Just in time for the sweltering summer, the city gets a new craft brewpub. This time, it isn’t a brewery from Bengaluru or one by a homegrown hipster. One of the biggest names in the business, Scottish craft brew brand BrewDog has launched its first brewpub in the country. After the launch of a few signature bottled brews in December 2019, the BrewDog pub is ready to open at Kamala Mills in Mumbai.
Apart from its beers, internationally, BrewDog has made waves with its chain of craft brew hotels and mini-hotels in Manchester and Ohio. The hotels aptly named The Doghouse and Kennels are kitted out with everything a beer fan would love, including in-room beer taps and shower beer fridges. Now in Mumbai, they’re all set to quench thirsty throats at their 4500+ sqft split-level taproom with more than 20 different craft beers on tap.
BrewDog launches its first outlet in Mumbai
The outlet echoes BrewDog’s classic design aesthetic, combining neon lights and graffiti with exposed brick walls. Sink yourself into the plush seats and pick from one of the many in-house beers or the rotating guest brews on tap. We eyed Toit’s Stray Apple, Bombay Duck’s Rice and Shine and Great State’s Belgian Blonde when we were there. Both the current design and menu have been acquired from the headquarters, but Abhijit Rao—the CEO of Ace-Aloha Group that owns the India franchise of BrewDog—confirms that both have been tweaked to suit local tastes. “At present, the beer is imported from the head brewery in Ellon, Scotland, but soon, we will begin brewing at our Nashik plant.” The Kamala Mills outlet is the 108th taproom of BrewDog in the world and the first of its kind in India.
Pouring now are a variety of brews in styles ranging from cool, refreshing lagers to hoppy IPAs as well as a dark and delicious stout. If you’re wondering what to pick from, start with a beer flight to sample a few and then zero in on your favourite. BrewDog bestsellers include the Punk IPA, the brew that started it all. A rich golden classic with hints of caramel and tropical fruit, the drink is best suited for those who enjoy zingy beers with a slightly bitter finish. If light and easy is more your vibe, try the Lost Lager, a palate-pleasing, crisp dry-hopped Pilsner with vibrant citrus and stone-fruit notes. Enjoy a more intense brew? Sip on the Bounty Hunter, a milk stout brewed with a blend of six malts with creamy notes of dark chocolate, coconut and caramel. You could also pick from offerings on the guest taps.
If you’re hoppy and you know it
Pair these with the pub grub menu put together by chef Gaurav Gidwani, the F&B head of BrewDog India. Gidwani hones his past experience building menus at bars such as Social and Bar Stock Exchange (BSE) and has put together a wide selection of dishes that would appeal to all your bar cravings. The mainstay BrewDog dishes such as the sweet and spicy chicken wings and the vegetarian batter-fried cauliflower wings make an appearance alongside local additions suited for Indian palates such as the slightly charred and crusty browned garlic chicken tikka, kung pao chicken and paneer and butter chicken naan bombs that are perfect to soak up the extra alcohol in your system. If you can make it to the mains, try the patriot burger loaded with a lamb patty, smoked bacon, cheddar and pickles, or even the grilled fish steak for those logic-defying moments when you’re trying to eat healthy at a brewpub.
2020 was a difficult year for practically everyone, but for craft brewers in Maharashtra, a gamer changer policy allowed microbreweries to sell beer growlers for home consumption and saved many beer businesses in the state from going under. While BrewDog is planning to launch growlers to cater to an at-home audience, they’re betting big on folks drinking beer outside their homes, after a year of staying in. The Kamala Mills location can seat 200, with an outdoor section and enough space to allow for adequate social distancing. Three outlets in Mumbai’s Bandra, Hyderabad and Gurugam are slated to open in the second half of the year, but that’s just a small fraction of the 30+ BrewDog outlets to launch within the next 24 months. It’s bold and it’s brewtiful.
BrewDog opens on 14 March. BrewDog Midtown Mumbai, Bombay Hub Building, Z-Wing, Unit 1&2, Kamala Mills, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel. Meal for two with alcohol: Rs2,000.