Thursday, January 26, 2017


Experiencing the local way of hanging out anywhere in the world is not only the best way to enjoy but it’s also a cultural glimpse into the drinking and social scene of any culture.
‘Lime’ is not just a garnish to your rum and cola here, but refers to an spur-of-the-moment ‘chilling out’ session. The country’s kinship for ‘liming’, is basically hanging with friends, food, music and rum or beer. The expression comes from the notion of having nothing to do except squeeze limes.
Locals love to invite friends to chill out with where each person brings their preferred rum and just chill or lime. For locals, the after-work, Friday-night lime is one of the most standard aims to visit a rum shop. Whether you and your friends ease on one of Tobago’s white sandy beaches or enjoy with food and drinks in Port of Spain in Trinidad you are liming true local style.

Melbourne is tantamount with coffee. Every district is inevitably oozing with cafes. Behind uncluttered décor and beneath industrial lighting that looks like it’s been enlightened straight from the good old 1950’s apron-clad baristas tier their trade and serve up magic, pour-overs and cold brews.For every cafe or hole-in-the-wall coffee shop hidden down an alley there is a que of eager customers waiting for their single-origin, Ethiopian, fittingly obtained caffeine fix. The roots are as humble as anywhere else, and the demand for well-made coffee from small, free cafes is growing day by day and is a world of delight, as cafes source new beans from glamorous locations and experiment with fresh and unusual coffee-based beverages.

A typical American backyard barbecue goes something like this: grill meat, eat meat, and repeat and get into a food coma. The menu is usually classic and unfussy including Hamburgers, hot dogs and corn on the cob. There are usually two tables one for dining and one for food and drinks and everyone serve themselves and the food is placed where the action is. The home bar is replete with glasses, bottle openers, napkins and of course the drinks.
Traditional Izakaya is a Japanese tavern that offers food that savours good with Japanese beer ‘Asahi’ being most popular. Sample this; delicious petite plates of food, relaxing from a sombre day at work, and fun mingling with friends!  Finding an Izakaya is easy in Tokyo and can be everything from a small little dive that’s dim and smoky with a limited bar seats, to an enormous bar with plenty of seating. They open their doors early evening, outfitting mainly to office goers who head straight to an Izakaya post work for a few drinks, pre-dinner snacks, and a casual relaxing time with friends. Hence you would find most guests still wearing business suits. They love their yakitori and gyoza.  Best Izakaya bars are underneath the railroad tracks, near Shinjuku, and within Ameya-Yokocho market.
Hanging out with celebrity chef Ferran Adria at a tapas bar in Barcelona
Neither quite an appetizer not a full meal, the tapa is all about socializing whether that encompasses ordering a procession of little dishes to share over refreshing chilled wine or cider and an extended conversation or maybe just on a pub crawl. The whole idea of tapas is envisioned to lubricate the helms for an evening of chatter, sparkle and amity with friends. The best tapas are often served standing in a crowded and smoky bar. The server helps find a small table or a space on the bar top where one places the food. One is likely to be standing in a teeming space all night, but this is chunk of the fun. Interestingly the bar staff work out the bill by counting the toothpicks on the plate!

my story first published in HT City