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    Look out for a clever menu with innovative Far Eastern flavours at this brand new gastro pub

    ike all Manu Chandra offerings, the initial buzz around his new venture, a gastro pub whimsically named Fatty Bao, was muted. It opened quietly, without much fanfare but word began trickling in quickly. About the food, cocktails and presentation. So naturally, we decided to check it out.

    food8lead7Set atop the popular Monkey Bar, this cosy, trendy spot has all the quirk factor we loved in Chandra’s last venture – Likethatonly.
    Panda murals with comical faces, crustaceans peeking invitingly out of light fixtures, mismatched chairs, and warm aquamarine and orange  tones lend the space a happy, yet streamlined, chic vibe that is very inviting, almost luring.

    And since there is always room for one more Asian dining spot in the city, this one came with the promise of a novel menu and plenty of choices.

    Starting off
    The cocktails at Fatty Bao are very good. Perfectly mixed, with not too much fuss or garnish. But do caution the bartenders not to overdo the ice.

    We tried a  Fatty Sour (whisky with fresh raspberries, lime and sugar) and a Micky Ninja (vodka with fresh orange slices, cucumber juice and a dash of Jameson whisky). Both of which were spot on.

    Along with the drinks, we sampled the appetisers. There are plenty of small plates to nibble on — cream cheese and asparagus sushi roll with a crisp tempura crunch, braised beef cheeks bao (which a friend raved about and which came with succulent meat and pickled veggies), served up in palm-sized steamed breads. And a crunchy Ham Keong — calamari sprinkled in a Malaysian sauce and coated in a light-as-air batter. Although the appetiser portions are very generous, we did sample the mains too.

    On the mains
    Chasu Ramen, a bowl of wet noodles with lots of interesting add-ons was not really my thing,  although my dining companion loved the rich pork broth, paper-thin slices of pork belly bacon and soft-boiled eggs it came with. Do try the braised beef jungle curry, here. While it can clear your sinuses in an instant, it also wakes up your taste buds. And it goes perfectly with a serving of fragrant jasmine rice. I was told to return for the asparagus and bacon fried rice, which Chandra describes as the perfect comfort food.
    Naturally, a menu this well-planned had to have something for the sweet tooth. We tried a medley of cold and warm desserts — a light fruity mango pannacotta and a deliciously warm fig and candied ginger pudding. And all this for a very reasonable price.

    Meal for two with drinks is Rs. 2,000.  At 12th Main, Indiranangar. Details: 44114499

    — Jackie Pinto

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