you feel like you are looking yourself in the beautiful mirror of Past and from somewhere inside you a string of memory sounds a soft note!

Malgudi Vattika: A brilliantly chosen name for this piece of heaven, Where Malgudi stands for its antique in-house ambiance, Vattika stands for its beautiful outdoor with green garden and landscapes. The name reminds so many things, whether its RK Narayan's fictional illustrations or Shankarnag's popular TV series or the core traditional old Bengaluru. The ambiance here lives up to all those legends. I feel so thankful for Food Bloggers Association of Bangalore (FBAB), for choosing such an iconic place for their 22nd Bloggers Meet.

LOCATION: Its situated on the Mysore Road just 1 KM after Wonder-La gate, typically an hour drive from the central Bengaluru. There are many sign boards placed appropriately for every 200 meters after the Wonder-La in order to guide you accurately. You can also depend on Google Maps as its co-ordinates are accurate.

AMBIANCE: I don't have a perfect word to describe its great ambiance. The overall ambiance catches everyone's eyes. An old bullock cart at the entrance seems like an invitation for a time travel and tempts the guests to take selfies and photographs with it even before stepping into the restaurant. When it comes to the choice of seating you will find it very difficult to choose one place out of those finest seating choices. The front portico which you find at the entrance is perfect for the short breakfast session or for sipping a hot coffee in the evening.

While entering main dining area mind your steps because you will be slipped back to 1950's! Yes, its quite an immense nostalgic feel you can't get rid off as far as you are in this dining hall. Every bits and pieces you find in this hall appears like it is there to tell you a story.

The back portico area opens towards the lawn, it provides a great privacy and a homely feel. This area is decorated with some antiques and the wooden work around is really impressive.

Then comes the epic dine-on-lawn experience. They have specially reserved a table in this area for us bloggers. Though it was a shiny afternoon, the environment was cool. It took us a while for arranging (shuffling!) seats to get shadow, but the whole dining experience in this section was totally awesome.

They have a small party deck which they call as "Halli Katte" (ಹಳ್ಳಿ ಕಟ್ಟೆ) again a perfect synonym. It is specially created for small get-together and celebrations. This space is located on the corner of property and offers perfect privacy.
They have some traditional games which refreshed my childhood memories. Surprisingly, many of my fellow foodies didn't even knew that such a kind of games do exist. Some of the games were as follows:

  • || Snake and Ladder (ಹಾವು ಏಣಿ) ||
  • || Alaguli Mane (ಅಳಗುಳಿ ಮನೆ) ||
  • || Tic Tac Toe (ಒಂಬತ್ತು ಮನೆ ಆಟ) ||
  • || Pagade (ಪಗಡೆ) ||
  • || Lido (ಚೌಕ ಭಾರ) || 
I'm sure that the celebration & gathering will be way too fun with all these games and will definitely keeps guest busy.
The whole property is decorated with lantern like light posts which will add a romantic essence to the evenings. I just loved the whole ambiance.

SERVICE: Very disciplined indeed. Though this restaurant opened just a few months ago, stewards and the managers are well trained. They managed varieties of demands from our members very well. Their North Karnataka style of traditional dress suited that environment very well. People in this restaurant were very soft spoken and courteous.


They serve both South Indian & North Indian cuisine including the breakfast. We were welcomed by Lemon Soda drink, it was absolute delight. After travelling so far on bright afternoon, such a drink was really needed to add up some glucose in our veins.
Then they served Butter Milk. Generally we call it as Masala Butter Milk, but here it was too watery and lacked both salt & spices.

Obbattu & Bajji (ಒಬ್ಬಟ್ಟು / ಕಾಯಿ ಹೋಳಿಗೆ & ಬಜ್ಜಿ) :  It was a surprise to see Holige / obbattu at the beginning, but yes, its a north Karnataka tradition to serve Holige at the beginning. It was coconut holige with jaggery mixture. Looking at the colour of Holige I was expecting to be pampered with sweetness but disappointingly there was very little trace of sweetness. For a moment I felt like they are treating me as a diabetic! Apart from that, Chilly Bajji was awesome. It was crunchy, tasty and moderately spicy.

Paneer Tikka : It appeared to me like jugal-bandi of North and South Indian cuisine when Paneer Tikka arrived on my table. However, Paneer Tikka was above average, the sausage used on it wasn't penetrated the paneer deeply, I can't say it was undercooked, but it was poor application of masala which resulted in bland taste.

North Karnataka Jowar Roti Thali (ಉತ್ತರ ಕನ್ನಡ ಜೋಳದ ರೊಟ್ಟಿ ಊಟ) :  Till date Kamath was my favourite destination for Jowar Roti Meal, but now I have a new place with a great ambiance as added bonus. The Thali had variety of colourful dishes and in my views it was an exhibition on proteins & vitamins. It was true to its origin. Side dishes were too good and the ingredients used in it felt very fresh. Though spice level was quite low in some curry, it tasted good with roti. We also tried Poori with the same side dishes, poori was very good. It was soft and tasty.

Makkhi Da Roti & Sarson Da Saag : Whenever I hear Sarson Da Saag my Punjabi memory flashes. I have tasted Sarson Da Saag in many restaurants in Punjab. It might be due to my high level of expectation, this dish din't convinced me here. I felt lot of improvement needed in terms of spice level and cooking method. Makkhi Da Roti on the other hand was quite good.

Veg Pulao & Veg Handi Biriyani : Both were good and rich in ingredients. Vegetables & Paneer used in it was perfectly cooked and gave a great taste. Veg Pulav was bit sweet with lite pan flavor.
Fresh Fruit Juices: I tried Pineapple & Watermelon Juices, both were good and felt fresh!


EVERYTHING ELSE: It will be better if you let servers to move your cutleries and plates. Because every cutleries they use are antique and forged with two metals, its very heavy. There is lot of parking space in the vicinity. As per my observation, they have maintained a good hygiene all over the property.

I'm still not able to understand how one could drive long distance after having such great meal! Frankly seeing such lush greenery environment and having my tummy full I terribly wanted to sleep for a while on that lawn. (Many families were doing so...) Such an exemplary place it is!

FINAL VERDICT: Its not just about food! Its about whole experience! Visiting this restaurant will add a memorable day in your life!

4.0 / 5

Malgudi Vattika Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Naveen Suresh, Food Blogger
Nameesh N Rajamane, Food & Lifestyle Blogger

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Treasure Chest!

An Antique

Wooden Cutleties

Mirror Mirror! Am I the only foodie who loves food more than my life :P

Ancient Cutlery


Heavy Utensils

North Karnataka Jowar Roti Thali (ಉತ್ತರ ಕನ್ನಡ ಜೋಳದ ರೊಟ್ಟಿ ಊಟ)

Water Melon Juice

Pineapple Juice

Halli Katte (ಹಳ್ಳಿ ಕಟ್ಟೆ)

Cozzy, Private & Green!

Halli Katte" (ಹಳ್ಳಿ ಕಟ್ಟೆ)

|| Alaguli Mane (ಅಳಗುಳಿ ಮನೆ) ||

|| Tic Tac Toe (ಒಂಬತ್ತು ಮನೆ ಆಟ) ||