Yesterday afternoon was a welcome visit to Couchyn after a couple of months. I don’t go out to drink much anymore and prefer to buy my booze from BevCo and drink at home. But it’s been over a month since cousin Sujith and I met so we decided to get a couple of beers at Couchyn and have lunch there.
We started off with Amstel beers, two each, and choose French fries as the first accompaniment. They also provide you with free masala peanuts which are always great with beer. We talked and laugh a bit. And then we got the grilled pork with veggies.
This is an amazing dish which should be in the hall of fame as far as food in Kochi goes. Succulent and juicy and big pieces all. Wow and the grilled veggies and fries goes well with them. After the two beers we moved onto a cocktail each. We choose the passion fruit and vodka cocktail with a squeeze of lemon in it. I must say that I could knock off quite a few of those in an afternoon. Dangerous!
We also had grilled chicken sandwiches which were small but good and finished off with banana splits. And then we both had to split as it was 5 pm by then.
This is is me for the evening. Except I do not have a cat. Though I want one. I want 2 cats. Yes I want 2 cats and 2 dogs. I want my cats and 2 dogs back.
This morning after breakfast and coffee I quickly dressed, booked an Uber and went to Supply Co in Gandhinagar to check out what was in stock there in terms of alcohol. A little disappointed in what they had so I went to the BevCo self service that is right next door to them, the one I usually go to. I bought 6 beers – 2 Kingfisher Blue 650 ml botles, 2 Hunter 500 ml cans and 2 650 ml bottles of a new beer which is called Woodpecker, a wheat beer, that I had never seen before.
I’ve watched a movie (Replicas), did a video review of the film, been watching Youtube videos since 5pm and I have ordered some food for dinner. Chicken wings and a pizza which will be coming over to me via UberEats. After a couple of beers and dinner, I will watch the series finale of The Big Bang Theory and then another movie before I go to bed.
One of my wishes for this month was to try out one or two bars in 5 star hotels. It’s been a long time since I’ve been to Radisson Blu. It was back in 2015 when it was still called Dreamz Hotel before the Radisson group took over, that I was in the place for attending an office function and lunch.
So I finally I joined my cousin Sujith, who has been here a couple of times before, to visit the Ava lounge bar. We had Amstel beers, a Long Island Ice Tea each then a 340 ml Budweiser while munching on a couple of plates of delicious Afghani chicken tikka, chicken seekh kabab and tempura prawns.
When we went in at 12:34 pm the place was empty and we enjoyed the corner table and comfy cushiony seats we had. About an hour later some folks from a wedding party downstairs came in for some wine and beers and other stuff and were making a ruckus. But we still enjoyed the afternoon and I want to come in for more. Enjoy the pics!
My only agenda for today was to go and pay the advance for the new dvd/bookshelf that I am having custom built at a furniture store nearby. After I did that I went to Coucyhn for some drink and good food.
I hadn’t had any breakfast and having woken up at 9 am and the fact that it was almost 12:45 pm by then, I was starving. I ordered a half tandoori chicken and a Budweiser. That went down well indeed.
A while later I moved onto vodka. My cousin turned me onto Smirnoff Espresso vodka mixed with Coke which makes it taste a lot like iced coffee. This is awesome.
I also ordered a plated of grilled beef with veggies, which is a superb dish. They ought to market this dish a lot more.
At around 3pm I left and came back home and watched a movie. Now I’m listening to some tunes and drinking a juice.
The Cape Cod or Cape Codder is a type of cocktail made with only fruit juice and spirits. The name refers to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, a peninsula and popular tourist destination located in the eastern United States which is famous for growing cranberries. A Cape Cod is made with vodka and cranberry juice, and may be garnished with a lime wedge. Proportions vary, with sources giving a recommended vodka-to-juice ratio of 1/4, 1/3.7, 1/2 and 1/1.5, while other sources do not recommend precise proportions. Some sources recommend lime juice instead of a lime wedge garnish.
This is what I was hoping to down a few of this long weekend, while chillaxing at home. I imagined me, fried chicken for dinner, several glasses of vodka & cranberry juice. Knowing about the 4 day weekend in advance, I even purchased a set of long glasses for juice/cocktail drinks so I could enjoy drinking them in these glasses. Especially since I loved the way the vodka and Smirnoff Espresso vodka looked in similar glasses 2 weeks ago in Couchyn Bar. By the way, I actually thought I was buying just one single glass at Rs.412 + taxes and thinking it was expensive for just one and finding out that it’s actually a 6 glass set.
So anyway, I’ve had a bad cold and cough and phlegm infection since Tuesday and today the cold and cough is gone but the infection remains. Oh all the bad luck! 4 days off and if I cannot drink then I will go crazy. Well, I could drink but I don’t drink if I am unwell or recovering.
