SWINg! – For the Good Times | Miramar
One of the first cocktail bars in Goa, SWINg! is the newest and freshest instalment to the food and beverage scene in the quiet beach neighbourhood of Miramar. Boasting the largest range of locally brewed spirits and cocktails perfected by travel and passion.
Situated less than 50 meters from the beach in the towering ‘Verandah do Mar’, SWINg! is run by the partnership duo of Mohit Panniker and Rohit Monserrate, who built on their passion for drinks and the art of mixology in this venture. The bar menu has been specially curated by renowned mixologist Yangdup Lama.
Each day hosts a different event along with its own concepts and entertainments like their Live Music, ‘High on Heels’ Wednesdays where ladies receive free drinks depending on the height of their heels, Bottomless Thursdays, etc. Furthermore, Mohit hinted of an upcoming class for lay people to know more about spirits and cocktail-making to spice up home parties and family events.
The decor and ambience are tailor-made for people longing to immerse themselves in the forgotten Swing Era with the melodies of Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Dean Martin among other greats serenading you while you partake in cocktails, shooters and drinks that will keep you in festive spirits.
It was the great Louis Armstrong who once declared, ‘My whole life, my whole soul, my whole spirit is to blow that horn’. SWINg! has its foundation steadied on that simpler time during the American Prohibition, where the emotions of swing music were born and sharing good times with people you loved was fostered.
We found ourselves here on their famous ‘Bottomless Thursdays’ and as a true Goan, excitement levels were high. The concept being, patrons pay a certain cover charge for a category of alcohol (Domestic or Imported) and choose an alcohol brand under the said category. Once chosen, they then proceed to consume an unlimited quantity of the chosen brand in the form of cocktails, shooters or straight up depending on their whims and fancies.
Not limiting ourselves to just one alcohol brand, Mohit decided to entice our capacities with a number of cocktails challenging our senses. First up was the Mai Tai and the Mint Julep. Both the cocktails had a complex air to them. The Mai Tai had an ideal blend of rum with orgeat and pineapple and the Mint Julep, with the fresh mint and ginger ale was refreshing to the taste while not being overpowering with their complex flavours.
Next up was the Rum Punch and the Elderflower and Cucumber Collins.The Rum Punch was a pleasing tropical drink suited for the heat brought by this summer. The Elderflower and Cucumber Collins, however, was a different story. The beautiful look of this drink was surpassed by its delicate and floral taste that lingers on the tongue and keeps you wanting more. From the first sip to final slurp, this cocktail is a definite must try. It is no wonder that this is the fastest selling cocktail on the menu.
We then moved on to the Jungle Love and Apple Cinnamon Strudel. The Jungle Love is one of the signature Goan style cocktails served at SWINg! and is one of the most recommended cocktails of the menu. This brilliant concoction of Feni, Kokum, chilli and lime is like sipping the essence of Goa. The Apple Cinnamon Strudel is an exemplary dessert cocktail to end any meal on a high note.
As we were into our drinks, we received the first of many starters of the night, the Mustard Crunchy Baby Fish. The baby anchovy (Velli or Veleo in Konkani) were well seasoned and flavoured which served as an apt starter companion with our drinks.
The Baby Fish was followed by the Tandoori Fruits. What set this dish apart was the bold flavours of sweet, savoury and smoky that hit the taste buds with each bite. Each flavour blended to form a well-rounded starter that most foodies will appreciate.
The Stuffed Chicken Breast was up next. The tender chicken stuffed with spinach and cheese was rounded off perfectly with the sharp peppery sauce.
Next was our personal favourite off the menu, the Burra Lamb Chops. The meat was cooked exquisitely, not over or under, which was is easy given the varying temperatures of the tandoor. The marinade was delicious, not overpowering in spice nor lacking in punch. The accompanying coriander chutney was smooth and matched well with the lamb.
Lastly, we had the Prawn Kadhai, Keema Chana and Bread Basket. The Prawn Kadhai, one of the spicier items on the menu, was tasty with a lingering heat at the back of the mouth. The management urges patrons to specify their preferred spice level to better enjoy their meal.
The Keema Chana was another standout that we enjoyed. The minced meat and kabuli chana were a great team, with the spices adding explosive flavour in each bite. The SWINg! Bread Basket contains a host of different forms of Indian flatbreads with a quantity to feed a table of 4 and above. All made in the tandoor, these breads are the only way to enjoy the delicious Indian cuisine prepared there.
SWINg! is a great place with friendly management and food to match, whose ambience takes you to a bygone era of nostalgia. They are always pushing the boundaries of cocktail mixing and their mixologists are well versed in the history and origins of various cocktails and are ever eager to share their knowledge with patrons.