The Bandra Bhai is an exciting new cocktail bar situated deep in the heart of Fitzrovia located below the Pahli Hill restaurant. The unique personality of this bar is undeniable. As you step into this retro Indian smuggles den, filled with spectacular trinkets, gaudy art and velvet upholstery. The story behind Bandra Bhai is fascinating. Until the 1990s India had a closed economy where limited local items were available to buy and imported goods were scarce.
This resulted in a ring of smugglers that imported and dealt illicit goods anything from gold watches to foreign liquor. The whole bar is a designed as front of smugglers den in playful homage to the operations of days gone by.
The delights by no means end at the thematic elements of this experience, the cocktails or ‘contraband’ are most certainly something to behold. Their cocktail list has been created by renowned mixologist Martin Zemanovic.
Each cocktail on the menu comes with a unique twist on well-known classics, for example:
The Date – A deep fruitier twist on the old fashion with a smokier accent not only stylistically but equally to taste
The Blood orange – Those who enjoy mezcal will relish the flavour combinations with this spirit, grapefruit and blood orange
The Pineapple – Rum lovers rejoice, as this refreshing offering accented with pineapple, citrus and cinnamon goes down very well.
The space itself has an intimate elegance which is enhancedby the dim lighting, warm décor as well as the ambient live music performed on Friday and Saturday nights. Bandra Bhai is a great spot to have a nice catch up with friends or something a little more romantic with a fellow smuggler in arms, the quaint personality of this cocktail bar is certainly one to be experienced.
79-81 Mortimer St • London • W1W 7SJ
Written by Dwayne Phillips