Le 15 Cafe

French chic in aamchi Mumbai?

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Paris in Mumbai?

Oui! C’est possible . On Easter Sunday daughter no 1 and Ms Papaya accompanied me to the newest cafe on the block:  Le 15 Cafe.  With Colaba being a prominent tourist hang out, Pooja Dhingra, who introduced the macaron to Mumbaikars knew she couldn’t go wrong bringing some Parisien chic to aamchi Mumbai in the form of a cafe this time.  Around 5 weeks ago, Le 15 Cafe  ,an all day cafe specialising in wholesome snacks ,coffees and teas over Brunch, High Tea and Dinner, opened its doors to Mumbai’s foodies

The food

At 10.30 in the morning the place was fairly crowded but we were quickly shown to a table and made ourselves comfortable on a bench alongside the wall . Daughter No. 1 couldn’t resist ordering the Hot Potato which was simply scrumptious : creamy mashed potato with herbs and cheese topped with poached eggs while I preferred the crispy hard bread ciabatta sandwich Le Parisien with a smoky ham filling.   We washed this down with an Americano and my favourite a hazelnut flavoured cappuccino .

Le 15 cafw

Not being satisfied with this calorific onslaught we shared a crispy vanilla waffle drowning in butter and maple syrup with slivered almonds for an extra crunch.

The ambience

The overall feel was Parisien with its black and white chipped mosaic tile floor, high ceiling with pendant lamps and a display case with pastries and macarons. There were tiny marble topped round cafe tables ( a bit too tiny I thought ) and an interesting patterned tile border breaking the monotony of the painted walls. The place was airy and inviting with soft pop music adding just the right touch.

Verdict

I don’t know if the owner Pooja Dhingra was there because of a photo shoot but her presence added to the warmth the place exuded. Even though the cafe was just  5 weeks old, the response has been stupendous and she advises making a reservation in advance to avoid disappointment.

 

  • There is a pay and park service outside but it is better to take a cab especially on a working day.
  • Vegetarians have enough to choose from
  • No hard liquor is served
  • A bit pricey for sure but definitely worth the experience.

Call : +91 9769341994

Location : Shop 18, Lansdowne House Building, MB Marg, Near Regal Cinema, Apollo Bunder,Colaba, Mumbai

Kheema Pao at Ideal Corner

I was early for a dental appointment this morning and was wondering what to do. Should I visit Yazdani Bakery and have some crusty brun pao with hot coffee? Should I visit the jalebiwallah in the next lane and indulge in some deliciously warm crisp and luscious jalebi? Torn between the two options which would have definitely not helped my bulging middle,I took an entirely different turn and stepped into Ideal Corner, a tiny little Irani joint that serves Parsi food.

Now anyone who is a true Mumbaikar will know what an Irani is all about – it is a quaint little place with teetering bentwood chairs clustered around small tables where you can have tea and toast almost all day long and well into the night for a quick snacky meal.

The menu is quite exhaustive and reasonable so I quickly made myself comfortable over a kheemapao breakfast.


I was expecting  a warm bun slathered with butter but perhaps the crotchety cashier (no he wasn’t the typical old unkempt Parsi gentleman who traditionally occupies this place, though he had imbibed the demeanour required by the job all right!) decided that I could do without more calories and had to make do with fresh unbuttered buns and two bits of lime.


But I’m not complaining because the kheema was spicy and immediately aroused my taste buds and I could begin to feel the start of a drippy nose so before my make up dropped into the dish (and also remembering my appointment and sparing the dentist my garlic breath) I packed it up with the second plate of kheema pao that I’d packed up for the folks back home.

Now for a total of Rs. 150 that isn’t a bad deal is it? So if you do happen to be in the Fort neighbourhood and are feeling a bit peckish, [tweetthis display_mode=”box”]do drop by at Ideal Corner for a good cup of Irani brun maska chai or may be the Kheema Pao if you are really hungry[/tweetthis]

Ideal Corner Restaurant
Address: 12/F/G, Hornby View, Gunbow Street, Fort, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400001
Phone:022 2262 1930

Specially TEA

Tucked away behind Mumbai’s Rampart Row is an exciting “new” neighbourhood- the revitalised commercial district of one of the oldest parts of Mumbai. Set right in the heart of the old Fort city, this part of Mumbai was once a thriving commercial hub.  Even though the black equestrian statue (Kala Ghoda) that gave the neighbourhood its name is now reigning supreme in a corner of the Byculla Zoo, the area still goes by its given name and continues to evoke memories of Mumbai’s colonial past.

