Beer guzzlers are in froth frenzy as the city opens up breweries across the board. And this new one that opened doors in December takes the brewing experience to craftier heights with its German leanings, IPAs, lagers and customised brews. Eight beers on tap, with March bringing in two more to make it 10, they also have a wall with beer lockers for their regulars, that is quite unique, where regulars get their one litre mugs customised and stored in personalised lockers — with a key for when the urge to guzzle strikes. Since beer drinkers love their mugs... that wall of lockers in wood and brass look quite splendid and inviting!
It’s already doing brisk business at Whitefield, and now Koramangala’s Biergarten opens up for beer lovers, helmed by two brothers Kapil Dua and Nikhil Wahi. A many floored, shrubbery sprouting place that offers the tippler a comfortable and classily done haven to guzzle away at. “Our focus is on craft beers, with community tables, open spaces, greenery, and good beer,” says Nikhil Wahi.
Biergarten first opened in Whitefield over three years ago, and now the new large, many floored and classically designed space in Koramangala is giving beer guzzlers some serious hop and malt manna. “We have focused on beer, and our favourites are the Kolsch, golden ale, dark lager and IPA. The idea is to give people some good beer with a youthful ambience,” says Kapil Dua who is an IHM graduate and has earlier worked with a few five stars.
For beer drinkers, this place comes from these serious hop heads that know their beer even though they admit to not being connoisseurs. Trips to Germany, and entering the famed popular Bier Gartens across Deutschland inspired these two brothers to open their own Biergarten in Bengaluru. That said, its wooded furniture, high chairs, sofas and long community tables, open spaces are welcome, as you get a peek at the skyline and feel the whiff of the breeze. Designed by furniture designer Ravinder Kharab, its comfortable, easy on the eye and unpretentious interiors make it stand apart from the small, packed buildings in Koramangala. We started the meal with their lager, light, citrusy and refreshing. The stout too was caramel flavoured with a depth we liked, and the Hefeweizen’s wheat beer was wholesome.
For starters, we had the crispy lotus stem which was too crispy, with too much batter. We’d love to taste the beautiful crunch of this less-used lotus stem without batter. The bruschetta was brimming with mint and tomato – a bit mismatched. We ordered a sausage platter, which we loved, because it had that famed bratwurst from Germany. With some mustard mayo potato, red cabbage slaw and delicious pork and chicken sausages with a bacon crumble.
We also ordered a gambas prawn which was tangy, lemony with coriander and herb, delicious, buttery. The kubani kebab was unique, with potato filled with apricot and yogurt... with raw mango chutney. Interesting. Kapil and Nikhil’s menu focuses on tweaked Indian dishes, Modern Indian fusion and continental. We heard that the butter chicken with coriander rice and the mutton saag wala with aki roti is quite popular.
We ordered the Caesar Salad after checking if there was romaine in it, and were given an affirmative. We were disappointed as it came loaded with iceberg, no croutons or anchovies sauce, very un-Caesar-like, which executive chef Sam has promised to work on. With Romaine. There really isn’t any other way to have it!
For mains, it was the fish and chips, which came with a nice take on the mushy peas which we liked... and crispy golden fried fish. The pasta, aglio olio fresh red chilli, was lacking its olive oil and garlic punch or chilli freshness, and too much paraphernalia. The crab naans were goof. With a sour cream dip. For dessert, we had cheese cake with baileys and toffee drizzle, delicious and creamy. Our show stopper the Churros reminded us of a Brazilian lady who serves Churros with praline and toffee filling at the Greenwich Market in London. It was among the few churros worth biting into, with a decadent chocolate sauce.
The menu is large, and has interesting combos and pairings, like a chicken tikka quesadilla or a mushroom galouti or vada poppers. Lots of Indian fusion, which as a trend we thought was passe. Salads, pizzas, pastas, curry bowls, Pan Asian, meals on a plate, and lots more, a large menu. We had the wood fire oven pizzas... and opted for the German sausage and bacon... which looked too busy with too thick a crust.
When it comes to the beers, their brew master Lalit Vijay, who comes with 22 years in the brewing industry, and had formerly worked with Little Devils, an Austrian beer, is a perfectionist. He explains, “We use the best of hops, malts, yeast and barley. Our Double IPA is the biggest seller, with Hefeweizen. The smoked drunken weizen is popular, and we also brew something new every month. We did a rye beer with a hint of spiciness recently.” With the pub city turning into micro-brewery city, how does one tell the good from the bad? Lalit adds, “There are very few places that serve good quality beers, it all depends on the quality of instruments, malts and ingredients. We use malts from Germany, hops from America, are very particular about the ingredients.”
Both Nikhil and Kapil have sourced the most quality ingredients, and the ales are refreshing. Kapil’s IHM degree and stints at five stars have stood him in good stead, with Nikhil adding his youthful touch to Biergarten, and it’s a great place to slug a few… the Continental needs a once over. But for a good guzzle, it’s perfect. And you can even get your own beer mug and locker!
(Suruchi Kapur-Gomes takes the road less travelled, in search of the ultimate foodie high in namma city)
Biergarten, 4th B Cross, Koramangala 5th Block, Bangalore
Meal for two: Rs 2,400 for two people with alcohol
Must-haves: Sausage platter, gambas prawn, cheese cake, churros, jaggery mousse and naans
For reservations: 49653208