The Persians who migrated to India back in the 1950s brought the Iranian café culture with them. Unfortunately, today the culture is dying out with fewer than 30 across India. Several Iranian cafés can be found in Mumbai and Delhi, with the maximum number in Mumbai. After their spectacular success in Gurgaon and Mumbai, the delightfully Parsi SodaBottleOpenerWala opened its doors to the residents of Bangalore. Ever since this café was launched in the city, it has been a favourite among the locals – including yours truly.
A black chalkboard containing the daily specials that is typical of Iranian cafés greets you at SodaBottleOpenerWala in Bangalore. ‘Quirky’ best describes the décor of this café with loads of framed posters and metal plant pot-buckets adorning every wall here. The retro booths and the old world glass-topped tables coupled with the ceiling lamps transport you back in time when Iranian cafés were first introduced in the country. The best part of the eclectic ambience is that none of it looks forced – there are fun props like a toy train that runs all over the restaurant as well as glass jars that are filled with colourful candies that seamlessly accentuate the innate quirk quotient of the café.
Foot-tapping Bollywood music keeps you good company while you gorge on the food matched with Parsi themed drinks.
Try the Parsiana which is made with plums, oranges and good ol’ Old Monk. Also worth a mention is the Mumma nu Double Dose – rum, whisky and whisked eggs with a hint of saffron and dates. If you’re a straight up meat-and-potatoes (or meat-and-papeta like 1,20,000 Parsis call it – don’t argue, the menu says so!) type of person, just order the 90ml Bawa Peg – easy on the pocket and supposedly very good for dancing, making friends, and celebrating your bromance.
Authentic Iranian Cuisine
While the creative décor blows your mind, every bite of food your teeth sink into is designed to tantalise your taste buds. I couldn’t help but order some of the Irani café specials – the homemade brun pav with guava jelly and pitch-perfect Akuri are must-haves.
Try the Bohri Keema Pav, minced mutton that is cooked till perfect in a spicy gravy. Pav is served with this dish so that you can polish off all the bits of this delicious delight.
Berry Pulao and Mutton Dhansak are staple dishes in every Parsi home. Served in brass tiffin dabbas at SodaBottleOpenerWala, the lightly spice mutton dhansak is served with salad and fragrant Parsi brown rice. If you are a teetotaller, try their refreshing Raspberry Soda which is made with real fruits and Parsi magic.
What to Look Forward to?
SodaBottleOpenerWala turns to party central on Tuesday nights. Sing your off-key heart out on Karaoke nights and if this isn’t enough, the café has just launched a new offer under their Boozecamp plan for their patrons – enjoy a ‘Buy 1 Get 1 Free’ deal on all the alcoholic drinks on their menu! This offer is available between Mondays to Fridays from 12pm to 8pm.
How to Get There:
SodaBottleOpenerWala – Lavelle Road
Where: 25/4, Opposite Harley Davidson Showroom, Lavelle Road, Bangalore
Contact: +91 7022255299
Timings: Mondays to Thursdays, 12:00 to 00:00, Fridays to Sundays, 11:30 to 00:30
Cost: Rs. 1300/- for two with alcohol (25% Off with Quirk Card – Cannot be clubbed with Boozecamp offer)