It was the last couple of weeks, when I met different people and a couple of them asked me the question Why don’t you come over for the group meets; It would be good to have you over one of these days
That set me to thinking about how many groups are there in Bombay and how are they different, why are they different and are they in for commercial reasons? So let’s begin in no particular order,
Mumbai Gourmet Club The latest entrant from Delhi, which has a great fan following on FaceBook, recently had their first evening at Guppy Popup by Olive. It had food lovers and stalwarts shelling out approximately Rs. 3000/- to meet, drink, eat and make merry. Was held on a Sunday 🙁
MFL Card A young Harsh Jhaveri who loves vegetarian food and eats out 5 days a week, is on the list of every Agency to be called for food trials, launched the MFL Card a few months ago, which also offers discounts, but also focuses on exclusive events on Sunday afternoons over board games, food and drinks. Quite interesting, but the group gathering is quite young and the games are new.
Bombay Bar Hoppers Another young man Bhavin Shah launched this some months ago, where a day is decided in advance and 2 or more bar hopping is organised in one locality, with of course good deals being offered by the pubs/bars. Quite interesting, but age intervenes, cannot stand the pub noise or drink too much.
Cocktail Club of Bombay Hipcask by Aneesh the wine app which pivoted to alcohol and food pairings and other events, runs this once a month, where for a pre fixed amount you can taste a limited number of mixed cocktails, meet similar interest people. Quite posh, can’t pronounce half the names and hold cocktails.
Pet Pujaris A common platform run by Kumar where two afternoons/evening are organised and called Fatka and Kadka which signifies the expensive and economical locations. Interesting and would probably attend when calendars coincide.
FinelyChopped Walks Started by Kalyan which covers different stories and food – Fort, Bengali etc. Normally priced at Rs 2500/- has 8-12 people. Though he also holds private walks for specific visitors. Not really my cup of walk 😉
There are others which are the ‘Social Media Influencers’ who are called by PR or SM agencies and mostly travel in groups. There may be others also, more informal of just meeting up or whatever that do not really count.
Amongst these, most have their own loyalists who swear by the fun had and nobody can replicate the experience. I have been fortunate enough to know most of them closely and respect what they do and have achieved. I dare take the liberty of assuming that they carry the same respect for me.
I have made brief comments on not attending, but coming to the actual answers of why I’ve not been able to attend or have ended up not attending:
1) I have had to socialize professionally and continue to do so, which requires time and commitment
2) It has been a long standing promise to my daughter and wife that weekends will be spent together, though with the daughter grownup, there are changes there also.
3) Social obligations which include friends of the past 30 years and assortment of relatives.
4) Deal and new place no longer excite me.
So, whilst the intent is there, the ability to factor that in and meet new people in a new setting is a bandwidth challenge; besides of course some of the groups are actually full of sub 30 youngsters 🙂
In the past I have held an entrepreneurs meet, and used to host a Single Malt evening before all of this became fashionable. And there used to be the MndFck evenings where it was by invitation only and we ended up people actually clamoring for entrance. Most of my endevours were Objective driven, with a completely eclectic mix of people, most of them from the offline world or as kids say IRL (In real world). They continue to badger me to start, but it is no longer a novelty & I always believe in being ahead of the curve, but who knows?
Inshallah, I would be able to attend at least one of these in 2015 or maybe, all of them can jointly have a mega event. In the meantime, more power to all of them, and if I have missed out more groups, do write in.