Bars across the country’s silicon valley have been brimming with copa glasses of unique botanicals, seasonal fruits, and eclectic mixers. We’re jazzing up booze hour this weekend by heading to Bangalore’s best spots for gin cocktails. By Eshita Srinivas
If you ask James Bond, few things ‘shaken and stirred’ are as invigorating as a classic gin number. Singing with the pine-like notes of juniper berries, cocktails made with the spirit have found a larger real estate in the menus of bars and restaurants across the country of late. Best part? Gin is versatile enough to be paired with a host of ingredients – quirky pickles to classic citrus.
Combine that with Bengaluru’s diverse palate and you’ve got yourself an extensive, unique set of concoctions. And whether you’ve got easy drinking on your itinerary for the weekend or are looking to switch things up from your usual booze routine – bartenders in the city have something for you. We’re sipping our way through the best spots for gin cocktails in Bengaluru.
These spots serve the best gin cocktails in Bangalore
The Record Room
India’s first craft beer and vinyl bar knows a thing or two about gin concoctions. On the menu are inspired creations like Gin Basil Smash with celery-infused gin and basil, Popcorn Gin and Tonic with cold brew, and Blueberry Gibson with bianco. You could also pick from the refreshing lime number South Side or the Straight Forward, which features Jagermeister and orange bitters.
The Pickleback Gin and Tonic – a smooth, sweet, and tangy creation that spotlights mixed pickle brine – comes highly recommended. Best part? They’re all made with natural sweeteners like fig sauce. Pair these with the rajma and goan sausage croquettes, potato mille feuille, pulled tandoori chicken, panna cotta, and a record of your favourite artist.
Address: 16/3, Magrath Rd, opposite Garuda Mall, Ashok Nagar, Bengaluru, Karnataka
Nestled in the bustle of Indiranagar, Hopshaus is, at once, laid back and elegant. On offer are handcrafted brews, which complement the tavern-style food menu featuring indulgent pizzas, comforting fries, and decadent tres leches. The cocktails here, however, steal the show with their refreshing flavour profiles and easy-drinking qualities. Most popular of these are the gin-based concoctions, which includes the light and refreshing, summer-in-a-glass number Eastside. Featuring cucumber and citrus, this is their signature cocktail.
Also on the menu are Stranger and Sons collaborations, Tom Yum, which is an aromatic ode to Thai hot and sour soup and Breakfast Tides, which captures the spirit of an all-day breakfast with ingredients like oats, oats, espresso, milk, strawberries, and butter. We can’t think of a better way to celebrate gin.
Address: 608, 1st Floor, 7th Cross, 12th Main Road, Indiranagar, Bangalore
A popular space for all things malt, Windmills also hosts live jazz events and houses an eclectic collection of reads. And while a microbrewery might not be the first to come to mind when you hear the words ‘gin cocktail,’ the space has an eclectic range of options with the spirit. This includes Babylon with pomegranate and citrus and Brine Damage with cucumber infusion and pickled cucumber.
We’ve got our eyes on the Dutch Courage, which fuses London dry gin and rosemary gin. Also on the ingredients list is aromatic elderflower and tangy lime, making for a refreshing sip. Pair these with their most recommended menu features, including bacon salad, lamb kofta, and stuffed paneer tikka.
Address: 78, Immaine Epip Industrial Area, Whitefield, Bangalore
An elegant destination that’s always got a flurry of activity surrounding it, Raahi’s menu is extensive and unique. Besides bites like crumbed mushroom truffles with cream cheese, paneer tikka, smoked chilli pork with sago crisp, Kochi tiger prawns, and mutton keema fry, their gin cocktails come highly recommended and are some of the best in Bangalore.
In particular, the Voyager’s Gin and Tonic with beetroot extract, beetroot pickle, and green olives makes for an exciting sipping experience. Other gin options here include Bramble with creme de mure and lemon, Breakfast Martini with orange marmalade and lemon, Earl Grey Martini with lemon and vegan foam, and Gin Gin Mule with basil and lemon.
Address: 15, 3rd Floor, Near Nexa Showroom, St. Marks Road, Bangalore
A laid back, fun space that’s underlined by Insta-worthy decor and an eclectic menu featuring comfort staples like butter garlic shrimp crackers, Old Delhi raj kachori, namma chilli chicken, chilli mushrooms, butter lobster, ghee roast and more! The cocktails here, however, have the restaurant’s signature quirky character, complete with unique flavour combinations.
