Barometer is an upscale, fine-dine resto-bar, recently opened in the city of Pune. Pune is regarded as the Oxford of the East but it has grown in leaps and bounds, to become one of the leading IT hubs of India. This has given rise to sudden increase in the ‘IT population’ of the city which also brought in changes in lifestyle as well as eating and drinking habits. To cater to the growing needs of this new lifestyle, a lot of hep bars, breweries, pubs and resto-bars have come up in Pune which offer a wide range of drinks and delectable food for all taste buds. Barometer is one such shiny place that has emerged in the suburb of Kothrud in Pune and which caters to people of all age groups, and adding a sparkle to special celebrations like birthdays, anniversaries or even romantic dates and kitty parties.
Ever since Barometer opened in Pune, dining in Kothrud has never been the same. In fact, Barometer is the finest place to drink and dine in Kothrud, serving draught beers to hard liquor and a variety of multi-cuisine dishes from their extensive menu. Started by a team of creative and enthusiastic professionals from an events organization and creative company, Barometer has scaled new heights in terms of popularity in a very short span.
I have been to Barometer many times and I have come back, as they say “delighted”. This restobar is located a few metres away from the CityPride Kothrud multiplex. As soon as you step on to the premises of Barometer, you will see a flowchart of beer-making painted on the floor on your left. Climb a few steps and you come to the hostess desk where you will also see an actual antique barometer by the door, accompanied with a little bit of history written about the instrument. Register your name on the wait list because hardly an evening goes by where you will not need to wait, unless you arrive and occupy a table around 7:30pm. If you come at your usual dinner time i.e. around 9pm then it is quite possible that you may have to wait for some time which may vary from minimum 45 minutes to 1.5 hours. But even this long waiting time is made comfortable by the Barometer team by serving hot basic pizza slices, free of cost. This is a superb way of customer retention and I absolutely appreciate this kind gesture of Barometer towards its customers who are patient enough to wait, just to have an awesome dining experience. This warm attitude of keeping the customer happy, has become a rarity in today’s mad competition between restobars everywhere. When I experienced this “free pizza while waiting” phenomenon, I was blown away this gesture and so were the 20-odd people waiting in the open on a cold December evening.
After waiting for about 45 minutes, we finally got a table. Here, I must mention that you may also be asked to sit on the high chairs at the bar and start with drinks and bar bites by the time you get a table. This is also a good way to keep the customer calm and their stomachs happy till they get a proper table.
The interiors are a good play of black and shades of gray while wooden tables and chairs display a good contrast in the entire scenario. The upper part of the wall on your right, as you enter the dining area, is adorned with tools and instruments used in a typical chef’s kitchen. Another thing that catches your eye is the huge showcase of liquor at the bar. And you will spend a lot of time admiring the bottles and many other interesting items kept in the huge showcase, especially if you are sitting on a high chair at the bar. Once you are seated by the hostess, a smiling and polite server greets you and places small bottles of water which is included at no extra cost in your dining experience. Apart from the clean and shiny crockery and cutlery placed on the table, another interesting item to note are the tiny brass plates with respective table numbers engraved on them in Devnagari script. Since most of the management team are Maharashtrians and from Pune, this is one striking element that depicts the Marathi touch to the ambiance.
Speaking about the menu, this one is a foodie’s delight indeed. Multi-cuisine menu ‘traveling’ across the continents starting from our very own India to Europe, America, Japan, Pan-Asian and back, it has something for every taste bud. They have a separate breakfast menu which is equally tempting and has some uncommon items like Prawns Poha and Keto-diet Bullet Proof Coffee. There is a nice selection of omlettes and sandwiches as well. But note that breakfast is served everyday only between 7:30am to 11:00 am (yes, they do start operations early at 7:30am). For me personally, the filter coffee served here is indeed at par with the best ones served in Pune. Coming to the main lunch / dinner menu, I have tasted a lot of items from this huge selection and I have never been disappointed. Taste is a subjective matter, so it is hard to appreciate or negate food items which others may or may not find to their taste. But overall, I will say that eating and drinking here will leave you satisfied. Kheema Pav is one of their must-haves and so are their pizzas. But one thing I must mention here and is NOT to be missed is their signature original dessert called Floating Island. I shall not reveal anymore than this, it is better that you find out more about this magnificent piece of sweetness, by yourself. Service is polite, prompt and smiling servers as well as managers will tend to your needs efficiently. One more remarkable feature about Barometer, is the continuous screening of Charlie Chaplin classics on one wall which turns out to be far more entertaining than the usual broadcast on the television sets.
One of the downsides of Barometer is definitely the long waiting times especially towards the weekend. Secondly, I personally found the quantity of starters to be a tad less that doesn’t justify the price. Main course items are indeed VFM and a delight in all aspects. I also realized that there is a lot more variety for non-vegetarians, especially when it comes to breakfast menu. Some people might also find the entire seating arrangement a bit claustrophobic as tables are placed quite close to one another. Again, I personally feel that they should cut down on the use of mandatory bottled water for their customers. A good RO filter is a standard now in almost all eateries and it would also save the environment from all the plastic waste generated with the use of bottled water.
However, Barometer is a fresh face in the restaurant scene in Pune. And even more so, especially in the suburb of Erandwane/Kothrud. Long waiting times for most of the days of the week is a sure sign of success, this place has achieved in such a short span of time. But moreover, repeat customers thronging to the place, ensures that Barometer is here to stay and grow. So indulge yourself in this gastronomical paradise with some interesting cocktails, delectable food and Charlie Chaplin moments. This is one place where you won’t feel any pressure.