For years, The Bombay Report has been a non-profit organisation, though not for lack of trying. We did initially experiment with a unique business model where the editorial team focused on great content while our business team picked people’s pockets on trains, but that simply wasn’t sustainable in the long run. That being said, we still sometimes come into money by doing the occasional favour for an old lady, which allows us to sustain our website; the last bastion of free speech & unsubstantiated right-wing conspiracy theories masquerading as an online food blog.
The Irish House is arguably one of Mumbai’s most successful pub franchises, although we can’t for the life of us figure out why. Yes, they have an interesting theme they stick to; whether it’s nice or a nuisance is a matter of personal preference. Because we were saving energy for our greatest project to date(a perilous expedition to Thane), we picked the nearest Irish House, which happened to be right next to our field office in Pali Naka. But more about that later.
The Irish House on Pali Naka is a proportionally accurate demographical representation of Bandra, there were four foreigners, three lesbians, no less than six couples on evidently depressing dates, and a sexually ambiguous writer from Homegrown. Our waiter, who had the coolest name ever, i.e. ‘Baptiste’, tried to lure us into submitting our names and mobile numbers so he could put us on a private, undisclosed globalist database, which we politely, but firmly declined.
As far as décor goes, The Irish House tries, but only just barely. There were a bunch of fake vintage clocks all set to seemingly random time zones, and posters with marginally witty jokes about being drunk, most likely stolen from 9Gag memes from 2010. We did appreciate the choice of music, which was mostly 80s rock, mixed with random Coldplay numbers, just to make sure we wouldn’t have too much of a good time. For a sports bar, the staff seemed to be blissfully unaware that there was a live Champion’s League quarter final on that night, and the TVs were all tuned in to last week’s ISL match instead. We took it upon ourselves to inform them of this unfortunate oversight, but they told us changing the channel at that point would’ve been rude to the two people actually watching it. We decided to place our order, and go watch the match at home instead.
Price: Rs. 600
We called for a Diablo and a Spark, not because we care for White Owl in any way whatsoever but rather because the restaurant had run out of practically every other beer on the menu. We were served some ridiculous, handleless jars with a White Owl logo plastered in the centre, which made them almost impossible to grip. After explaining to the staff that this was absolutely unacceptable, & suggesting places the White Owl marketers should shove those jars (in broken Hindi), we were able to use our pull as the #1 Restaurant Review Blog in India to convince them to give us real mugs instead.
The Irish Lion’s Chicken Strips
We attribute at least part of the Irish House’s success to the shrewdness of its waiters. When asked “What’s good on the menu, my good man?” the staff at most restaurants annoyingly tell us “Everything is good sir”, Which usually leads to us ordering something terrible. The Irish House waiters, on the other hand, suggested items that were so simple that they couldn’t possibly get them wrong; one of which was ‘The Irish Lion’s Chicken Strips’. They were, as all batter-fried chicken is, absolutely scrumptious. They were easily the best part of our meal, just beautifully executed fried chicken strips, decent beer, and football, what more could a man want?
Chicken In Black Pepper Sauce
As the #1 Restaurant Review Blog in India, a fact we’re going to shove down people’s throats until PR executives start inviting us to events; one waiter was nice enough to tell us about a secret item, one not on the menu, but one that he could ask the chef to cook especially for us, should we choose to accept it. We did. It’s called the Chicken In Black Pepper Sauce, and it was, all in all, honesty very disappointing. Half the meal was salad, which we ignored out of principle, and the remainder were just bland pieces of boiled chicken, tossed in a rather average black pepper sauce. Needless to say, we didn’t like it, so you probably won’t either.
People might say that paying anything more than 200 bucks for a vegetarian meal is absurd, and after eating the Herbivore’s Basket we’d be inclined to agree. Yes it was nice, but if you deep-fried a shoe we’d probably find that delicious too. There were onion rings, fried babycorn and capsicum, but the only thing we truly enjoyed were the sweet potato fries. Still it just wasn’t worth the money by any stretch of the imagination.
The Decree: We’ll be honest, The Irish House has its hits and its misses, but what we can’t deny is that we had a fairly enjoyable time, right up to the point where we were presented with our bill. It’s undoubtedly a nice place, and while the food is average, for the kind of money you’ll end up spending you’ll have to be at least in your 30s for it not to significantly impact your personal finances. Would we go there again, sure, but we have a few good years before we enter that tax bracket.