Friday, September 14, 2007

'new' delhi nightlife leaves a hole in your pocket

For awhile I was pretty excited about all the new bars, clubs and restaurants opening up around town. But now I've decided that it's all a conspiracy to make me feel underpaid and tight-fisted. As far as I can tell, all the new joints have formed a tacit agreement to boost the going rate for beer at "posh" bars from Rs.150-200 for a large bottle of domestic to Rs.150-200 for the 330 ml bottle that in Delhi is erroneously identified as a pint. (Folks, a pint is about 475 milliliters--40% larger than the small beer bottle).

What is behind this disturbing trend? I've always believed that Delhi bar owners operate under the mistaken impression that well-heeled patrons cause less trouble than regular folks. But the only bar squabbles I've witnessed or heard about have been in the upscale joints, and the most famous such incident (the murder of Jessica Lal) occurred at a chic-chic bar and was allegedly perpetrated by one of the city's rich and powerful.

At the same time, it appears to me that the steady stream of business at the previous generation of reasonably priced nightspots--Buzz, Flames and (formerly) Turquoise Cottage, to name a few that are full of patrons seven days a week--must be more lucrative than posh places that are half-empty many nights and never have many patrons until the end of the night.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, with real estate prices (rental and ownership) going through the roof and the bribes that bar owners would be giving to local authorities for licenses etc and worker attrition/rising salaries, and the cost of power backups to keep the facility cool, I think it somewhat explains why beer costs 40% more in new establishments. I am not a economist but I read something called a "personal inflation rate". while common rate is 5%, your personal rate could be 20% just because of your liking for a cold one :-)