It is news when in a real estate-crunched city like Pune you have a restaurant that’s bagged a space that spans 15,000 sq ft. It is rare still to walk into a restaurant that is that big; a restaurant with an indoor section, a huge outdoor dining area and even an amphitheatre. Without an intention to compare, when you walk in, Classic Rock feels like High Spirits v 2.0, mature and mammoth-sized. Its sprawling premises promises to easily harbor about 1500 revelers. And where they score over lots of restaurants is their parking lot that can accommodate almost 200 vehicles. Obviously, their manning is huge with 80 people on the payroll.
Cocktails & Coffee
At Classic Rock, they take both their coffee and cocktails very seriously. Let’s talk Arabica first. They source their coffee beans from Kerala and even have a glistening silver roasting machine on site. Beans are roasted and grinded, so you’re guaranteed a freshly brewed Cappuccino (Rs 140). If you’re interested in some coffee grounds, they are even happy to sell it to you. They take their coffee so seriously, you’ll even find two large coffee mug-shaped wash basins in the restrooms as testimony of their love for the beans. Coffee finds its way even into their signature Black Beauty (Rs 300), a smooth dark rum-based cocktail. Talking about spirits, we recommend their White Snake (Rs 200), with passion-fruit syrup cutting through undertones of white rum, spiked with lemon wedges and kaffir lime leaves.
Music that rocks
Within its first month of opening, Classic Rock played host to the Kandisa crooners Indian Ocean. The concert was a raving success bringing in a footfall of 1200 music lovers each on a reasonable cover charge. The amphitheatre will continue to be a monthly host to big names in rock music. We hear Karsh Kale is up next. Classic Rock also has Pune’s most popular singers, the sibling duo Willy and Fortuna performing live music every evening. Wednesday nights are Tribute Nights and Thursdays are dedicated to Karaoke and the ladies with some specials.
While music is an area of prime focus, it’s the food that really takes center stage at Classic Rock. Their menu is a mix of Asian, continental and Italian cuisine. The chef made us a stunning homemade Mushroom Ravioli (Rs 350), each large dumpling encasing a generous mushroom roux stuffing bursting with earthy flavours. The Thai Red Curry (Rs 200) also impressed us – it was thick, creamy and spicy with tender chicken pieces accompanying steamed rice. Try out the stuffed cheddar mushrooms (Rs 250) with juicy button mushrooms and melted cheese creating a symphony of flavours. Better still is their garlic dip accompanying this dish – acidic and pungent, the dip is creamy and smooth, and they’ll happily serve you more of it and even pack it for you to go. We hear their Chicken Biryani (Rs 200) has had diners raving and coming back for more. Their pricing is also justified by their portion sizes.
Something for Everybody
Over and above a restaurant, Classic Rock aims to be a cultural and community centre. It has hosted a Zumba class for hundreds and they plan to make Yoga sessions a Sunday morning regular event. The biking fraternity has also found their new home at Classic Rock – Harley owners ride in, park their beloved bike inside the restaurant and grab a quick beer with their mean machines well within their sight. A spin off of the ‘drive-in movie’ concept for bikers is also on the charts. From arts and craft classes to salsa dance nights, there’s something for everyone to look forward to at Classic RockCoffee Co.
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