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Posts Tagged ‘coffee’

Cafe Lalten, as fresh as it gets!

June 3, 2010 26 comments

Cafe Lalten is an innovative name and goes well with the ambiance of the cafe. The decor is chic though very homely at the same thing.

A make shift library adorns the walls on one side of the restaurant while the other side is stacked with Cafe Lalten mugs and bottles and other accessories. One can pick up any book and spend hours reading and subsequently forgetting about hoohalla outside. Infact, while we were seated there, we had enough of privacy along with a sense of tranquility that resulted in us losing track of time and reaching home late!

We were sitting in the AC section while most of the crowd was in the non-AC section probably for the WIFI available here. Probably that was the reason for the enhanced privacy, if I can say so. Oh my friend also noted that a lot of people who come to Lalten areaantels (slang for intellectuals) probably for the awesome ambiance and the WIFI.

Anyways, back to Lalten, we ordered for Watermelon Juice and Shaadi Walli Coffee. The watermelon Juice was fresh and extremely refreshing in this hot and humid weather. The coffee, besides being very frothy, wasn’t much different than a normal Nescafe coffee.

We also ordered for a Chicken Kebab Sandwich and an almond brownie. The Sandwich was fresh. It tasted fresh. The veggies were freshly cut, the bread felt fresh (and not microwave reheated bread) and the chicken was soft and tender. One single sandwich made me a fan of Cafe Lalten.  Nevermind the great ambiance and the WIFI and the hours and hours one can spend here chitchatting. The almond brownie was a first for me! And they were very liberal with the almonds which truly made it an almond brownie and not just a brownie with a couple of almonds attached.

The food was good, the drinks were refreshing and the ambiance was pleasing. The pricing isn’t too bad either and easily affordable. Lalten also serves Chaat items which is what I really wanted to try but couldn’t as the counter was closed that day! Probably will keep it for my next visit!

Check out the new Chocolate Melange at Costa Coffee

June 1, 2010 13 comments

Have been to Costa Coffee a few times and have never had any complaints with the coffee here. The hot varieties or even the cold coffees are simply superb. A recent trip to Costa was no different either. However, what intrigued us was this big slab of dark chocolate kept aside. Their most expensive pastry, the Chocolate Melange is worth Rs.95. The pastry was garnished with thin sheets of Melange which gave the pastry a slightly bittersweet flavour, a perfect combo for any dark chocolate lover.

We had it is ice cream and it went quite well with the cold vanilla ice cream. The pastry itself was warmed up just a bit which, in my opinion, really bought out the flavours! Thumbs up to Costa Coffee for bringing out the Chocolate Melange – an excellent dark chocolate treat!

On a side note what is up with Costa Coffee and Pheonix Mills? There are three outlets in the same damn mall! Can never miss Costa Coffee if you are in Pheonix Mills!

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Java Green vs. Mocha Shoot – Who is better?

Been to Java Green and Mocha a few times already so though of doing a shootout. Read on to find which is better.

Mocha is a well established coffee house, well know among the urban youth. It is more than just a café as alcoholic beverages and hukka is also served here. These two put together put the vote in favour of Mocha. Don’t forget the coffee they serve here is far better than any other café in Mumbai. Try out the Brazilian or Colombian coffee or just the espresso. Coffee here is as good as it gets.

Java Green on the other hand has coffee that I would  call ‘average’. It won’t keep you awake late in the night but that is not the point here. Coffee is cheap here but the flavours aren’t as diverse as what one may find at Mocha.

Coming to the food well it is a tie in that case. Though Java Green has far better Chicken Crispy Panini than Mocha. The bread is crispy and the chicken is tender. More important the chicken pieces are bigger than at Mocha which is a real disappointment. Overall, the food is better at Mocha.

Lastly, the ambiance at Java Green is no match for Mocha. At Mocha, one feels like spending time, chill out, relax, drink coffee and have conversations. Java  Green seems more formal and the seating isn’t as comfortable here.

Overall, Mocha is excellent for Coffee, Hukka, Booze and Ambiance. Desserts are excellent here and as well as at Java Green. Prices are on the higher side at Mocha so if you are in the mood for some cheap food, coffee and desserts than Java  Green is the place to be.

For those lazy to read, check the rating graph below.

