I was recently having this discussion with some fellow eminent bloggers at a food meet. It is a tough ask to rate/ judge a restaurant (that too, a start up) on a single occasion. Why? Haven’t you heard of a risk of being flash in the pan? Have you never had a bad day in office too? Either can happen.
Consistency, like in any other aspect of life, is important in food business too. Bruce lee had once said – Long term consistency trumps short term intensity. Once the food becomes consistent, it etches sweet comfort zones in the memory and that’s what creates the repeat customers for the food outlet.
The Grid has been a very important addition in the foodmap of Kolkata for two basic reasons- the location and the scale. Topsia has only acted as a perimeter for China Town when it has been food around Topsia and the 10000 sq feet area is one of its kind in Kolkata. I remember my discussion with Mr. Gaurav Karnani, the owner, when he explained that he had almost visited 42 micro breweries across the country to understand the functioning of the microbreweries. Tanmoy, an experienced restaurateur as the Head of Operations, Chef Chiranjib with his unending passion for food along with some of the best in business service buys, make the team. And what a team it is!
The Grid Kolkata, is a labyrinth of experience in layers. It’s called The Grid and the basis is the fact that there are 9 different zones/layers within the Grid which makes it so interesting. The 38 feet lego bar forms the centre of hall attraction with large wide screens, where selective matches are planned to be telecast only for exclusive customers with live feed. Sound proof all white Asylum, with old fashioned cane chairs, beer garden which has creepers crawling up, GRID X the private party zone, the largest smoking zone of the city with a DJ console, these all and many make it a place worth repeat visit from time to time.
Categorised as a Pub and a fun place, The Grid Kolkata is more than a just a fun place. This is serious tasty food which is a must try. Usually a pub has only few finger foods and their motto is just drinks. However, in case of The Grid, food is their priority. In The Grid Kolkata, food is considered as important as the drinks and the philosophy behind this is that no one should step out to have dinner after having drinks here. The menu is an impressive one comprising of local and international favourites. It does not begin and end with pizzas, pastas and sandwiches. And even the usual pizzas and pasta have been given some twist and turn to make it interesting.
Some of our favourites are Juhu Gymkhana’s coriander noodles which, as the name suggests has a strong coriander flavour, is green in colour and is very desi in taste, making it a hot favourite amongst many. Kolkata has always had rolls in many avatars, but a naan roll? Well, we had a mutton keema naan roll and the minute we took a bite, both Madhushree and mine eyes closed. Then we both gave each other a meaningful look of ultimate satisfaction. I think that kind of says it all. From small tit bits like masala chips and the Tokyo chickpeas, appetizers like Bhindibazar chicken tikka cooked to perfection, deconstructed keema matar scotch eggs to full meals like berry pulao and grilled fish with lemon, mushroom butter; there are two things that can describe it all- the food is hearty and wholesome. Every dish actually tastes great and I am saying this without any prejudice.
I am personally sold over Smoky Tennessee and just like the last time, this time also I ordered and enjoyed this drink. If you are a whisky lover, then you probably shouldn’t miss this at any cost. The whiff from the cinnamon stick dipped inside the whisky gives it a sweetish and lightly spicy tone, which again is enhanced with the infusion of smoke. We tried out the Chaurasia julep which was soothing and in the end, despite much resistance, I had to try the nail polish shots. Coloured in red, blue and pink, these are vodka shots and if you can ignore the colours, then these can bring a perfect end to your fun filled evening.
We have been to The Grid twice and both times, it was in the evening, which meant the light was not enough to take pictures. Hence, I had to depend on the pictures sent by Tanmoy. The other aspect is that there are some places where you just wanna enjoy and let yourself drown in the good food and conversations and not try to confine time in an hourglass – this is one such place.