Drinking and nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Aqua

    This luxurious yet laid-back open-air lounge allows you to nurse your booze while soothing your eyes on the dreamy waters of the neon-lit central pool. Dress for the evening to be allowed entry (no shorts or flip-flops).

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    OlyPub

    This grungy yet oddly convivial watering hole is a low-key Kolkata classic. The upper-floor bar has comfortable sofa seating, although the downstairs lounge with rickety chairs and boisterous drinkers is more atmospheric. Promotional offers on select booze brands are often available. Chateaubriand-style steaks (₹225) are served by the dozens every evening. The loos are stinky, though – we warned you.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Flury’s

    Dating back to 1927, Flury's is an enticing art deco palace that's a real Kolkata institution. The best time to drop by is during breakfast (English breakfast platter ₹670), or in the evenings when you can just drink coffee and eat slices of gooey Sacher-Torte (cake from ₹80). It's surely the only major iconic world cafe to cite beans on toast as a heritage speciality.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Bikers' Cafe

    A gold-plated low-rider motorbike in the window, helmet lampshades and a Clapton and Led Zep soundtrack set the tone in this youthful pub-diner. Mains include burgers, sandwiches, pizzas, steaks and sizzlers. There's chilled beer in the fridge and cocktails with names like Harley, Triumph and Enfield. The place opens early for breakfast (platters ₹180–₹230).

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Hard Rock Café

    While it really needs no specific introduction, this newly opened branch of the global rock music–themed cafe brings some novelty to Kolkata's drinking scene. Requisite amounts of classic rock come through the speakers as you order yourself a colourful cocktail – some named after music genres or chartbusters. There are tasty barbecue platters on offer.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Hola

    A new gathering spot for South Kolkata's hipster crowd, Hola's main draw is its live-music evenings, which take place several times every month and feature the city's established and upcoming indie bands. The atmosphere is laid-back and cheerful, and there's a good selection of booze at the bar. Occasional food festivals and events are also held.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Tantra

    Kolkata’s best-established nightclub has contemporary sounds throbbing through the single small dance floor and a somewhat cramped chill-out zone, appointed around a central island bar with an overhead observation bridge. On Wednesdays, women drink for free until 11pm. On weekends, the place remains open till 2am.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Urban Desi

    Pumping music energises this highly rated lounge-bar which serves a colour-changing mojito and an elderflower margarita among its long list of cool cocktails. Moroccan lamps spangle the lighting and big windows offer extensive (if none too beautiful) views. There's a small open terrace and a pool table on-site.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Phoenix

    This stylish yet unthreateningly casual bar is most appealing on Thursday evenings when young local musicians perform jazz, blues and progressive sets (from 9pm). It's also one of the city's few nightlife spots to stock a decent range of sparkling wines. A 'smart casual' dress code applies to all guests.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Roxy

    The in-house lounge bar at the Park Hotel, Roxy belts out boozy bellinis, caipirinhas and daiquiris as fast as its stylish patrons can down them. There's some lively music on the PA system, and the dramatic lighting sets the mood for a fantastic evening.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Broadway Bar

    Back-street Paris? Chicago in the 1930s? Prague circa 1980s? This cavernous, unpretentious old-men’s pub defies easy parallels, but has a compulsive left-bank fascination with cheap booze, heavy ceiling fans, bare walls, marble floors and, thankfully, no music.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Dolly's Tea Shop

    For sampling authentic Darjeeling teas as well as refreshing mocktails featuring the brew, visit this popular teahouse run by a veteran tea taster. Try the orange–mint julep tea or the lemon-barley tea, with a grilled bacon sandwich on the side.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Xrong Place

    While little can be said about the outlandish decor (and name) of this pub, it's actually a surprisingly good place to enjoy a drink on the cheap. The clientele is mostly millennial, and there's a pool table on the ground floor for potters.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Mrs Magpie

    Cosy, cheerfully lit and adorned with pretty wallpapers, this popular cafe serves cheap and tasty cupcakes (from ₹50) in a wide range of flavours, best paired with fresh espresso. It also serves breakfast platters and afternoon-tea sets.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    UG Reincarnated

    Looking noticeably dapper after a recent renovation, this upscale bar within a luxury hotel boasts a small dance floor, chilled drinks, heart-thumping music, and a cheerful and friendly bunch of patrons. On weekends, expect a crowd.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Smoke Shack

    Fancy to the hilt, this open-air terrace bar attracts stylish people and serves a good selection of mojitos and cocktails through the evening. There are tasty kebabs and other assorted finger food to go with your drinks.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Myx

    Central Kolkata's best-looking nightclub has a second bar upstairs and a shisha terrace on the rooftop. It's housed in a tower above three upmarket restaurants, hidden behind an easy-to-spot KFC outlet.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Irish House

    While not really Irish at all, this is as close as Kolkata gets to a fully fledged nonhotel pub-sports bar. There's lots of weekend ambience and a showman holding the fort at the well-stocked bar.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Big Ben

    An upscale pub with a 'Britain' theme, this cosy watering hole features a good selection of beers and has live sports on TV. It's a fairly casual setting, but avoid wearing shorts or flip-flops.

  • Nightlife in Kolkata (Calcutta)

    Dugout

    If you don't mind the somewhat cheesy decor (cherry-red sofas and a giant neon football motif lighting up the ceiling), this sports-themed cafe is a decent place for catching up on live-sports action, while nibbling on tasty finger food and sipping fruity nonalcoholic concoctions.