Are you gonna stay the night? That’s not what the waiters asked us when we entered Tap Sports Bar, a day after it launched on the bustling Link Road at Andheri. That was a question singer Hayley Williams was asking as the song blasted on the powerful speakers of the bar. Well, that completely depends on how you treat us, we thought to ourselves.
Veracruz Cottage Cheese are conversation starters
First impressions: We were impressed — not only by the spacious and well-lit interiors, but also by the fact that even though the music was blasting, we could hear each other speak across the table without raising our voices. Since it’s primarily a sports bar, the outer area had a smattering of festoons belonging to different football teams.
Paprika Prawns Tonga
Framed photographs and quotes of famous sportspersons adorn the wall behind the reception, while a huge screen dominated the A/C section, with smaller televisions hung from the ceiling. The wooden floors and walls, wooden carvings on the ceiling, pillars embedded with stones, paintings of Mexican mafia on the walls and the huge screen displaying a football match — all came together in a synchronised harmony and we settled down to having a good time.
Stone pillars, carved wooden ceiling and Mexican mafia paintings — it all comes together at Tap Sports Bar. Pics/Prashant Waydande
We decided to try the mocktails first and ordered the Spicy Guava (Rs 209) and Orange Flute (Rs 209). While the former lived up to its name (we were smacking our lips after a sip), the latter was a refreshing concoction of orange chunks, lime chunks, vanilla syrup and soda. And then the starters arrived. We were glad we picked up the Poblano Chilli Parcel (R280) first, a deep-fried parcel of veggies, poblano chilly and corn crumbs. A mouthful of flavours burst onto our tongue, as the veggies and the chilly collided. Next up, we tried the Crackling Cheese Cakes (R280), made with jalapeno, cottage and parmesan cheese. The name suggested some crackle, but what we got was soft cottage cheese that melted in our mouths. After the earlier dish, this seemed a little bland but the jalapenos saved the day. The Polenta Cheese Corn Lupinaro (Rs 359) that followed tasted similar to the cheese cakes, and we longed to try something to spice up things further.
Wish granted. The Paprika Prawns Tonga (Rs 459) arrived on our table and were gone within a few seconds as we relished the juicy morsels wrapped in chicken strips and stuffed with chopped prawns. The spice quotient went up a notch higher with the Adobo Mexican Wingleta (R359) and Poblano Grilled Fish (R359). We let go off the fork to taste the chicken wings the way it should be done. Spiced with brassa sauce, they were lip-smackingly good. But the grilled fish was the clear winner. The fish squares marinated in poblano chilly were soft, juicy, spicy and bursting with flavour.
The appetisers had played their part well, and even though we were quite full, we didn’t want to go without tasting the mains — the menu showed us options in Mexican, Italian, Pizzas, Chinese and even Indian. We decided to order a pizza and settled for the Grilled Chicken, Onion, Capsicum, Brocolli and Extra Cheese (R415). The waiter suggested we try the waffer crust, which he informed us, was thinner than the thin crust. But although we couldn’t find fault with the flavours of the pizza, we discovered that we prefer our pizzas on a thicker base. We swear we were quite full when the Veracruz Cottage Cheese (R275) arrived on our table, but one bite of the sinfully soft cottage cheese grilled with spicy cheese sauce and we were fans. And that was also the precise moment that we thought of an answer to the question asked earlier — we wished we could stay the night.
We cannot rate the experience as it was a preview.
Tap Sports Bar
Food: Finger-licking good
Price: Rs 1,500 for two
At: Royal Plaza, Next to Citi Mall, New Link Road, Andheri West