Explore over 300 board games while enjoying freshly-made sandwiches at this Board Game Cafe
Picture this: a room crowded with groups of youngsters, cheering for a friend who has to help them get off a sinking island. On the other end is a family of four busy setting up a Jenga game. The passageways are filled with spectators, either admiring the pop illustrations on the wall or searching for new games to play. This is my view at the newly opened Get On Board — Board Game Cafe in Jubilee Hills, on a Friday afternoon.
Opened a week ago, Board Game Cafe offers more than 300 games — all of them belonging to a personal collection of founders: Sirisha and Bhujanga Rao. “We’ve been playing board games extensively for about 15 years. Our collection has as many as 700 games. We’ll be stocking them up gradually,” says the city-based entrepreneur duo. Since the cafe sees a mix of crowd (gamers and non-gamers), they have a dedicated ‘Game guru’ to help customers choose their game (depending on the level of complexity and experience) and understand the rules of it. “Some games are high on strategy, while others are mostly energy games like puzzles,” adds Sirisha.
Find your pattern
Without wasting any time, we sit down to play. After a warm-up session with Dobble (a rather simple pattern recognition game for beginners), we move on to try Tickets To Ride, which we’re told is one of the most selling games in the world (about four million copies). In this one, players claim railway routes and complete missions in order to build the longest continuous route. The best thing about Board Game Cafe is that there are almost no restrictions. Once you pay the entrance fee (Rs.100 per hour / Rs.299 for a day), you can spend your time playing any of the board games as long as you want. You can also pause your game and take a break. While we’re busy trying to make a deft move to build our path, the first dish arrives.
With a generous filling of grilled chicken, topped with grilled onions, jalapeños and lots of mayonnaise, Tex Mex Burger has soft buns, with a slightly crunchy stuffing, courtesy nachos. My companions opt for Gun Powder Paneer (paneer tandoor-cooked in gunpowder and served with mint chutney) — spicy and delicious.
For main course, we savour the Nilgiri Kodi Pulao. You could pair this coriander flavoured rice (cooked with succulent chicken pieces) with gongura chutney for a tangy flavour. With cuisines such as North Indian, Continental and Chinese, the menu is rather elaborate.
After the meal, we grab a glass of refreshing Berry Blast (strawberry, blueberry and black currant smoothie), and take a quick tour of the cafe with Bhujanga, who shows us the vast shelves of games. Here’s calling all the pop-culture aficionados to indulge in their chosen fandom-themed game — be it Harry Potter or Game Of Thrones — even as they get to sip on a Filter Kaapi.
Price for two: Rs.600.