WORDS SHOURYA JAIN
A place where the vibe is always right and the food, simply delectable!
KARAOKE IN KOREA TOWN!
After a long day at work, who wouldn’t want to just spend a light evening with friends, at a comfortable, relaxed place. Often on my way home, I used to cross this place with stark red exteriors which stood out quite well even in an area over-loaded with pubs and hangout places. And one fine day, owing to my job privileges, I was invited over for drinks and dinner to Cabaret by Peter. Left from work right on time (for once) got stuck in traffic anyway, reached home, put on a basic LBD and left for Cabaret. I was a bit late, and was kind of embarrassed to keep my host waiting. However, after reaching the venue, I realise I was the first one to arrive. This gave me enough room and time to personally interact with Peter. We chatted about how he moved from Korea to India for business purposes, about the whole idea behind Cabaret and of course, Korean skin care.
I sure did feel at home in this new pub which i just entered, and that says a lot about the vibe the place exudes. It’s quite spacious to begin with, and as you enter and you have this huge seating area with tables on one side and humongous digital multi-player dart machines on the other. Enter door number two, another huge hall, with live music, an L-shaped bar counter, and enough space for people to shake a leg. Now the Japanese and the Koreans take karaoke very seriously. And as Ted of How I Met Your Mother once explained, karaoke means an empty orchestra, which indeed is hauntingly beautiful. Peter has dedicated another room entirely for this activity, so you have your fun and don’t kill the vibe of people who generally don’t indulge in it. I honestly felt another room dedicated just to karaoke is a bit unnecessary as it isolates a group of people from the rest of the crowd. And generally in India, karaoke pushes you to let go of your fear in front of complete strangers and not care how bad you sound on that microphone and just have fun. Upstairs they have another very spacious area overlooking the rest of the pub, which is great for your office gatherings or birthday parties.
So once I got done with the tour of the whole place, I came back and took my seat at the head of the table. And Peter just broke out two fancy looking liqueur bottles and called out everyone for shots. Now this was amusing, as I was the first one, he’d pour a shot for me, I do the shot and then I pour it for the person sitting next to me. It was such a fun ice breaker and really got everyone talking to each other. The party was just getting started. We were served the beer of our choice, and thankfully, they had Bira blonde which is my favorite.
We started with Yung Nyum which Peter humbly translated to as the Korean version of Chicken Tikka; and Veg California Rolls which is sushi. Yung Nyum was savoury as anything I’d had in a long time. Veg California rolls looked interesting but what was more interesting was watching people struggle with the chopsticks and failing miserably, dropping food on their clothes and everywhere, it was hilarious!
Main course was a sumptuous spread of Chicken Katsu, Indonesia Nasi Goreng and Kimchi Rice. Chicken Katsu was to die for, and for a person like me, who prefers having vegetarian food, saying this is huge deal. The curry was delectable, chicken was crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. Indonesia Nasi Goreng were like any regular fried rice, which was pleasant, but I had my mouth full with the Chicken Katsu.
After such an elaborate meal I didn’t believe I’d have room for dessert. But some fusion dishes caught my eye and I could not not help myself to Honey Noodles with Ice Cream and Gulab Jamun Tart. The Honey Noodles were air fried noodles topped with vanilla ice cream and was to die for. And I was legit dead after the Gulab Jamun Tart cause it really was that amazing.
We played darts after dinner, some friendly matches and I never realised how late it got because I was busy having a gala time at Cabaret by Peter.