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Updated: November 25, 2012 16:17 IST

Is Sunday the new Friday?

LEAH GEORGE
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Chill out with great eats, drinks and company. Photo: K. Murali Kumar
The Hindu
Chill out with great eats, drinks and company. Photo: K. Murali Kumar

The Sunday brunch offers a great alternative to the Friday night out that isn’t much fun in Bangalore any more. Sunday noon means no deadlines, loads of food and joy, finds Leah George

From the ashes of Bangalore’s nightlife, a new avatar of partying rises – the weekend brunch. Suffering under the constraints of curfews and no-dancing regulations, the city has thrown up a more relaxing alternative to the pubbing culture that had gripped it the last few years. And partygoers have taken to it like dying men thirsting for water.

With so many takers, restaurant owners all over Bangalore have expanded their menus to include weekend brunch specials. They have tweaked their offerings to cater to their consumer’s special needs. Lido restaurant at Ista hotel has a host of caricature artists, cartoonists, tattoo artists and magicians at their Sunday brunch to keep their guests and their children well entertained.

The Sunday brunch at Opus bar and restaurant includes live performances from The Jukeboxers. Live requests are taken between one thirty and four, with the tempo picking up closer to evening. According to Opus owner Carlton Braganza, “People are moving toward brunches since there are no restrictions on time. You have about four or five hours to chill, drink and party, without an 11.30 deadline. Plus it is a Sunday afternoon so it’s a fun party time.”

Olive Beach has people queuing up for reservations to enjoy a long, lazy Sunday with breakfast martinis and mojitos, salads and grills, live music and a live seafood station. The quiet, natural space, helping to wash away the strain and stress of the week past is proving to be just the ticket for Bangaloreans.

Sunday brunch at the Latitude at the Vivanta by Taj, Whitefield changes its menu every week according to a different theme ranging from Irish, Italian, Coastal, Burmese, Indonesian, Goan and more. This tactic has created about fifteen different brunches. Latitude also has a kids zone with body painting, a bouncy castle and other games for groups that want a fun family day out, but still want some alone, relaxation time for overworked mums and dads. In a move away from the regular Sunday brunch, Latitude has introduced its Friday special brunch to bring in the weekend for the IT crowd with unlimited beer and a live band. According to Executive Chef Arzooman Irani, “We want people to come in for the Friday brunch, have a fun time and then go home to your family. And hopefully we’ll see you again on Sunday.”

Bangalorean Mark Swaroop says, “Bangalore has varied types of brunches. For example Shiros has Japanese food, ITC Gardenia lets you take a plate and eat from any of the restaurants, and alcohol is the biggest bonus. There’s a whole new menu of food and beverage that comes out in the afternoon, which is great. It’s definitely something to look forward to, to mark the end of one week and the beginning of another.”

Arun George, co-owner of Toit, however, doesn’t think brunches and the Bangalore nightlife have any impact on each other. “Brunches have always been pretty popular, and with the deadline at night it is becoming more so. But I wouldn’t say that it is coming at the cost to the nightlife. Brunches in the city are usually offered on a Sunday afternoon. This won’t stop people from going out on a Friday or Saturday night.”

Though this may be true, there are a few who still remain wary of the changing nature of Bangalore’s nightlife. Tripthi Rodrigues, a 40-year-old children’s clothes designer, says, “I want the old Bangalore back. The discotheques of earlier were a better deal and safer than private parties today. The nightlife in Bangalore for the younger crowd is evolving, but for me it’s still not very exciting.”

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