|A packed Trincas on Monday night. Picture: Rashbehari Das
So, does Trincas — the Trincas — live up to its romantic stories? It does. And much more. Why am I suddenly talking about Trincas? Because it took me 30-something years to make my Trincas debut.
There’s no real reason why it took so long. Slap bang in the heart of the city, I cross it at least 14 times a week. It’s a permanent fixture on recommendations to visiting friends. But somehow I’ve never been there. It’s a case of ghar ki murgi dal barabar. But last week I decided to take the plunge (urged by a visiting cousin and die-hard Trincas fan). To taste the murgi, the dal and above everything else, to feel the vibe.
Standing outside that etched door, on the ubiquitous doormat, lots of thoughts “trended” past my head. #History. #Character. #Nostalgia. #Usha Uthup.
I took the first step. And I had crossed over. In more ways than one. It’s dark (it takes a second to get used to the lighting). It’s loud (it takes a minute to get used to the volume of the live band). And within five minutes of settling into my booth (right in front of the band and not one of those L-shaped corner tables) I start swaying slightly — and lip syncing to Dream girl, the number that made Hema Malini a “dream girl”. At 8.45pm they belt out Keh do ki tum ho meri varna before making way for an ‘English band’.
The clock strikes nine and a lady in a black maxi dress begins with Señorita. Their repertoire includes Hotel California, Smoke On The Water, Last Christmas… They are seriously good. The feel is fabulous, at one point I even feel like I am on a retro film set and a shimmying — and shimmering — Rekha will appear from nowhere.
The menu (frill-free and black) at Trincas comes in twos — one for the F, another for the B. Starting with Little Bites (masala peanuts, chips, egg pakoras…), followed by soup, Indian, Chinese (vegetarian and non-vegetarian) starters and mains, separate sections for rice-roti and noodles-rice. There is a cool page dedicated to pre-plated platters and sizzlers. The food is non-pretentious and yummy.
Order your F&B, sit back, relax and enjoy the Trincas experience. You might have to fight for attention from the managers and waiters, for there are too many regulars hogging their attention.
Give me two months and I will be right there, receiving preferential treatment. Something tells me I am on the way to becoming a regular!