New Launch: Social, Hauz Khas Village

Socialize, Social-network, Social-media; the word ‘social’ seems to be taking over our lives. And now, Riyaaz Amlani, owner Impresario (of the Mocha and Smoke house Deli fame) brings to us how he envisions a physical form for the word, in the form of an all day cafe and bar called SOCIAL.

Hauz Khas Social,

“You remove form from design and all you are left with is function.” Riyaaz explains about the interior decor or rather lack off in the space. “Coffee shops and cafes have been projected as your “Third Place”, a place away from home and your work/college. With Social, for the very first time in restaurant history we have introduced the Second Place concept, a place where you can both work and play,” he continues. 

Hauz Khas Social,

Spread over 8,500 square feet with a stunning view of both the Hauz Khas monument and lake, the decor of Social has been left to a bare minimum, with exposed brick walls and tiled flooring, made to resemble an old warehouse or New York loft, as was my first impression when I entered. Rugged yet chic, everything found in Social is recycled or up-cycled. The unfinished bare walls and naked bulbs dangling from the ceiling are juxtaposed against the plush leather sofas. Skeletal table clamp lights add strong lines to the large communal tables, while jute blinds cover the large windows. Everything here has been found and not bought, adding to the character of the space. Social has everything an office has; a boardroom, wall-space, conference facilities, wall-to-wall uber high-speed WiFi and built-in social interaction, along with an app for the same. The app lets you order and review food, check out the restaurant’s playlist and even check in on what the other guests in the space are up to, to allow room for collaboration and interaction between tables. Once the day ends, the work space at Social shifts gears to become a high energy bar.

Hauz Khas, Social,  Hauz Khas, Social,

Then of course, there is the food. The menu combines ingredients and cultures from across the world with a street food experience sitting in a cafe. So your fish of your Fish and chips is mini-bites, served in a mug while your Wow Bao’s, a Turkish street dish, plated to look like a burger. That element of quirkiness is not to be missed while there are not enough words to describe how tasty the food was, but that is not surprising, as experience has shown me Mr. Amlani loves his food and usually gets it right. The drinks menu is like something out of a science fiction laboratory. The Deconstructed Moscow Mule, for instance is served in a mule mug, with a beaker tied up in muslin cloth with smoked Vodka and a pipette with bitters. While the Long Island Iced Tea was actually long, served in somewhat of a long glass tube. The cocktails are definitely going to be a draw for Social.
All in all, I am definitely expecting Social to attract a young and creative crowd. Especially those who find sitting in a conventional office to cumbersome. But, will it be a long-lasting solution to keep this easily bored Generation Z excited and fill the gap left by regular coffee shops, that is yet to be seen!

Address: 9A &12, Hauz Khas Village, New Delhi
Number: 7838652814

De-clutter your life, space and mind

The other day I came across an episode of Keeping up with the Kardashian’s (my guilty pleasure at times) where Kourtney Kardashian is upset (again!) because Scott Disick, who otherwise is always at home not partying, being a great dad goes off once a week to party in LA and is too hung-over the next day. Now I don’t know or really care about the intricacies of their relationship and trust me I am not supporting him or any of them, personally I think they are all seriously disconnected from reality, but it made me wonder if we have become just too intolerant as a race, unnecessarily complicating life, expecting too much while giving nothing in return and easily generalizing people.This then reminded me of another conversation I had with a college friend, where by he was telling me about all the couples who had gotten married around the time I moved to Mumbai and are now divorced. While divorce is a common occurrence in the West, in India it is still looked down upon and often considered the absolute last measure so it was very surprising to hear the numbers and even more surprising the reasons; almost every girl had accused the guy of being an alcoholic or domestic abuse. As for the guys the really cool boy friends turned into these idiotic MCP husbands.

Honestly, I don’t think most people even know the actual implications of terms like alcoholic or domestic abuse or how traumatic it is for people who actually face this in life. For instance,if a person had a big social life with a huge friend circle before you came into his life and enjoyed it, it is a part of their personality and if he/she is responsible, working hard and only drinking socially 2-3 times a week, it makes them social and outgoing not an alcoholic.If however they need to have a drink everyday and can’t stop at just a couple of drinks each time they sit to drink, don’t have any control over desire for alcohol, have a complete personality change from a docile person to a violent abusive one, then yes they are an alcoholic and you need to be worried. Just because you don’t drink or like to go out it is kind of unfair to call another person an alcoholic even if they are not and expect the other person to completely change their ways, you need to come up with a compromise. As for domestic abuse, I completely condone anyone raising their hand on another person; talk it out, scream if you are that angry or avoid the person but no need to get violent. Then once and the only time in my life (barring battles with my brother) I actually slapped someone.

I was living with this girl who had been making life hell for me but I had been ignoring it; she would not let me have people over(which I respected and had no one but my BF who she knew about come over), send me stupid messages all day even when I was at work and she knew it annoyed me but I avoided it, Charge me extra and make me pay for things I never used, lock the door when she knew I had stepped out, wasn’t helpful but mostly never discussed her issues even when I asked her. I was being patient for over 6 months till one day she locked me out again and this time even though I rang the door bell for over 40 mins she did not open the door. So that left me standing outside middle of the night, alone, banging on the door, calling her up till ultimately the whole building woke up started screaming at me for creating a ruckus and she had to open the door. That was when I actually slapped another person and even though I never hope to raise my hand on another living soul I don’t think I was unjustified.Firstly, she had no right to lock me out since I also paid to live there and it is unsafe for a girl to be standing out in the street middle of the night, Secondly it wasn’t like she had passed out and could not hear the doorbell she was just being vindictive. So you might call this domestic violence, but given the circumstance, was I really the only one at fault for raising my hand? I mean I had been avoiding her nagging and been trying my best to accommodate her for months but my patience had worn out.

All of the above examples to me seem like they are due to unrealistic expectations people have, looking for validation from outside rather than inside. For instance, if you are not social and feel that is something you don’t enjoy or are not OK with a social partner it is better to go for someone who fits the profile of what you like, rather than try to change someone completely, it wont happen at least not permanently. It is the easiest thing in the world to blame another person or their shortcomings but we are far from perfect and that is something we need to remember. Somewhere I think we really need to go back to the basics, uncomplicated life and start from scratch. I think the current monetary situation in the world is taking us right there-to the start! We don’t need things in quantity as much as good quality. It is fashionable to have your own style and vintage is in. I am not saying we need to be door-mats, but somewhere we need to completely de-clutter our minds, take a deep breath and learn to accept people for as they are and not what we want them to be. That is the only way we will feel at peace with ourselves.