Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier

The city — sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Ivy League at Mahalaxmi
The Asian Racing Conference (ARC) ends today but there is no time to wipe the brow or take a breather for Royal Western India Turf Club (RWITC) honchos. The Ivy League Day will be held tomorrow, and after that, of course, comes the biggie, the Indian Derby run traditionally held on the first Sunday of every February.

A cultural evening at the Mahalaxmi race course was part of the Asian Racing Conference (ARC) in Mumbai. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
A cultural evening at the Mahalaxmi race course was part of the Asian Racing Conference (ARC) in Mumbai. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar

The Ivy League Day makes its debut at the racecourse tomorrow. On Ivy League Day on Saturday afternoon, each of the races will be named after an Ivy League University. So, you would have the Columbia Race, the Cornell Race, Brown Race, Harvard Race, Yale Race, U Pen and Dartmouth. The RWITC reached out to the universities through local alumni.

The RWITC is looking at alumni in Mumbai, who will be representing their Universities on this day. Vivek Jain, head of media and marketing, RWITC says, “The alumni represent the cream of society and are our target group. We are counting on a large attendance to showcase the sport.” Like it or diss it, there is no doubt that the apex club is forging new paths and on a breakthrough mission this season at the race course.

When Atwood wowed Dilliwallahs
Celebrated Canadian author, Margaret Atwood was at Delhi’s India Habitat Centre on Wednesday with Patrick French where she spoke about her latest book, The Heart Goes Last (published by Bloomsbury).

Margaret Atwood chats with Patrick French
Margaret Atwood chats with Patrick French

Our mole in the crowd tells us that fans had begun queuing up well before 6.30 pm when the doors were finally opened. To cater to the huge numbers who couldn’t manage a seat inside, the organisers set up screens in the lawns to ensure they didn’t miss out.

Inside, the lucky fans were treated to gems by Atwood, including, “Genres as we have them now are useful for bookstores to know which shelf to put the book on, but not for readers,” and “In the ’60s and ’70s, it was a compliment to tell a woman that she wrote like a man, the reverse was an insult.”

Handsome, ain't I?

Pic/Satej ShindePic/Satej Shinde

At a tourism event held at a suburban five star last evening, actor Siddharth Malhotra seemed to approve of a publicity campaign image featuring him sipping a drink in a wooden cask bath with a lady.

Chandigarh after Corbusier
We love it when curators bring on their wordsmith skills, and Shanay Jhaveri is on that list. Jhaveri will launch Chandigarh is in India — a book he has edited and also contributed a scholarly essay to — early next month.

Shanay Jhaveri. Pic/Ribayah Memon
Shanay Jhaveri. Pic/Ribayah Memon

The book tells the story of how Chandigarh has been an enduring source of inspiration for Indian and Western artists, and includes over 250 illustrations and photographs. Why Chandigarh, we ask?

“I have been thinking about Chandigarh beyond Corbusier, to see how it has adapted and evolved. The book looks at modernism across art and architecture,” he says. This publication follows Jhaveri’s previous book Outsider Films on India 1950/1990, which, he tells us, had inspired his thoughts on Chandigarh. A worthwhile chain reaction, that’s for sure.

Another cricket bash
As if there wasn’t enough cricket in our lives already, here’s another development. The Pakistan Super League pegged as the largest sporting event in Pakistan will begin on February 4 at the Dubai Cricket Stadium.

Ali Zafar. Pic/Shadab Khan
Ali Zafar. Pic/Shadab Khan

Jamaican pop king Sean Paul will perform a song composed and sung by Pakistani musician Ali Zafar at the opening ceremony. The song, Ab Khel Ke Dikha, is meant to be a declaration of the fact that the players will not back down from any challenge.

Zafar, who was picked as the voice of nation for the country’s premiere T20 league, has performed at 50 concerts in a span of 60 days all over Pakistan.

A beery good Kaapi, anyone?
Lovers of craft beer have another reason to cheer. Starting today, a new flavour will be doing the rounds at eight popular city bars. It’s called the Kaapi Stout, featuring South Indian single estate coffee along with roasted barley.

What’s more, it will be served on nitrogen, unlike other beers, which are served on carbon dioxide, considering the gas gives the brew a creamier head. Launched to celebrate Gateway Brewing Company’s second anniversary, the flavour is a brainchild of the co-founders, Rahul Mehra, Navin Mittal and Krishna Naik.

Keen to get a kaapi kick tonight? Then, head to Woodside Inn at Andheri. From tomorrow, you can either get your fix at the Colaba outpost or at The Bombay Canteen, 145, Social (Palladium), Irish House (Bandra), The Good Wife and British Brewing Company (Lower Parel). For those looking for something fancy, try the brew with dark chocolate squares paired by Kala Ghoda Cafe.

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