There's something darkly contradictory about Kammanahalli's newest. Inside the dimly lit indoors at Giselle Resto Cafe, Justin Bieber’s on the playlist but Coke cans double as bar décor; Johnny Bravo and Iron Man (two favourite men at very different times in our lives), share real estate on the walls. The only signs of the ballet are in its name. Instead of a barre, there’s an actual bicycle mounted on the wall, complete with flowers in the basket and origami birds in flight. Spokes volumes, really.
If the earnest customer service acronyms at the door have you questioning your choice of restaurant, may we suggest you see it as harmless as Tokyo Bon's delightful Japanglish, take a seat outdoors, and dive straight into cocktails. This space is much more reassuring than the dining room: bright and sunny with bamboo and frangipani, it is perfect for a frothy, boozy lunch with the girls - by which we refer to this Shirley Temple, made with ginger ale and grenadine, so refreshing with its rim of black salt that we barely missed our maraschino cherry.
This writer never says no to a purple cocktail but recommends you learn from our faux pas (de deux): the Revitaliser, a ginger-heavy cocktail (with no trace of the summer promises of pineapple and pamplemousse) disappoints on all counts, except of course, its hue.
In times of trouble, only your family will come through. Sure enough, Uncle Andy Chicken proves to be the star of the night — fillets of tender chicken in a thick and wonderfully crunchy batter. If only a dreaded spicy mayo that also helped ruin a plate of mozzarella sticks wasn’t interloping.
Crust Fund Babies
If you eat one kind of cuisine in Kammanahalli it should be Korean food, but once you’ve had your fill of kimchi fried rice, Giselle offers reprieve in the form of wood-fired pizza. A stuffed cheese pie comes with an easily missable quantity of cheese in the crust. Topped with bell peppers, baby corn, olives, jalapeños and more cheese, it’s definitely one of the drier pizzas you’ll find around town, but will do in an emergency as long as no Italians are accompanying you.
We also check on the extremely annoyingly-named Man’s Steak, and can confirm that this masculinity is toxic. Medallions of beef, cooked to very (very) well done, and served with an insipid Old Monk-infused brown sauce, it reminds us of the leathery steaks of our childhood in the worst possible way.
The ballet Giselle does end with heartbreak and death, but we are luckier. The Giselle Sundae swoops in to the rescue with three scoops of vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream on a bed of crumbly chocolate cake, unusually feathered with cornflakes. This has all been a bit Odette-Odile, but there’s enough sweetness here to end it all gracefully.
Getting there: 13, Captain Munshie layout, Kammanahalli, Bangalore; call 917259395040. A meal for two costs approximately Rs 2,000.
Accessibility: A short flight of stairs leads to the restaurant.
Wake up to daily updates on what to eat/shop/do in your city