It’s never a good sign when the oil is so far past its burning point that you can smell it in the streets. But tweens in their clubby Friday best debating long and hard about the most important decision they’ll ever make - pizza fries or cheese mayo? - forces us to push past our better judgement. We march through to 100 Ft Road’s new chip shop, The J, and are completely unsurprised to spot portable charging stations at the tables, should your phone battery need some juice in the middle of an Insta-story upload.
Orange Is the New Black
The decor is hot pink, white and black, and does not feature a single seat, underlining exactly how old they expect you to be (not very). On the wall is the tag line in bright, bold lettering: ‘Spread the love, pass on the J’. In the long minutes that pass as we wait to place our order, it serves a koan to focus on to distract ourselves from our rumbling tummies. A smoke screen, if you will.
After a longer wait than most upscale sit-down restaurants will dare subject you to, the nostalgia-tinged Orange Tang we ordered arrives just in time to drench our salty, parched throats. A Nutella Monaco milk shake made with vanilla ice cream, Monaco biscuits and Nutella, is rich and delicious, leaving traces of salty butteriness that linger long past the chocolate.
With more than 30 different combinations to choose from, it is understandable if your brain feels, forgive us, fried.
The nacho fries attempt to end the cruel dilemma by anyone who’s ever held up the refreshments queue at the movies, trying to choose between these two crispy snacks at intermission. Tortilla chips and fries are tossed together in a generous amount of salsa and beans and finished with a blob of sour cream. The beans are baked and not the refried variety; so, inadvertently, this dish takes you from Mexico to Belgium with a pit stop in England.
‘Magic chicken masala’ fries taste a lot better than they sound, and although not exactly magical, do indicate what makes kids crazy about The J. The chicken is shredded finely to a near-floss texture, and doesn’t get in the way of the fried noodles, which, really is what we ordered this for. Fish and chips, although strait-laced and a relatively conservative choice, prove to be a treat - crumb fried fish fingers, with tartar sauce and a wedge of lime, this rather classes up the J. Pass it if feeling generous; but in spite of the late-evening-vada-stall smell, don’t feel like you have to pass by.
Getting there: 1134, Ground Floor, 100 Feet Road, HAL 2nd stage, Indiranagar, Bangalore; call 9008150323; take away available. A meal for two costs around Rs 500.
Accessibility: A short flight of stairs leads to the restaurant.
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