Was over @ the leather bar for drinks the other day : and I prefer going alone ( not to score : but enjoy a good drink for what it is)
This is in comparison to the one in Bangalore (have been there so often I know the bar menu almost by-heart).
1) The seating is right next to the main entrance.This would prob, translate into the least effort for guys trying to get drunk : and for hotel staff in ensuring the "high ones" leave with the least fuss.
2) the doorman is very well behaved and trained in polite conversation while he frisks you away! . Which is a good thing.
3) Thankfully the interiors are dimmed in good contrast to the "laser show in the hall way". I guess the seating is sort of a cross between "private club meets neo executive lounge". which is nice for most part.
4) the dress code is pretty neat. except that Im guessing you need to overhaul the tight tees as most of these guys have (NOW) put on weight: and even black does not cover it well. more mass than muscle!
4) Decent display of their inventory on the rack! (always prefer going out on a weekday . mon-thurs.for bars and pubs. mon-fri for eatouts.
1) The lounge is not "all leather". some of the accompanying pieces of furniture seems to have been hijacked from the restaurant division.
2) the Wine rack display @ their restaurant : is more impressive than the one in the bar. how come? You are telling me suddenly chennaites have started preferring to have a meal and top it up with a subtle drink? cmon.
3) there is a memento of some sort of Rajnikanth @ the fag end of the bar. I asked one of the bar tenders what it signified (definitely some film memorabilia) : and I got a shy smile : Im not sure what it (the smile) signified.
4) They do not have enough bar stools. a 3x3. one at each end of the bar. Either they believe stags should not be encouraged or they can serve people if they are standing. not sure.
5) I dont understand the need to display repeats of the same bottles. For eg: they have atleast three 12 month Chivas sitting like they were Gandhi's monkeys next to each other. You are telling me that an establishment like yours cannot have a better range than that? Same with the Old Monks and the Laproaigs.Why?
5) The Music was not lounge. It is Lounge meets funk with Banana chips masala throw in for good measure. Guys! Please.
check with DJs from around town : and download and burn cds. Please. do your homework. The stuff there is archaic. The DJ there is a glorified waiter who can fit in a nice police constable dress for all he cares.
1) I prefer my whisky ( not scotch ) neat. Asked for a Jameson : the "aptly qualified bartender " says " yes sir : "canadian whiskey". Need not have bothered about that faux pas except that it was his job to know the difference.
2) After that nod: he goes on to pour me a Jim Beam (a bourbon). I told him I wanted a Jameson.(again). took some time for him to comprehend the difference. I told him I could have taken a swig and then told him that I wanted a Jameson :he would have had to NOT BILL the bourbon on me (which was a way of telling the moron I was saving his ass) and he tells me they would bill me for what I drink. Thank you very much sir!
3) The loo ( if You ever have the urge) is not located anywhere nearby. :) You will find you have to walk past the reception desk (where they have aptly posted guys) and ask them. basically the loo is common for the bar and the restaurant ( the same is the case in Bangalore as well with I.T.Alia being their restaurant : but somehow it is "placed" better and easier to locate. I asked the guy @ the reception if that was his "most asked question" and he smiled. Poor chap. i Believe You can actually get a traffic cop there and ask you to walk " the yellow line" there. he can pre-book you for DnD
4) Saving the best piece for the last: There were a trio on the bar stools. A guy and two broads. The other three stools were also filled. I had to take a seat on one of those rounded ottomans. Felt Funny. Tipped the waiter a 100 and asked him (politely) to check if the trio were comfortable moving to the sofas while I park @ the bar ( is insane if I have to sit alone in a booth). Im not taking this personally even though he refused : giving me the "customers have their right" thingie: But I guess he could have helped atleast in checking with them. I ended up waiting for them to leave (which they didnt). I guess college kids out to have a good time in the two hours or so I was there , their pint bottles were still standing while my tab ran an excess of 3 and a half grand. I am presuming if you say this place is expensive ( and I have no qualms about paying for the rt. environs) : then money should be a quotient : and you would have to get them to relocate: or atleast attempt it.
I'm going to try Chipstead the comming week and hopefully they will better it.
my verdict: Better "neat" than never .