Review: Relish the scrumptious flavours of Europe and Asia at Pune’s newly opened Butter — Bar & Kitchen
Helmed by Hrishikesh R Shinde, Sangram Shirole and Suryabhan R Shinde, the multidisciplinary bar and kitchen is surely has something for everyone to enjoy
Balewadi High Street in Pune has for now long been a hub for affordable fine dining eateries, owing to the sheer number of working spaces in the area. However, if there’s one thing that has been missing in the widespread area of multi-cuisine dining spaces, it has to be an ambient, hi-end bar with an elaborate European, Asian and Continental spread paired with some cocktails, all under a budget. Butter — Bar & Kitchen, located right on Pune’s up-and-coming energetic downtown looks quite unsuspecting from the outside, courtesy a polythene sheet cover due to rainy season, but is a whole new world once you step in. Spread over 8,000 square feet, the 180-seater outdoor and cozy indoor hi-end drinking bar and eatery specialises in modern European and Asian cuisine along with signature new-age cocktails. The restaurant invited us for tasting of delectable delicacies from their illustrious menu.
As we enter, we are welcomed by pleasant staff members who walk us to the outdoor dining space crossing the indoor space. We are enticed by the zen-like décor of the restaurant with alluring textured pink walls, elements of wood and natural stones flooring. Other striking features of the aesthetics were the festoon lighting, woven palm leaf canopies, lush tropical plants and a standout wood terracotta bar creating a bohemian paradise. The neutral aspect of the cane and wood furniture contrasted with tranquil shades of pastel colours — green, roseate, cerulean — speaks a feeling of fluid ease, warmth and joy. If you plan to sit indoors, a massive rustic stone textured bar with muted walls and curved faux leather booths and stunning dry palm leaf installation on the ceiling are sure to leave you mesmerised. We learn that the elegant interior complementing the carefully designed furniture is meticulously designed by Mumbai-based designer Minnie Bhatt.
Decadent small plates
As we settle in, we glance at the menu and find that the spotlight of the menu is bite-sized food and small plates, which comprises at least 60 dishes of tapas and small bites. We are told that the extensive menu is curated to complement their illustrious experimental drink menu. We started with Flamed Pimento Hummus, with a homemade pita. We loved the hummus with a hint of paprika topped with olives. The next on our table was their highly recommended Tomato Feta Salad which, to our surprise was the most delicious dish among all that we sampled. Curated by Delhi-based chef Shailendra, Butter’s exclusive La Charcuterie includes a decadent selection of bespoke cold cuts served with crackers, jam and chutney.
Other interesting small bites on the menu included Spicy Mushroom Dimsum, Kofku Ji Crystals, Peppered Bamboo Sui Mai, Bacon Wrapped Quail, Chorizo Benedictine, Steamed Seabass and much more. Don’t miss to try their dimsums they come not only with different fillings but in attractive colours making for perfect Instagram pictures. There is also a wide selection of bowls for mains, especially the Thai curries paired with rice, Crab Raviolo, Kunyit Curry and Truffled Edamame Riso bowls. We tried Indonesian-style Kunyit Vegetable Curry with Jasmine Rice, enough for two people.
We finished our meal with desserts, Godiva Cookie served with in-house orange and thyme ice cream, and Bread Butter Jam, an interesting version of traditional pana cotta finished with pistachio baguette and rhubarb compote, making it a delightful end to a scrumptious meal.
We recommend their Japanese Cheesecake which comes with lotus biscoff cream and bubble ice cream.
Drink for the mood
As a plethora of dishes made their way to our tables, and eventually our hearts we were left spoilt for choice when it came to trying the best amongst all — ingenious and meticulously curated drinks from their bold beverage menu. Created by mixologist Nitin Tewari and Suyash Pande, each drink on the menu incorporates meticulous techniques and an intricate preparation process. Some of these distinguish methods include barrel-aging, clarifying, smoking, butter-washing and sous vide infusion, clearly exceeding the current norms of bartending.
Interestingly, the cocktail menu is dedicated to the creative arts including, dancing, photography, theatre, cinema, painting and poetry each holding meaning and aptly reflecting its ingredients. For instance, theatre is an art that depicts maturity and just as artistes are seasoned by honing their skills and aging on stage, their signature cocktail the Phantom of Opera, stars a barrel-aged floral tequila and another drink Westside Story features spiced rum. Dance lovers can check out The Waltz, a watermelon, gin and peanut butter drink that’s as smooth as the dance form it's named after. Those with an eye for photography can savour The 1950s Polaroid, a cocktail made with cocoa butter-washed tequila with jalapeno and lime. In the cinema section, The Action features green apple, vodka and sparkling wine to create a flavour-packed drink; while The Rom-Com is a sweeter, lighter drink made of gin, berry sorbet and sparkling wine. The Sci-fi Section is a bright and beautiful — pea flower gin, basil, elderflower, sparkling wine and edible glitter — this unexpected combination makes for a truly unique and delicious drink.
If you are a scotch lover and don’t want to experiment, we recommend trying their Tyger Tyger Burning Bright, a whiskey, nutmeg, ginger and smoke concoction as lyrical as the poetry by William Blake, and Deep Copper, a whiskey, spice and butter spice soda drink from the poetry and painting sections. In case, there is space for more, try Ballet, whiskey, vanilla ginger, Jäger and milk wash, a finished drink just like the regal and fine dance form. Each drink has 60 ml of liquor with other infusions. The ones who decide to go sober can choose from their low-key section. We recommend Butter Spitzer — elderflower, cucumber, mint and tonic water.
Helmed by Hrishikesh R Shinde, Sangram Shirole and Suryabhan R Shinde the multidisciplinary bar and kitchen surely has something for everyone to enjoy. More so, when you meet 31-year-old mechanical engineer turned restaurateur Suryabhan in-house who helps you with a perfect selection for your meal as well as drinks as per your mood of the day.
Price for two: INR 1,500 + taxes for two (without alcohol)
INR: 2,500 + taxes for two (with alcohol)
Timings: 12 pm to 1.30 am.