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June 20, 2024

The internet-famous Bastian serves great food and ambience in Bengaluru

Why is it so difficult to get a reservation at Bastian? The Mumbai one has garnered a reputation of being notoriously difficult to get into, after Bollywood celebrities were found aplenty on its premises. But that Bombay for you. When it opened in Bengaluru, and retained its reputation of being difficult to get into, that’s when it sealed its reputation and fate.

Serving Americanised Asian fare, Bastian offers a great premise to foreign returns, America-educated desis in the silicon city of Bengaluru. It’s elite have given it their stamp of approval. It certainly helps that Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty is an owner and constant backer, but that’s not taking away the credit where its due – people are queuing up as it offers an unmatchable experience in the restaurant scene.

With Instagrammable interiors, a mellow beige paint interspersed everywhere with Greek-inspired sketches, the décor is a talking point as you enter. The restaurant offers the luxury of space, despite the many guests at the time that we visited, we had seating options that all provided different ambience. For cosy nooks and intimate conversations, the balconies, or the landing upstairs were available, while the bigger tables downstairs are meant for larger groups, conducive to longer conversations and family brunches.

The patio and courtyard outside has a huge bar, a statue of a man in his vacation attire sitting right in the middle – almost as though it were a party avatar of the laughing buddha.

Our drinks were pleasant to sip, but even greater to look at! We wanted to try out our Bombay favourites at the Bastian and went for the prawns and the guacamole. I’m happy to report that it tasted exactly how it had back in Bastian Mumbai and there wasn’t much difference – we later found out that was because all produce and recipes were sourced weekly from Mumbai, except for some of the local fish and vegetables.

We chose the Kale Caesar salad, Animal prawns, and the spicy dan dan noodles with tofu. The menu is divided into very interesting segments, including a Market Section – where one can choose their fresh produce and mix it with a sauce they like. Options include lobster, crab, prawns, snapper to veggies and mock meat/fish. Sauces vary from Sichuan, srilankan curry to Szechuan chilli butter sauce, among others.

Then there’s a proper lunch menu – with salads, cold dishes such as edamame hummus and ceviche, or classics baked brie, thermidor, burgers, tacos and baos. There’s an entire section dedicated to robata. Brunch options include interesting chips and dips variations (chickpea and carrot hummus). Vegans, no need to despair, there are interesting options for you too, such as veggie benedict and thermidor. While we had no space, it was clear that truffle fries were a big hit all around. We refrained, however, as we were waiting for the showstopper, the pull-me-up chocolate cake that had gone viral online. Layers of crisp wafer hid the most indulgent chocolate ice cream, chocolate sauce, cream and cake layers. It was indeed a pleasant end to a very heavy yet sensational meal.

Payel Majumdar Upreti

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