I haven’t been into Couchyn lounge bar, attached to the famous Grand Hotel, in over a year. July of 2017 was the last time I went to a bar, that was Couchyn itself, as the prices for beer and alcohol drinks went up to way beyond what i would want to pay after the ban on alcohol in non-5 star bars was lifted. The bars in the state tried to compensate or over-compensate by charging premium prices for beer (a Rs.100-120 bottle of beer from a BevCo is served for Rs.250-300 or so in bars like these.
Hence I prefer to buy my beer and vodka, and the odd rum, from BevCo, come home and order some food and cialis pricing
drink from the comfort of my home. It’s way cheaper and way convenient. The bars/restaurants are awesome since you can order and enjoy some really great hot meals.
However with apps like UberEats, Swiggy and Zomato coming in to cities like mine, going to bars has become unnecessary. I can chill my beers to a nice cold degree in my fridge or freezer and I can mix drinks in my home. I can also order pizza or any of my favourite foods from any of the best restaurants in the city and have them bring it to my home within 30 minutes and enjoy both in the comfort of casualness.
Today was the day I went to Coucyn with my cousin Sujith and we had Tandoori chicken, French fries, grilled beef, shared a club sandwich and had two beers plus two vodkas – one with Red Bull and one with Pepsi. Food was great and the drinks were awesome.
It was an awesome few hours. I miss going to bars like Couchyn and would like to go more often if only the prices were more decent.
Seeing as it is my birthday tomorrow, I decided to get myself a little gift. Not really…well yeah almost! A couple of weeks ago, during Amazon Prime week, at the office some of us were going through the various offers that were available at that time. A couple of us bought a few items and I was looking at a few things – new laptop bag, some granola bars and then I decided to check out beer mugs.
I found a few that I liked and put them in my wishlist. I looked at this one, pictured here and thought that it would be great to have one for a lark and buy it as a present for my birthday. However, a few days later when I checked the “Legends are born in August” one was out of stock while they had some in stock for some of the other months. I kept checking every day and it was still out of stock.
On Wednesday last week I message the seller, YuBingo, to see if they could get one for me and about 6 hours later I get an alert on my Amazon app stating that the August one was back in stock. I immediately placed and order for the phone and it showed that it would reach me today, August 1st. Great!
Well it actually reached me yesterday, July 31st and I happily opened the box and shot a quick video of it. No beer in the house so I made due with some mixed fruit juice a la Tropicana. It’s pretty nifty to have a frosted mug in the house. This weekend I will get some beer and enjoy a couple using my new mug.
Enjoy the pictures and here is the unboxing video, down below. Cheers!
It’s fast becoming a pain in the ass. My outlet for buying liquor is the Self-service BevCo outlet (Kerala State Beverages Corporation BevCo for short) in Gandhinagar. This is the closest Bevco outlet that is self-service to me. The reason I like the self-service ones is because I hate standing in a queue at the smaller outlets which are more in number and I have one closer to me. But the snake like queue outside them are a blight on society and it’s ridiculous to stand like that for 30-40 minutes, sometimes longer and then ask them what they have.
I prefer this – no rush, no fuss! Go in, pick a basket, browse through the aisles and pick your poison and then go and pay. A few months ago they started the option of accepting payments through debit and credit cards – YES – and that was convenient. Yeah, until mid 2017, a government beverages outlet only accepted cash! And mind you, we also had a demonetization issue in between! Anyways, what my issue with them is that they have such limited selection of beers now. No Budweiser or Magnum, Miller or Tuborg in the last few visits and this weekend when I went no Carlsberg or Heineken either. Foster is available but I hate that.
But they have the Indian brands – Goa, Black Fort, Hunter, British Empire and lots of Kingfisher! Lots of it. And some new brand that I hadn’t seen or heard of before. I am not 100% sure but the other outlets seem to have more stuff and stuff that I want. I might have to check out ConsumerFed’s Liquor store or another self-service BevCo because others have said that they have better stock.
It’s been a very long time since I’ve been to a bar. Last year in July infact. Why? The reason is money. After the two year alcohol ban in bars and hotels in the state that are not 5 star (a fucking stupid decision by the stupid old corrupt asshole who formed the government in Kerala bowing down to pressure from equally corrupt and hypocritical asshole organizations) the hotels and bars have jacked up the prices of alcohol and beer once the current government allowed the ban to be curbed.
