RYU Gurgaon pairs crafty cocktails with Asian street food and boasts of a dreamy rooftop in the midst of the millennial city.
Opened just weeks before the lockdown, RYU Gurgaon had to shut doors like all others when the pandemic hit in full swing. However, as things inch towards normalcy, the resto-bar is open again, with its ample space, hearty food, and curated cocktails.
My first time dining out in seven months, I expected the experience to be drastically different from what we knew it as pre-coronavirus. However, perhaps we’re so used to masks, sanitisers, and keeping a distance that it’s almost second nature, it didn’t seem too alien as one may expect. The servers have a mask and gloves on at all times, a sanitiser bottle is provided for each table, and the cutlery comes hygienically wrapped in paper bags for only the diner to touch. Although, the tables aren’t at a distance, and a group that arrived was seated the adjoining table despite the floor being empty in the afternoon (of course I shifted post that).
Situated in the city’s new food hub, 32nd Avenue, RYU Gurgaon is spread across two floors—one indoor and one terrace—and is a sprawling restaurant cum nightclub. The ample seating means you can choose between large windows or dim lighting, and the terrace is perfect for good weather. The decor leans towards showy yet blends into the background easily. The staff, while not clued into the patrons’ preferences, is dedicated to serving well.
The restaurant turns into a nightclub, hence there’s an emphasis on cocktails. These have been curated by Eric, an award-winning mixologist from Malaysia—also where the owner, Shyam Thakur, has helmed F&B establishments. The latter has been the founder-director for Anakron Club and China Bar Exclusive in Kuala Lumpur, and now heads RYU and Momo King in India. His penchant for cocktails means you have tipples for moods—fruity, light, smokey, experimental, strong. The Whiskey Sour and Gin Pina Colada are one of the nicest tasting ones you’ll have. The alcohol and fruity flavours are well layered, and you get to evenly taste all in every sip. They offer over 50 signature cocktails and have sake and shochu as well.
The food menu is largely pan-Asian, with the Indian appearance in the form of momos, and interestingly, a kebab platter. The latter has been added because people like it with their drinks; my server explains—which goes on to emphasise the focus on drinks at RYU Gurgaon. The RYU Chicken Pop is a must-try. These drumsticks have a mildly crunchy exterior leading into a falls-off-the-bone chicken. The dim sums (Chicken, Chilli Vinegar & Microgreens) and momos (Mushroom in Nepali Choila sauce) hit the mark and live up to the reputation of being fun food. The sushi is average and can be skipped. The Thai Crispy Vegetable Lemon Chilli is a must for vegetarians and will be appreciated by carnivores too.
If it’s cocktail hour or a straight drinks meet-up that you’re planning, then visit RYU Gurgaon. Their food is meant to accompany the tipples and fits that bill—the comforting flavour you want when downing glasses. While you can go on a date here, it’s ideal for large groups.
Where: 32nd Avenue, Gurgaon
Contact: +91 89203 21500
Opening hours: 12 pm to 12:30 am
Recommended dishes: RYU Chicken Pop, Gin Pina Colada
Price: Rs 2,500 for two (including alcohol, taxes extra)
Noise levels: Low to high, depending on day or night time
All images: Courtesy RYU