Mumbai’s love for art deco is never-ending. If you ask us, it’s the very basis of the city’s architectural comfort zone and the latest space to uphold this obsession is the city’s new microbrewery, Thirsty City 127. With its trademark art deco interiors, engraved walls and it’s spectacular bar area inspired from Mumbai’s avant-garde years dating back to the 1950s, it’s a place where microbrewery meets cocktail menu. The owner Vir Kotak started it all with his import business that got China’s iconic lager Tsingtao and the Bavarian wheat beer Schneider Weisse into India which was then followed by Thirsty Beers, a home-grown brand he created that got us introduced to Happy (a light lager) and Simona (a full-bodied German wheat beer) manufactured in Eastern Europe. Importing is just not enough for this maverick, and so he began brewing his own beers and Thirsty City 127, a concept bar was born.
Situated at Mumbai’s iconic Todi Mills of Lower Parel, the entrance greets you with a large area designated to be an occasional art gallery. We preferred having a seat next to their glorified bar, which made for a more social spot. The 127 isn’t exactly the perfect place for a private conversation, it’s buzzing with office goers and regular after-work conversations. The wrought iron grills that seem to permeate the decor are designed to perfection with beer motifs – think ears of barley and wheat. The bar stands at 4,000 sq. ft and the gallery is converted into a dedicated space for art shows, workshops, pop-ups, music shows and more.
Food & Service
The service was prompt and welcoming and the staff had a great understanding of their menu – a trait that really needs applause considering how difficult it is to find informed and enthusiastic staff in the city. The food curated by Chef Gracian D’souza was a delight. Our Malaysian Chicken Satay and the Oven Roasted Pork Ribs were succulent and easy on the palette. The table favourite was the Seafood lime and chilly, with prawns cooked to perfection and seasoned well. We were later graced with the El Chapo, a Salsa Verde and buffalo mozzarella pizza that got us going accompanied by the Mushroom Pate that needed a bit more punch. The grills were the best part of the meal – and getting your ribs right is an art, so brownie points on that. But it is the drinks that can seal the deal for us.
The menu comprises of three sections of the bar menu, the beer, cocktails and the wine. We started off the evening with a Beet Tapache and a Carmine, both made for excellent cocktails to be accompanied by seafood. Carmine would be our top recommendation if you’d like to indulge in a berry-fused gin cocktail with a subtly bitter Italian zing to it. Being a whiskey enthusiast, we tried the Gravity Clarity, textbook Penicillin clarified with milk and gravity smoked with Islay whiskey. Off the Cob, as the name suggests blends butter corn with whiskey with a tinge of dark chocolate liqueur and lemon. Indulge in a Spice Trade whiskey cocktail if you’re feeling adventurous that tilts towards sugar-spices and vanilla. The idea is clear by now, it’s a cocktail bar that uses beer – not your quintessential beer brewery that occasionally serves up drama. Rohan Jelkie of Bar Back Collective, Delhi-based beverage consultants is the brain behind the drink menu.
For us, 127 would definitely make for an interesting post-work eatery and cocktail bar, a fancy one than your regular industry-chic cookie-cutter fare. Gin and Vodka, may be on the back seat but their eclectic sense of mixology is no slouch when it comes to reinventing the classics. The space is more tuned to a group dinner scene than a table for two – that’s for sure and that glass of Gravity Clarity makes it a frontrunner for good conversations straightaway.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun, 6 pm – 1:30 am
Address: Todi Mill Compound, Mathuradas Mills ,Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel Mumba
Recommended drinks and dishes: Oven Roasted Pork Ribs & Seafood Lime and Chilly, Gravity Clarity & Carmine
Price: Approx Meal for 2 with a cocktail each will be Rs 3500 + taxes approx.
Noise Levels: High at bar section, moderate at the art gallery/secondary seating area, includes music.
Service: Responsive and informed about the menu