Tea was one of the drivers of colonisation and the British who succumbed to its charms couldn’t get enough of it from China. This was the reason why they developed the tea gardens in India and iIt seems only fitting then that San-Cha opened its first Mumbai outlet in this area.

We stumbled upon this entirely by chance – and were delighted with both the variety of tea available and the general aesthetic. Tea lovers will enjoy the ambience that transports you to a countryside store somewhere in the hills, while the quirky teapots, tiny milk pots, Chinese tea cups and other teatime paraphernalia leave you with a smile as you sip on the free sample of tea that is available at the counter.

Definitely worth a visit especially for tourists on the lookout for some good tea.

Memories are made of these : Coffee at Starbucks with strangers as friends

It was Sunday morning and I had just finished tidying up. With Diwali coming round the corner, I wanted to grab some groceries so that I could make a few sweet meats, suddenly gripped with a desire to make something festive.

So I decided to go to Palladium, the Mall at Phoenix Mills which is a great shopping destination in the heart of Mumbai. There’s enough parking space and lots to do apart from shopping , like dining out or watching movies.

Hubby Dear decided to accompany me so we set off before either of us could change our minds. The shops were still shut when we reached at 10.30 so we stepped into Starbucks for a cup of coffee, not exactly my favourite place but the only option left open to us, apart from standing outside or squatting on the steps! I decided to deviate from the tired and tested and went for a short Hazelnut latte.

Making ourselves comfortable in the huge chairs available, I waited a bit till our name was called out. I frankly hate this part of Starbucks simply because you get waited on at establishments more basic than this and for the price of a coffee you should get someone to serve!

The coffee was swirled up with a fancy design but when I took the first sip there was no hazelnut at all. Normally I would have passed this by but suddenly inspired by my friend Jo’s insistence on getting one’s money’s worth, I timidly went up to the counter which was way above my head and asked for some more hazelnut flavouring.

Being hidden from view, the server conveniently ignored me but another client standing in the queue came to the rescue. He took the cup from my hand and gave it to the server and insisted he add some more hazelnut flavouring telling me that the coffee was mine and I owed it to myself to be happy!

Since the small Starbucks was already full, the stranger approached and us and shared the table. His wife joined us and soon we began talking as though we were friends. Our coffees were over, the shops began to open and we went on our way….four perfect strangers meeting over coffee….

Thank you kind stranger for teaching me how to get the perfect coffee at Starbucks. I may just get comfortable with having my name shouted out !

 

I’m linking this blog post to WriteTribe

Winter is coming

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          The Winter is coming, it’s a bit of a joke

With temperatures rarely dipping to single digits

In the coldest of cold.

But it still leaves us rummaging in cupboards at home

In attics and trunks for  clothes kept away

IMG_5893          Carefully  wrapped in muslin and mothballs  to wear when its cold.

However, despite the barely perceptible cold weather,

We do have our winter and the joys that it brings.

             The pleasures of eating the fruits of the sea

Fresh pomfrets and sole, red snapper and mackarel

Lobster and prawn

IMG_5980                                       To   grill and to pickle and garnish with lime

or fry to a crisp with a  breadcrumby crust

 

Winter’s  juicy red  carrots make a halwa divine.

Its sweet peas so tender to  stuff samosas for tea

Winter brings mornings that are crisp with a chill

undhya             That needs you to warm up with a porridge of oatmeal

Or Phada nu khichada cracked wheat that’s wholesome

With spices and ghee.

Hot gulab jamuns and other foodies’ delights.

Like Undhya a mixture of vegetables and beans

Cooked slowly with spices by each Undhya Queen.

Winter means fondue and hot chocolate drinks

Of mulled wine and hot soups, apple pies and cream

So even if Mumbai’s winters don’t mean warm sweaters or cozying up in front of a fire

It doesn’t mean standing in the mild winter sun

It doesn’t mean shivering in mist shrouded bus stops

It doesn’t mean heavy winter quilts and hot water bottles

Winter means partying with jewels and silk

It means dark early mornings with sunsets at six.

It means unfrizzy hair and non sweaty skins.

I love Mumbai’s winter and can’t really wait

And glad it is coming this year not too late!

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.45BDCEF73F6966D317D574400CDAA4E9