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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mumbai International Beer Festival 2012

So the Mumbai International Beer Fest 2012 got over this weekend ( 27th Oct, Saturday). We were so excited about the event that we had been waiting for it ever since we heard its coming to Mumbai.

The event was held at D'Monte Park Recreation Centre in Bandra and was hosted by the Gymkhana Club (I think!). The event was scheduled to begin at 5:30 and go on till 11pm. We took the group booking option, where we signed up for a group of 5 and for a tasting of ALL the international beers that were going to be specially showcased in the event - 13 in all. Of course there were the other regular beer names too, but these 13 were the special ones that were the attraction of the fest.

As we were looking forward to an evening of pure beer-ing and fun, we reached the venue by 05:30pm, the time by when the beer was actually supposed to be available (the original start time was 5pm). But once we reached there, it was a sheer disappointment. Forget drinking the beer, the organisers hadn't even got the beer at the venue! There were tables and chairs all lying empty and people standing at the reception counter where entry bands were being given, asking when they could finally start drinking! The food stalls were ready, but the reason why people had come over wasn't there. And worst of all, the beer didn't even reach the venue before 06:30pm! It was a sheer waste of time and mood as most people, rightfully, began cribbing and getting their moods spoiled. Waiting for an hour when the fest should already have started is quite a dumb thing to do actually!

The food stalls were already open, and we also had a platter as part of our booking. So, with nothing else to do, we decided to eat a few bits till we waited for the beer to arrive. The platter came with some shawarma rolls (didn't like), some hummus and pita bread (liked) and I think there was something else as part of the platter, but I don't remember now.

Finally, around 06:30 pm, the beer arrived at the venue. BUT, they weren't chilled! Now, you can imagine for yourself how lame that sounds. I'm really disgusted at the way Bombay Gymkhana handled the entire event....really really sad!

So we had to wait another half an hour before we finally got the beer. So, a beer fest that's supposed to start at 5, starts at 5:30, but when people come in, the beer isn't there, and they have to wait for an hour again before the beer reaches the venue around 6:30, and then again wait half an hour more till 7pm coz the beer wasn't chilled! Great!

Once the beer was finally chilled, the counters were open. But, yet again, here's an example of how to completely badly manage an event with such promise. The counters were extremely short-staffed and poorly managed, resulting in crowds and a large number of people having to wait and wait and wait. Honestly, the only thing that kept the tempers in check was that we were with a group of fun friends and the crowd was good, the music (live performance) was okay in bits and pieces, but nothing to look forward to, the the DJ, as and when he took over, was horrendous (more like a trying-to-be kaam-chalaau DJ!).

So let's check out a few of the beer I tried out (I tried out all 13) and really really loved out of the entire lot:

 This was the clear favourite of the entire group #1

 Favourite #2 of the entire group but my #1 beer...loved it!

I tried out sushi at the stalls and they were really sad, didn't want to eat at all as they were so boring, not bad or distasteful (as some people find it) but plain boring. I also tried out ribs and they were to die for!!!!

- Debolina Raja Gupta

And like I always believe in and say:
"Heal the world we live in
Save it for our children" - MJ

Debolina Raja Gupta