Mumbai's Best Old School Pubs To Visit For Some Nostalgia
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When it comes to immersing oneself in the vibrant culture of Mumbai, one cannot overlook the city's legendary old-school pubs. These establishments are more than just places to grab a drink; they are living embodiments of the city's rich history, serving as cultural hubs where locals and tourists alike gather to unwind, share stories, and celebrate life. Let us take you on a journey through the ten best old-school pubs in Mumbai, delving into their unique ambience and the experiences they offer, each with its own captivating story.

Leopold Café and Bar

Nestled in the heart of Colaba, Leopold Café and Bar stands as a testament to Mumbai's resilient spirit. Established in 1871, this iconic pub has witnessed the city's transformation throughout the years. With its vintage decor, sepia-toned photographs, and dimly lit interiors, Leopold exudes a nostalgic charm that instantly transports visitors to a bygone era. The pub's warm atmosphere, combined with its delectable cuisine and well-curated selection of drinks, makes it a cherished spot for locals and tourists alike.

Cuisine: North Indian, Chinese, Continental, Seafood

USP Dishes: Draught Beer Tower, Walnut Pie, Beef Chilli, Chocolate Ecstasy, Chicken Poppers, Cappuccino Coffee

Timing: 7:30 am –12 am, Monday to Sunday

Location: 27, Floor G, Rustom Manzil, Nawroji Furdunji Street, Colaba, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 2,500

Kyani & Co.

For those seeking a slice of Mumbai's culinary history, Kyani & Co. in Marine Lines is a must-visit destination. Dating back to 1904, this beloved Iranian café and bakery welcome patrons with its old-world charm and irresistible aroma of freshly baked goods. The wooden interiors, vintage tiles, and antique furniture create an atmosphere reminiscent of a bygone era. As you sip on a cup of chai and savour the famous bun maska, you can't help but feel a sense of nostalgia for the city's simpler times.

Cuisine: Fast Food, Street Food, Desserts, Bakery

USP Dishes: Chicken Cheese Bhurji, Chicken Sali Boti, Chicken Irani Kebab, Rum Ball, Chicken Salami Sandwich, Raspberry Drink

Timing: 8 am– 7 pm, Monday to Sunday

Location: Jer Mahal Estate, JSS Road, Opposite Metro Cinema, Marine Lines, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 400

Gokul Restaurant and Bar

Situated in the bustling lanes of Colaba Causeway, Gokul Restaurant and Bar has been a go-to spot for locals and tourists looking to unwind for over four decades. The pub's vibrant ambience, complete with colourful lights, retro posters, and lively music, sets the stage for a memorable evening. With its extensive range of beverages and lip-smacking vegetarian fare, Gokul strikes the perfect balance between casual and festive, making it a hotspot for friends to gather and create unforgettable memories.

Cuisine: North Indian, Chinese, Seafood, Bar Food, Street Food

USP Dishes: Crispy Chicken, Pockets, Rolls, Tandoori Chicken, Chicken Tikka, Drink

Timing: 11 am–1:30 am, Monday to Sunday

Location: 10, Apollo Bunder, Tullock Road, Colaba, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 1,000

Britannia & Co.

Tucked away in the heart of Ballard Estate, Britannia & Co. is a culinary institution that has been delighting Mumbaikars since 1923. Known for its Parsi delicacies, this heritage restaurant embodies a unique blend of Indian and Iranian cultures. The vintage furniture, old photographs adorning the walls, and warm hospitality create an inviting ambience that reflects the pub's rich legacy. A meal at Britannia & Co. is not just a gastronomic experience but a journey through time.

Cuisine: Biryani, Parsi, Iranian, Fast Food, Desserts

USP Dishes: Keema Pulao, Mutton Dhansak, Sali Chicken, Sali Boti, Patrani Machi, Rasberry Soda

Timing: 11 am–4  pm, Monday to Sunday

Location: Wakefield House, 11 Sprott Road, 16 Ballard Estate, Fort, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 1,000

Cafe Mondegar

A visit to Mumbai is incomplete without a stop at Cafe Mondegar, affectionately known as "Mondy's." This iconic pub, located in the bustling Colaba Causeway, boasts a lively and colourful ambience with its quirky cartoons covering the walls. Established in 1932, Mondy's is famous for its jukebox playing retro tunes and the mouthwatering continental and Indian fare it serves. It is a haven for art enthusiasts, as the walls showcase murals by the renowned Indian cartoonist, Mario Miranda.

