There are plenty of bars in Delhi that feature live music: from electronica DJs to guitar-strumming indie crooners, classic rock cover bands to ladies singing the blues. However, until recently, you’d have been hard-pressed to find a single place that invested in decent acoustics, where patrons didn’t act like the real people jamming in front of them were supposed to melt into the background. Now, we have the Piano Man Jazz Club, a little speakeasy-style place in Safdarjung Enclave with low lighting, warm wood-and-brick interiors, and a cramped but classy old-fashioned bar. Jazz Club doesn’t take its name lightly: its lineup, which is updated regularly on Facebook, features the city’s best jazz and blues acts, plus screenings of concerts and films of the genre’s greats, such as Louis Armstrong, Bill Evans. (You’ll also find their names carved reverently into bricks in the wall.) When an act begins, the owner requests guests to be quiet, and he’s not shy about approaching the microphone with a reminder if that request is ignored.
The Piano Man Jazz Club’s cocktails include Prohibition classics – they do the trick, but could use a little tempering of overly sweet or sour flavours. The menu is focused on not-so-basic bar snacks: we’re fans of the slightly spicy, street food-influenced chickpea and potato tacos, and the juicy lamb sliders, topped with caramelized onions and tomato aioli. The service is slow, but only because the bar seems to be completely packed, particularly on weekends – reservations are strongly recommended. Sit close to the band on the ground floor, or watch from the balcony instead, near the elegant Deco trumpet chandelier (and the busy bar): either way, the focus is the music. To quote the bar’s namesake song: we’re all in the mood for a melody, and you’ve got us feeling alright.
Approx Rs. 2000 for two including alcohol.
B-6-7/22, Safdarjung Enclave Market. Tel: 011 33106260
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