This past Sunday, Bombay Brunch Brigade kicked off it’s inaugural brunch at Olive Bar & Kitchen in Bandra. The entrance to Olive is discreet so I happened to miss it. I later learnt that one is meant to know about the place and not discover it, though I feel that it would be a delightful place to chance on. Olive is big on the party scene from what I have heard and is frequented by celebrities that live in Bandra.
By no means is the space innovative but it is definitely refreshing for Bombay – an elegant rustic and relaxed space. Going to Olive Bar & Kitchen is like taking a local vacation, the outdoor space is bright with natural light in abundance, light usage indoors is also minimal during brunch time. The bright white walls and comfortable well-sized furniture definitely transports you away from the hustle and bustle of Bombay – to a Mediterranean paradise.
We sat outdoors as suggested but did not get a table under the awning so it did get a little hot but it definitely was a pleasant day to be outdoors. The brunch consisted of; a spread of antipasti and salads, a kebab station, pizzas and pastas. They also had an impressive list of bottomless cocktails, a selection of red and white wines, champagne and martinis.
I started of with some refreshing sangria, followed by some more sangria and then after the first two rounds of drinks we were ready to nibble on some antipasti and salads. A Mediterranean flare, the spread was expansive but not excessive; included salads like cous cous and caprese. Deviled eggs topped off with caviar were delectable. The humus was creamy but lacked consistency, and the accompanied pita chips were too crunchy, I personally would have preferred some pita bread. The harissa dip was good and the taziki was refreshing.
Further drinking elevated our conversations to a new level of ridiculousness. I switched over from Sangria to the Jalapeno Mary, an jalapeno infused bloody mary that was just perfect. Other table selections included water melon martini, breakfast martini, mojitos and we called for some champagne as well. Rather than ordering individual entrées we ordered some pizza for the table; a margherita pizza, a bbq chicken pizza and a pizza with chorizo and peppers. We also ordered some kebabs from the kebab station which included; a platter of paneer and peppers, lamb chops, calamari, baby lobster, fish tikka and prawns.
The best part about brunch is that you do not have to wait to get desserts so while we were waiting on our pizzas and kebabs we helped ourselves to some delicious desserts. The dessert counter was fairly expansive, the tiramisu cake, a hot fudge cake and rum on raisins were decent but I really enjoyed the chocolate covered strawberries and the cocktail sized trifle pudding. By the time our pizzas and kebabs arrived we were very satisfied with drinks and desserts. The thin crispy pizza was inviting but not as tasty. The kebabs were strictly okay but by then we were so consumed in our mindless banter that we did not care much.
The service is slow and the servers not as attentive but when called for they do respond promptly. While we did have a good time due to great company, some live music would have been good. We did spot Arunoday Singh, an actor in the making at Olive with a friend (or date) having a good time.
At the beginning of our brunch, Amishi said, “Drink at your own peril” and that we did. A good time was had by all. The food is not much to speak of as there are hits and misses on the menu but the experience works wonders. It is the perfect place for an outdoor lazy brunch (minus the flies) when you have the time and want a breather from the madness that is Bombay.
After brunch a few of us took a leisurely stroll along the promenade of Carter Rd. Bombay Brunch Brigade meets once a month. The purpose of this group is to meet – have fun, find a travel partner, a date(may be), share brain farts and savour brunches. We will be exploring different brunch places all over Bombay. Join our Facebook group for the next brunch date and location information.