Cuisine: North Indian, Mughlai, Seafood, Continental, Chinese, Healthy Food, Bar Food, Beverages

USP Dishes: Mondys Steak Boty, King Prawns Tandoori, American Chop Suey

Timing: 8 am–11 pm, Monday to Sunday

Location: 5A, Metro House, Near Regal Cinema, SB Singh Road, Colaba, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 1,700

Café Universal

With its charming vintage facade and antique wooden interiors, Café Universal in Fort is a hidden gem that offers a glimpse into Mumbai's glorious past. Established in 1921, this pub has been a favourite haunt for intellectuals, artists, and writers. Its warm, dimly lit ambience, coupled with the aroma of freshly brewed coffee and a diverse menu featuring European and Indian delicacies, creates an atmosphere that exudes sophistication and elegance.

Cuisine: North Indian, Chinese, Fast Food, Street Food

USP Dishes: Dhansak, Beef Burger, Chicken Burger, Beer, Grilled Chicken, Burgers

Timing: 9:30 am – 11 pm, Monday to Sunday

Location: 299, Shahid Bhagat Singh Road, Fort, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 1,300

Jimmy Boy

Nestled in the heart of South Mumbai, Jimmy Boy is synonymous with authentic Parsi cuisine. Established in 1920, this family-run pub enchants visitors with its traditional Parsi décor, including wooden furniture, vintage photographs, and a welcoming ambience that feels like stepping into someone's home. The extensive menu offers delectable dishes like dhansak, patra ni machi, and lagan nu custard, allowing patrons to savour the rich flavours of Mumbai's Parsi community.

Cuisine: Parsi, North Indian, Fast Food, Malwani, Desserts, Beverages, Mughlai

USP Dishes: Jardaloo Salli Boti, Gravy Cutlet, Blueberry Pie, Patra Fish, Patra Ni Machi, Chicken Salli

Timing: 8:30 am – 11 pm, Monday to Sunday

Location: Plot 11, Ground Floor, Vikas Building, Nyamurti, GN Vaidya Road, Central Library, Fort, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 800

Cafe Madras, Matunga

Nestled in the heart of Matunga, Cafe Madras is a humble eatery that has been delighting diners since 1940. Known for its authentic South Indian cuisine, this unassuming establishment serves up crispy dosas, fluffy idlis, and aromatic filter coffee that transport you to the streets of Chennai. The lively ambience and the aroma of freshly ground spices create an immersive experience for food enthusiasts seeking a taste of traditional South Indian flavours.

Cuisine: South Indian, Desserts, Beverages

USP Dishes: Pessarattu Dosa, Bisibili Bhaat, Raagi Masala Dosa, Malgapudi, Idli Podi, Rasam Idli

Timing: 7 am – 2:30 pm, 4 pm – 10:30 pm, Monday to Sunday

Location: 38 B, Circle House, King's Circle, Near Maheshwari Udyan, Matunga East, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 500

The Bombay Canteen

Combining the essence of old-school charm with a modern twist, The Bombay Canteen in Lower Parel pays homage to the city's diverse culinary heritage. The pub's vibrant ambience, inspired by Mumbai's street culture, is complemented by an innovative menu that reimagines regional Indian cuisine. From the retro decor to the lip-smacking dishes served, The Bombay Canteen creates an immersive experience that celebrates Mumbai's ever-evolving food scene.

Cuisine: Modern Indian, Bar Food 

USP Dishes: Mango Trifle, Peanut Chikki, Kutchi Dabeli, Roasted Fish, Chettinad Prawns, Methi Thepla

Timing: 12 pm– 1:30 am, Monday to Sunday

Location: Unit 1, Process House, Kamala Mills, S.B. Road, Near Radio Mirchi Office, Lower Parel, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 1,700

Café Churchill

Nestled in the heart of Colaba, Café Churchill has been serving delightful continental fare since 1969. With its cosy, old-world interiors adorned with vintage posters and artefacts, this pub offers a charming retreat from the bustling city outside. Known for its mouthwatering burgers, pasta, and sizzlers, Café Churchill has garnered a loyal following over the years, making it a beloved institution for both locals and tourists seeking a taste of nostalgia.

Cuisine: Continental, Italian, Seafood

USP Dishes: Beef Teriyaki, Chicken Corden Blue, Hungarian Goulash, Fish and Chips, Raspberry Soda, Banoffee Pie

Timing: 1 pm–11 pm, Monday to Sunday

Location: Opposite Cusrow Baug, East - West Court Building, Shahid Bhagat Singh Road, Colaba, Mumbai

Cost for two: Rs 1,400

Mumbai's old-school pubs are more than just places to grab a drink or a meal; they are cultural time capsules that transport us to the city's storied past. Through their unique ambience and rich history, these pubs offer an experience that goes beyond the ordinary. Whether you're a local Mumbaikar or a curious traveller, venturing into these iconic establishments is an opportunity to immerse yourself in the city's vibrant culture, create lasting memories, and witness the indomitable spirit of Mumbai.