The beloved watering hole
Route 04, located in CP, Khan Market, and Cyber City, isn’t exactly a lounge or a restaurant. If anything, the closest word to define the kind of place it is, would be to call it a pub; however, I’d like to go a step further and call it a personal living room for everyone who is sitting there - a mashup of sorts. This is a place that you’d see brimming with regulars on weekdays, mostly with people in their formals grabbing drinks with colleagues or friends post work, or college goers who are looking for a change from the relatively cheap alcohol joints.
Although it has a decent food menu, Route 04 is majorly a drinking place with happy hours lasting from 4pm to 10pm (50% off on all drinks) on an already decently priced beverage list. The ambience here is very laid back (refer to the living room analogy) and the music has never disappointed me - they generally lean toward rock (with popular numbers thrown in frequently). The Khan and CP outlets are spread over two floors - the lower floors are no-smoking, no-hookah zones (isn’t all of Delhi?), are well lit, and have more of a let’s-sit-comfortably-but-with-decorum feel to them - ideal if you are here for a meal (really? why are you here for a meal? go to Big Chill if you’re in Khan, Gulati’s if you’re in CP or Chilli’s if you’re in Cyber City) or if you are part of a group of people who don’t know each other too well yet; the upper floors are where it all goes crazy - the lighting is just right, the seating arrangement is very casual, hookah is served, smoking is allowed, the music is louder, the people get crazier, and the conversations are louder due to overcompensation of buzzing minds.
As is very apparent, this places revolves around the new-age drinking-isn’t-only-for-the-weekend-culture, so let’s move on to the drinks menu. Do not expect to be served exotic drinks here, however you will not be disappointed either, because they serve more than just the basic staples. They have imported draught beer, which isn’t very common in Delhi, and they serve Stella, which again, isn’t very common. Their range of scotch, bourbons, and vodka covers the paltry college goer and the newly promoted 9-to-5er, and well - even good rum is always cheap. For those looking to get their crazy on - they always have jagerbombs - always, and have the regular B52, tequila, Kamikaze kind of shooters. The servers are kind enough to remind you about the end of happy hours at 9:55pm so it’s a good idea to stack up for supplies till 1am, as any regular would tell you.
Their food menu is extensive, however finger food is the most popular as it goes best in this kind of setting (don’t go here just for a meal, if you didn’t get that hint already.) The Rancher’s nachos are excellent and they don’t skimp on the cheese or veggies/chicken. This is also one of the very few places where the Cajun fried mozzarella cheese sticks are crisp on the outside, molten to stretchable perfection on the inside, and don’t leave an after-taste of bad oil. The loaded potato bases are a favorite with the vegetarians. You are advised to stay away from the chicken skewers, and also warned that they have no idea how to make a tenderloin steak. The pastas are average and the tex-mex page is worth a shot.
All in all, this is a decent place to head to if you feel like you’ve had a long day. There are ample choices for teetotalers, dipsomaniacs, gluttons, as well as your average Joe. It would be best to book ahead on weekends, otherwise there is generally a 15-20 minute wait. Snacks plus a couple of drinks will set you back 1k. 4k gets you plastered. Don’t drink and drive.