When it comes to gin, this includes Stardust, which features Bombay Sapphire with egg whites and pear, Mystic Mist, which comes with elderflower syrup and balsamic vinegar, and Bombay to Goa, which comes with curry leaves and tender coconut water. There’s also an extensive Gin and Tonic menu to peruse, of which the F.L.A.M.E.S, which comes with pineapple, kaffir lime, and a host of tropical flavours comes highly recommended.
Address: 1, Queens Road, Near Cunningham Road, Bangalore
Gatsby Cocktails And Cuisine
Nothing spells grand like a dining experience in a 28,000 square feet space. Gatsby features multiple levels, private rooms, and cabanas. The menu is as expansive as the space, with sushi, pizzas, burgers, and more. Of these, the Asian fare and desserts like mango sticky rice, tofu cheesecake, and tiramisu come highly recommended. As do the cocktails.
Gin cocktails here include Long Way To Go with butterfly blue pea tea and orange liqueur, Lazulitni with raspberry and blueberry, Salty Gin with grapefruit juice and chilli, and a host of Gin and Tonic flavours – lavender, rose, hibiscus, butterfly blue pea. The Gin Hacker, with features lychee juice, rose water, and martini fearo is served with dehydrated rose petals, making for a delight, both visually and in terms of flavour.
Address: ASR Group, Survey No. 23/1, 1st floor, Bannerghatta Main Rd, Arekere, Bengaluru
The city’s go-to for a good time, this community bar and restaurant is known for its delicious bites and innovative cocktails. On the menu are comfort staples like jalapeno cheese nachos, falafels, mac and cheese, blueberry pancakes, biryani, momos, and more! The boozy beverage menu is just as extensive, with gin options including Thai Maalish with kaffir lime and galangal and A Game of Sling with cherry brandy and pineapple juice. The Morning Sunshine, with coconut water, lemongrass, and fresh coconut cream comes highly recommended and will take you straight to the tropics.
Address: Church St 46/1, Cobalt, Haridevpur, Shanthala Nagar, Ashok Nagar, Bengaluru
This chic bistro, brewpark, and cafe is a go-to for craft malts and decadent bites. On the menu here are options like tiramisu, pizza alle verdure, crispy corn chilli pepper, fried rice chicken and more. Gin cocktails here are some of the best in Bangalore, with classics including Gibson and Bramble. Some of these come with an in-house spin, with ingredient options like elderflower cordial and lavender. Also on the menu are Dew Drops with cucumber and The Poetry with orange marmalade and kaffir lime. Their signatures however are Garden Fresh, which comes with blue pea flower, lavender, and tonic and Garden Fresh, which includes lemongrass, ginger, orange juice, and tonic. These taste as good as they look!
Address: Maratt Estate, Bannerghatta Main Rd, Dollar Layout, Phase 4, J. P. Nagar, Bengaluru
Malts aren’t the only thing this elegant space is known for. The menu boasts of diverse fare like chicken tikka, puliyogare-dusted squid rings, Earl Grey-infused sticky date pudding, masala chai tres leches, and sheer khurma, amongst others. The beverage menu has several experimentative gin creations to savour, including Merry Pin with fresh orange and vegan foam and Pretty Ugly with blue pea and lavender. Traditionalists can pick from classics like Tom Collins, Negroni, Gimlet, and Southside Rickey. For something invigorating, try the 200 MPH, which features fresh cucumber cordial, honey, lemongrass, and edible flowers.
Address: Lake Verandahs, Inanna Taproom, House of Hiranandani, Akshayanagar, Bengaluru
Rounding out this list is a popular brewpub that’s known for its craft brews and delicious grub. On the menu here are delicacies featuring seasonal ingredients like pumpkin, beetroot, and amaranth. The cocktail menu, helmed by renowned bartender Karthik Kumar is innovative and exciting with ingredients like liquid smoke, saffron, rose petals, and more! We’re eyeing the signature Red Rhino Gin and Tonic, which comes with a refreshing blend of blueberries, elderflower, rosemary, and tonic. This spot has some of the best gin cocktails in Bangalore.
Address: 4th Floor Uptown Square, Whitefield – Hoskote Rd, Seegehalli, Whitefield, Bengaluru
Hero and Feature image: Jez Timms/Unsplash
This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia India
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