Like any starlet worth her salt, this corner space in GK-III knows that to make a comeback it needs more than subtle nips and tucks. And so a flamboyant lip job and multiple ass plumpers later what began as Smokehouse Grill and later morphed to Smokeys now debuts as the new Paparazzi.
Paparazzi's predictable Fifty-Shades-boudoir vibe is announced at the restaurant's entrance with the help of a red high-backed chair, spotlight lamps and an eerie smoke machine. Interiors are dressed in chandeliers, a designated dance floor, leather and suggestive burlesque photographs. BYOP.
Naturally, we started with drinks. While naming cocktails after famous scandals is an entertaining throwback to the theme, we judged ours by their potency, promptly returning a Tommy Lee Margarita that's missing a salt rim and is loaded with agave syrup. Bloody Bolly Mary is a far more seasoned actor, offering an appropriate vodka-tabasco throat catch and clever addition of dill pepper for added heat. Jenners Gin Bramble Fizz is a fizzy hit of gin, sparkling wine and blackberry juice, a debutante drink eager to please.
You’re Projecting Again
The food menu is an ensemble cast, of well, everything. Kala Jhinga arrives well marinated with that specific Andhra spice and a distinct black pepper pop. This is our favourite dish of the evening. While significant portions of the menu are unavailable (pan-seared prawns, wild mushroom dumplings), those that are suffer from stage fright.
Dahi ke kebabs have a soft cloud-centre but are woefully oil-slicked. Sliced pork with basil and thai chilies is tough and overcooked. Sweet and chilli lotus stem is a crowd pleaser, with its sticky crunch that works well with drinks.
Like troopers then, we make a meal of our cocktails.
Bobby Brown Derby, a pungent and smoky swirl of bourbon, spiced honey and fresh grapefruit juice inspires us almost to burst into that classic Whitney declaration of love. Crowe’s Nest Elderflower Spritzer with its cucumber freshness balancing a potent shot of vodka is another good choice. Bruno Bruno Puka Puka comes last and strongest, a thick mix of bourbon, bitters, angostura, orange and lime juice - different moving parts brought together in a drink so smooth we forget how strong it is.
Here’s where we called fade out.
Getting there: 2 VIPPS Centre, LSC Masjid Moth, GK-3 (Look for the Gk-3 Smokeys). Call 9711190991. Rs. 7050 for drinks and dinner for two.
Accessibility: Ground-floor entry and a spacious layout, but first floor access is up a flight of stairs.
bpb reviews anonymously and pays for its own meals.
This review was contributed by Kakul Gautam who blogs at hyperbolemuch.blogspot.com
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