As the tax is now higher the bars and hotels have (or rather not have to, they can reduce it quite a bit) chosen to charge you premium money for drinking in their establishments. So why go to bars and pay Rs.200 to Rs.300 for a can or a 650 bottle of Heineken, Carslberg, Touborg or Budweiser when you can go to the Bevco and buy them for Rs.90 to Rs.100 or Rs.130 (for Heineken) and drink it at home in the comfort of wearing you lungi or shorts? That’s what I have been doing for a while.
I go once every two months with my cousin to a Chinese restaurant called Golden Dragon for beers and good food. But yesterday was the first time I have been to a bar in a while. The Blue Rock Resto Bar inside the Olive Downtown hotel is an awesome place that started in December of last year. This is an awesome bar where you can watch some football on their tvs and enjoy a few. But things are expensive.
We had 4 Heinekens which were expensive at Rs.380 but we got one of them free as it was Happy Hours at the time. I am disgusted at the prices but it was the stupid old men in power who made this happen. They steal from the people and can afford to go to expensive bars and enjoy while we want to save money. Anyways, the bar gives you free potato sticks in a bowl that they filled after we finished the first one. We ordered a grilled chicken and veggie platter as the appetizer. It was good but I must admit that I enjoyed the grilled veggies and potato wedges more than the chicken. It came with a small bowl of their bbq sauce or gravy which was awesome.
Later we ordered a fried pizza, which is more like a calzone and though it was not what we were expecting, it was tasty. We were there for almost 3.5 hours after which we were both sleepy and hence left. We also stopped for some donuts at the cafe beneath the bar and then went to our respective homes.
The man behind the most iconic alcoholic beverage of India passed away. Brigadier (retd.) Kapil Mohan, former Chairman and MD of Mohan Meakin Ltd and the man behind the rum Old Monk, passed away on January 6. He was 88 years old.
Old Monk Rum was the very first alcoholic drink that I ever drank, other than beer ofcourse. I was 19 and my much older cousin brother gave me two tall glasses of rum+cokes on ice (or was it rum+coke+lime) and I loved the taste. And ofcourse I got tipsy after the 1st glass. After that first taste, I started drinking rum on a weekly or bi weekly basis and Old Monk was my rum of choice.
The choice of most guys in my age group in Kerala (and it seems a lot other Indians agreed too) was Old Monk rum. Rum was cheaper than most other alcoholic beverages. So many evenings or afternoons spent in a bar drinking 3-4 rum+cokes on ice and deep fried beef. Oh those were the days when drinking out didn’t cost you an arm and a leg. Good memories! Cheers to the life of Brigadier (retd.) Kapil Mohan. Thank you, sir.
I ofcourse love the various frappes I can get from Cafe Coffee Day, Kawaha, Cocoa Tree and the like. I love the Peace Ice Tea from Galitos (always get them when I go there) and the recent one was the Peach & Passion Fruit Ice Tea from Double Roti. Too many shakes to mention here.
I was going through some old photos that I had uploaded in one of my Flickr accounts. My first Flickr account actually. I had uploaded pics from my Motorola Razor and then my Blackberry Curves and Blackberry Bold in it. I spent a good hour going through those pics and they brought a smile to my face. I’ve decided to showcase some of those pics here (though I may have posted them in my old Blogspot blog).
First up is an odd to an iconic beer – the Kingfisher. Granted that they are no longer my first choice when it comes to beer (or second or third or ….6th even) but they are still an icon. I spent many years drinking these beers until we started getting the Carlsbergs, Tuborgs, Millers and Heinekens. Nowadays I only drink Kingfisher if there are no other options left but still, I do value them. Here are two pics I took back in 2006.
Do you remember your first sip of alcohol? Of any kind? This is irrespective of whether you are a drinker now or if you don’t indulge at all.
When I was 15 I drank some whiskey by accident. I had just come back from school and I had changed my clothes as I was going out with an uncle to pick up by dad at the railway station. So I got ready and came down and just before we left, I rushed to the fridge and grabbed a bottle to drink some cold water, opened it and poured some down my throat – only to spit it out!
You see it wasn’t water but whiskey! I felt the burning sensation as it hit my tongue and throat and out came everything. The reason I took that bottle by mistake was we had this rather looking whiskey bottle which had a cork instead dredit
of a regular bottle cap. Once the bottle was empty of whiskey my mother had rinsed it out and washed it thoroughly and we used to keep it our fridge filled with water. It was my favourite bottle to drink water from as I rather liked the cork style bottles.
The culprit was my uncle who had come in my home barclays bridging loan
that morning with a brand new bottle of the same distillery. He meant to keep it for my dad but also had a little himself in the afternoon while he was visiting with my mom, his sister. The rest he meant to keep it for dad. And I hadn’t noticed that there were two same bottles in the fridge and picked the one that I saw and got a nasty surprise. And that’s how I had my first taste of alcohol!