in Review

The NYE night sham

This review of Beer County was written for Zomato. I published the same and later took it off the site. Am not sure what triggered that action but deep down I have a feeling what I have written might not be at the best business interest of this place if all Zomato users go through it.

At the same time, I don’t want to create a sense of misconception that just because I took this review off Zomato, I don’t have any say in how awful ‘Beer County’ is. For people eager enough to do their quality research before visiting a new restaurant, they might find this mighty helpful!

My rating: 2 / 5

Beer County Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

We were late in planning for the NYE night – with most of the happening places in the city already sold out, we thought to give ‘Beer County’ a chance. The night before I called them up to know if they have any special package for NYE and was glad to know they did not – added to it, they mentioned they were going to have live music. We were glad our gamble worked out.

After closing down office work early on the 31st, we headed for ‘Beer County’ where we had booking for 9pm. Three of us reached there at 9.10pm. This first sign at the place set the alarm off – it was almost empty with 6-7 customers sitting in a corner table, chatting among themselves. Now imagine a place with ‘Beer’ in its name to be that empty at 9.10pm on a 31st December night around the busy-partying centre of the busy-partying city – and you will know what I mean!

On the phone call the previous night I was told the live music shall start at 8.30pm – there was no live music around. When asked, I was told the person responsible for the music was on his way. Good enough.

As always, we did some extensive homework before coming to this place for the first time. And my to-try foodlist contained, based on Zomato reviews –

Honey glazed chicken
Cottage cheese pizza
Chicken wings
Chips and dips
Beer battered prawns
Three cheese mushroom

And the to-try brew list contained –
Fuller’s Honey Dew
Fuller’s London

There was a menu special for the occasion – 4-5 dishes each in Starters and Mains – plain old Chilli Chickens and Crispy Corns in Starters and Biryanis in the Mains. Most of the drinks were ‘not available’ – even on a 31st December night.

If I combine the above two lists, there was ONLY ONE item available – Viru. Guess the management team must have forgot that when they are playing a game, they should play for the viewers and not for their own sake.

We still ignored – the excitement of trying out newer brews were quite palpable. And with ‘Stairway to heaven’ playing in the background and with good company with you, who could have complained!

The threshold was soon met, thanks to the excellent ‘live music’ which started soon after. There came this person, armed with a Sony Vaio (with Karaoke playing on an amp through it) and an amplifier, and an electric guitar in hand. With no smile on the face and no acknowledgement or interest to interact with the ‘audience’, he sat down in the corner, killed the Led Zeppelin tracks playing in the background and started strumming the electric guitar with the seriousness of a professional player playing on his ninety-ninth funeral gathering. I give you the list of songs he played, in order, in the next quarter of an hour (I took notes – I already started preparing for this post!) –

Chhoti si asha
Dil me ho tum
Saathiya tune kya kiya
Gulabi aankhen
Jeena isi ka naam hain
Kuchh nah kaho

With all due respect to these songs and the artist, I won’t go into details like the art of rendition or execution of a performance art – all in the name of soulful ‘live music’ (read: loud Karaoke)!

What stunned me was the level we, the customers, had been taken for granted by the management of the place. They duped us from the very word go – say one part of the night and they ruined it for us – ambience (there was no ambience, except the Led Zeppelin touch), food (don’t force me to write more about it – they don’t even have their own kitchen!), drinks (the bests were on rest), live music (scam), service (they charged SCH 5%, STX 5.8% and VAT 14.5% above the bill amount – asked the guy serving us to get me the Manager and he never returned to face me).

From the minute the ‘live music’ started, we took straight 15 minutes to get the hell out of the place.

We went to some other place after that and had some good food. But I still have few regrets from that night –

  • Not doing enough homework on this place before taking a call to go there to spend our 31st night
  • I actually recommended this place to 2-3 of my friends after reading the Zomato reviews even before visiting there myself

These mistakes – not again. This place – never again. We visited the place with huge expectations – only to be let down, and how!

I just wish their Jubilee Hills branch is better. I liked Viru.

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