Perhaps after a long day's work, the safest option is to go back home and unwind within the comforts of your bed or sofa. But why pick the safest option, when you can try something new?
Barc, a speakeasy bar located in BlueBird Mall, Tripureshwor, is the perfect location for people looking to explore epicurean cocktails and renditions of their favourite drinks. Open 6 days a week, Barc welcomes their customers starting at 4 pm every evening.
With emerald green walls and minimalistic furniture, Barc plays on with a chic and moody aesthetic. As you enter, you are greeted with a light sound of jazz music and an overwhelming sense of wonder: BlueBird Mall is predominantly an office complex, which is why people wouldn’t usually anticipate finding a place like Barc in this area. Hidden and intimate, it is coincidentally very on theme for a speakeasy bar. Additionally, Bluebird has an independent parking space, which saves people the hassle of scrambling to park their vehicles.
A joint effort between Abhishek Tuladhar and Adarsha Tamrkar, Barc was officially established in September 2021.
“I started my bartending journey in 2015 or 16 when I was in Singapore. I learned how to make cocktails because it was really expensive over there”, smiled Abhishek. He then pursued his training as a mixologist in London. After coming back to Nepal, he realised that the cocktails available in the industry weren’t the best and often lacked a sense of innovation. Marking the potential within the market he sought the opportunity to start something of his own. Initially starting with a few pop ups and events, he eventually opened Barc with his friend, Adarsha.
Adarsha himself shares quite the penchant for flavours and food- actively maintaining an Instagram profile dedicated to capturing his recipes and food. “While coming up with the right menu for Barc, we didn’t want to do what other Restaurant-Bars have done, but the demand still remains within the classics. Since I have a lot of knowledge regarding food, I put my own twist onto familiar dishes.”
‘‘We still cater to the Nepali palette, but we have incorporated the flavours of various pan-asian cuisines.’’
The Pork Momo with Chilli Oil for instance, sounds like an ordinary dish, but even within one bite, the difference is striking. The soft, pleated dough and seasoned pork filling cascade into a mellow soup taking a rather niche approach to the beloved Nepali dish. The chilli oil adds a slight spice to the existing flavours while the microgreens garnished over the delicacy adds a fresh texture to the already delightful dish.
“While we don’t serve burgers, we have sliders- and there’s a twist to that as well!” remarked Adarsha.
The Black Bun Sliders, elegantly perched upon a wooden platter was a sight to behold. With activated charcoal infused into the dough, the buns held a dark hue- beyond likes of anything we had seen before. The smoked mozzarella potatoes, paired with caramelised onions, microgreens and coleslaw were a combination to die for.
But Barc isn’t all about the food,or rather, the food is just a preamble to the variety of cocktails that are offered within their vast menu.
Starting with their crowd favourite, the Bloody Nepali. While the name sounds rather morbid to the ear, the tantalising flavours of this cocktail, leaves every drinker wanting more. Far from subtle, this bold drink is spicy, loud and incredibly unique. Combining the flavours of vodka and titaura mix, it hits all the right spots- a bloody good drink indeed
What drew us to Love Me Long Time was its peculiar name. The blend of Coriander Gin, LemonGrass Syrup, Tamarind Juice and Black Walnut Bitters created a concoction of flavours that were exactly what we didn’t expect. Slightly sour and zesty, Love me Long time gave us a lot to love and remember.
Blueberry Hill, on the other hand, was a fruity drink. A mix of gin, blueberry puree, lemon and pineapple juice, this tropical mix was refreshing beyond belief, the perfect concoction for a summer day.
Khattu, a mix of vodka, Khattu Paun , lime juice and simple syrup, was perfectly tempered to my taste. Slightly sour, with a surprising tinge of sweetness, this drink offers so much more than what meets the eye.
“One of the best feedback we’ve received is that our team is lovely. They are always ready to help, with a smile on their face and they also remember you.” remarked Abhisekh. To which Rajani Malla, a member of the Barc team added, “We also make an effort to build a personal connection with our customers, we remember what they like and what they don't like and accordingly we recommend them drinks.” The camaraderie shared between the team members at Barc is eminent in the spirit that is upheld behind the counter.
The twists at Barc are ones that always surprise and delight. The specials are refreshed on a monthly basis, always leaving their customers with something new and innovative to try.
By handling their dishes and drinks with the utmost care and finesse, Barc sets itself as the standard for cocktail bars throughout Nepal