I recently stumbled upon a pretty cool blog called Brown Paper Bag posted by the secret scouters of “cool” in Mumbai and I have to say its quite a goldmine. You’ll get everything from where to find a 55rs cupcake to how to dial-a-bartender to make your party a little more posh. Quite a handy guide to the off-beat track in a city that has so much to offer, plus it’s written in pacey chick-friendly style, I like. Here are my top 10 picks (in random order) from the Brown Paper Bag selection, feel free to become a follower and bag your own updates.
What: Dial-a-bar from Myst, Call 9920010729, Rs 1,500 onwards.
Why: Because all it takes is a call for this floating bar to anchor in your living room. Along with deliciously potent cocktails and shots come matching glasses, mixers and garnishes. Also thrown in: a bartender to lend expertise and an ear, in case your guests need mid-party counseling.
When: You want to set the bar for legendary house parties.
What: Love Lunch dabba service, email firstname.lastname@example.org for menus and rates.
Why: Because Khao Suey will replace khandvi and sabzi will make way for Sushi in your dabba. With Japanese, Burmese, Thai, American, Lebanese and Italian fare on the menu, it’s all about loving your lunch.
When: You want to eat out of the box.
*I actually do subscribe to this dabba along with a few friends and its to-die-for. Every so often I get a message saying “Love lunch makes me happy” and trust me it’ll do the same for you.
What: Kala Ghoda Café, 10 Rope Walk Lane, Fort, call 2633866
Why: A white-washed-sun-splashed space, great coffee, free wireless, arty crowd. Why not?
When: You need a (tiny) oasis of calm in this mad city. Bicycle over on Sundays and earn green-points in the form of a free espresso or macchiato.
What: Vintage sunglasses, Bombay Electric, Colaba, Rs. 3,500
Why: At a store where some dresses cost a cool 25k, these quirky (and seriously cute) in-house sunglasses are a steal.
When: You need shielding from not only the sun, but also the overdone bling of branded shades.
5 bUMP AND GRIND
What: Do-It-Yourself pole dancing kit: portable pole at http://www.annsummers.com, Rs 11,000; feather boa at Premsons, Breach Candy and Cheap Jack, Bandra, Rs 300; pole dancing lessons, Gold’s Gym, Worli, Rs. 3,250.
Why: Because this project provides home improvement on so many levels.
When: A new routine is the order of the day (and night).
What: Size zero fancy cupcakes from Sugar Rush, Altamount Road. To order, call 9833498943, Rs. 240 for a dozen.
Why: The retro cakes are back and this time they’re haute, skinny and for adults. Sugar Rush bakes childhood-meets-chic, chocolate-chip-peanut-butter goodness into bite-size cups, and tops them with pink icing, chocolate frosting, fruit, rainbow sprinkles and pretty much whatever else your heart desires. Sweet!
When: When you want to spread out the guilt.
What: La Cucina Verte Sunday Brunch, Alibaug, January 25 and alternate Sundays thereafter, Rs 1,500. Visit lcv.net.in
Question: Oh all-seeing Oracle, I need to get away, Goa is beckoning, but all I have is a Sunday!
Answer: Go forth with LCV, on a one-day odyssey
You can swim, sing, swill (Champagne and beer, but alas no Henessey)
With brunch, music, a beach – and all so near!
You’ll be rejuvenated in a jiffy, guarantees your trusty seer.
What: Sushi in a box (vegetarian and crab), Candies, Pali Hill next to Learner’s Academy and also near AF Petit School, Rs 130
Why: Budget Sushi. It almost seems like an antithesis, but in this time of recession (heightened by a very expensive month of partying) we must make opposites attract. If the likes of Tetsuma and Spices are no longer on your roe-dar, bring your Bento boxes (and expensive tastes) over to Candies for deliciously cheap Sushi in a box.
When: Your taste buds crave what your wallet can’t deliver.
What: Indigreen organic hand-painted Bollywood Poster T-Shirt, click here to order, or visit www.etsy.com, Rs 1,800.
Why: A fashion designer, environmental activist, and movie poster painter collaborate to bring you clothes and accessories that will cause everyone around you to see green.
When: You need an organic-fix, down to the T.
What: Bottle gardens at Green Grower, opp. Bandra talav, Bandra (W), Rs 250 to Rs 5,000
Why? Horticulturist Anusha Bubber puts plants in open top fish baubles, sleeping ship bottles, funky sealed vases, and pretty much any glass container she can find.
When: You want green thumbs without getting your hands dirty