Alcohol not served here, thank you!

Serene Atmosphere

Alcohol not served here, thank you!

In a city that prides itself for being called the ‘Pub City’ of the country, it is interesting to find bistros that choose not to serve alcohol.

Their customers may have suggested that the ambience of the place would really lend itself to, say, a glass of beer. But for whatever reason, the owners don’t wish to have the ‘alcohol served here’ tag to their bistros.

Metrolife speaks to some bistros that fall under the ‘no alcohol’ category to understand their reasons for this.

“For us, the idea has always been to keep ‘Coffee on Canvas’ as an art bistro. We want to have a relaxed ambiance where people of different ages can come and discuss things. We wouldn’t want to mix alcohol with that experience,” shares Lilia Jose, who runs the bistro located in Koramangala.

“Other than that, getting a bar license is a very expensive investment and we aren’t interested in that right now. But we are considering getting a licence to serve wine in the future,” she adds.

Ramya, who owns ‘Socie-tea’ in Indiranagar, explains why she was never inclined to go for an alcohol joint and preferred opening a bistro instead.

“For one thing, the monetary risks are quite high. Another direct deterrent is the fact that the government has stopped issuing new licenses. Plus, bar licenses are extremely expensive to lease out,” she reasons, adding, “thanks to the timing in Bangalore for shutting down pubs and bars, it isn’t feasible.”

Another point she makes is that support from the councillors, local municipal authorities or corporators is very little unless one pays a heavy bribe.

In some places, alcohol does not go with what the place stands for, as is the case with ‘Mr Soup and Mrs Salad’ or ‘Green Theory’, which target health-conscious foodies.

Understandably, a small place selling idli-dosa wouldn’t find any takers for alcohol either.
Not surprisingly, these places are still frequented by youngsters who need not be teetotalers, but still find it a pleasant and welcome change from the usual way of things.

“It’s refreshing to go and relax at places that don’t serve alcohol, especially since there aren’t too many around that don’t. In college, hanging out with friends usually went hand-in-hand with a few drinks.

But as you grow older, you appreciate playing a board game or just having a quiet evening over coffee instead of beer,” admits Megha Bisaria, a young professional.

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