Hotel F+B

The Times of India



When the blue mood strikes...

There are cocktails. And then, there are cocktails with an imaginative flair that actually work as mood enhancers.



Top this with a bartender who gauges moods intuitively, suggesting just the right ingredients to take you to the next level, and your evening is made!

Try the newly opened The Blue Bar at Taj Palace. Provided Bartender Nicholas Hawkins is in his element and you in the right mood, the experience is bound to be uplifting. If you do not like the cocktail he conjures for you, I am willing to swallow my words, stirred and shaken, in the next infusion this bartender from London concocts for me!

There is nothing blue about The Blue Bar – mood, color, nor lighting. The first thing that strikes you is the seductive symphony of the place. It’s as if the deep red chairs, the rippling effect of lighting and the black carpet with diamante sparkle conspire to lend a sexy quotient. As a result, you glide in rather than walk, and feel generally happy with life as you soak in the ambience. The bar manages to achieve classy elegance infused with welcoming warmth.

Infusions are what inspire Nick. He waves away my request for the safe and well-tested Mojito, suggesting a martini instead. Leftfield (Rs 450) has Tanqueray gin and aged balsamic vinegar with elderflower cordial. The flavors from the drink rise to tickle the senses before hitting the tastebuds – the experience is guaranteed to take you someplace else! Another interesting concoction is Open Sesame (Rs 450) – sesame seeds muddled with vanilla sugar, honey and fresh pineapple shaken with Makers Mark bourbon.

For a unique experience, do try Cigar Infused Woodfords Reserve Manhattan (Rs 650) – sheer bourbon for a while in your mouth, and then the cigar flavour kicks in.

Only the finest spirits will do for The Blue Bar cocktails. Amongst brands the bar houses are Hendrik’s Gin; Maker’s Mark bourbon, the American whisky with a Scottish heritage; Grey Goose and Ketel One Vodka; Rhum Clement, one of the world’s purest rums; Patron Anejo Tequila, premium tequila to be savored like fine scotch, and more. The bar has around 56 varieties of single malts and a wine list of more than 450, of which 20 are served by the glass along with champagne. For eats, you could try the bratwurst (Rs 1200), oysters (Rs 1500), smoked pepper infused chicken morsels (Rs 650) or goat cheese with piri-piri olives (Rs 400), but if you are a bacon fan, don’t miss the Pancetta crisps with fig and orange dip (Rs 650). Of course if you plan to gorge on Vietnamese fare next door at the new Blue Ginger, skip snacks here.

The music played enhances the mood of the place and is conducive to conversation – a rarity in Delhi bars! Want a bit more quiet? Step out with your drink into the alfresco area and sink into comfortable couches as you enjoy the Taj lawns and poolside view.

The Blue Bar is all set to offer serious competition to its sister concern, Rick’s at Taj Mansingh, which has won the Times Nightlife Guide Award for Best Cocktails for five consecutive years. If The Blue Bar can maintain quality and consistency, they surely will be strong contenders.

So, the only Blue that needs to be checked out today is not just the mega movie in theatres, but the Taj’s latest offering to Bacchus as well! What remains to be seen is if Delhi’s fickle swivellers will swing to The Blue Bar in a big way. If they do, they may stay.

The Blue Bar | Taj Palace Hotel
Category: Bar & Alfresco
Opening hours : 12.30 pm - 1 am  (All Days)
Dress code: Smart casual; no flip flops or shorts
Capacity: 65 seated

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