Coffee:  Mocha (M) – 9/10 | Java Green (JG) – 6/10

Food: M – 7/10 | JG – 7/10

Desserts: M – 8/10 | JG – 7/10

Ambiance: M – 9/10 | JG – 6/10

Service: M – 8/10 | JG – 8/10

Price: M – 6/10 | JG – 8/10

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Deja Vu Cafe, feels like I have been here before!

April 24, 2010 13 comments

Well it was my first time here but surely those who have frequented Starbucks, the international coffee chain, will find an uncanny resemblance to the logo of Deja Vu!

The cafe is located on Veer Savarkar Road and is walking distance from Dadar Beach and Shivaji Park. Deja Vu is divided into two parts with the upper area being the most preferred one by its patrons. It is a popular hang out for those who live nearby and is usually a precursor to a stroll on the beach.

Unsure what the pictures of people on the wall signifies. Trying to be a fashion house for chefs??

We ordered for a Espresso with dark chocolate ice cream and a Crushed Ice cold coffee drink.The hot coffee was an excellent refresher. The combination of dark chocolate and espresso was a first for me and it was heavenly!

The crushed ice drink though choked up our throats for it was so cold! The drink was like having crushed ice with just a hint of coffee rather than the other way round. Was disappointed with the ice drink as we ended up with a sore throat!

Overall the prices are moderate and the ambiance chic. However, what took us back was the bill which came on a torn sheet of paper. The cashier didn’t seem to have a machine or even a telephone for that matter! Such a shame for the place can be really happening if they take care of the small things.

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Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf

March 5, 2010 1 comment

Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf (CBTL) was recommended by Daniel soon after he discovered my love for coffee!  So a bunch of us went here and got ourselves a nice cosy seating at the end of the cafe. For the uninitiated, CBTL is located in the same building as the erstwhile Cream Centre, which has now been shifted to Oberoi Mall in Goregaon East.

Yes they are actual employees, just not in the Indian outlet, not yet atleast!

We ordered for our respective coffees including a Cappuchino, Mocha Latte, White Chocolate Latte, Vanilla Latte, Cafe Latte, Americano and a Pure Caramel shake. Damn that is a lot of coffee! To think, we drank coffee, at around 10 in the night (and oh, bless the poor soul who drank Americano!), is insane! Yet we did exactly that!

They have small regular and large and most of the coffees were large and hence prices accordingly with the Cafe Latte and Americano being priced INR 100 each. Looking at the size, one can safely assume that coffee here is value for money.

The coffee here is very good. A little cheaper than Barista and a whole lot better than coffee at Java Expresso and Java Green. Freshly grounded coffee beans, milk and some sugar is all one needs to complement a conversation that can go on for hours.

Besides coffee, we also ordered for sandwiches including a Chicken Club sandwich, Chicken Cumberland Sandwich and a Jerk Chicken Sandwich along with Veg Lasagne.

The club s/w like everywhere else was pretty big and stuffed with salads and chicken pattice. Though it makes for a healthy meal, there is the the minimal Jerk Chicken stuffed with salami.

The white chocolate Latte was a bit like milky bar and coffee put together. But the best of the lot was the Caramel Drink with whipped cream. It was a lot of caramel and had to be shared amongst people.

Overall, CBTL is an excellent place for its coffee and the ambiance. Relax, hold a meeting or go on a date CBTL serves every one. The ambiance is very chilled out here and one can relax for hours.  Though service here is a bit slow but that is no complain especially if you get to have some good coffee over conversations!

Java Green, Bandra Reclamation

February 26, 2010 6 comments

Java Green is a cute little coffee place at Bandra Reclamation located in the same lane as Candies. The coffee place has a very formal ambiance but makes up for it with its location. One of the best places to hang out in the evenings, Java Green also excels in another department – pricing.

Once of the cheapest coffee shops in Bandra, Java Green can give the Barista’s, Cafe Coffee Days and even Candies a run for their money. Being cheap doesn’t mean the coffee is bad. Infact is as good as what you would expect from Barista which is a good 30-40 percent more expensive.

Java Green also has a range of snacks from pastries to puffs to rolls and burgers, all of which are light on the wallet. It is one of those places where one can stuff up on good coffee and great snacks for INR 100.

Quick Bite Garden Restaurant, Kalyan-Bhiwandi Road

February 6, 2010 Leave a comment

Quick Bite, a small highway eatery on the Kalyan-Bhiwandi Road was visited by Trance Dude while on the way to Badlapur a few weekends ago. Since it was way beyond our lunch time decided to stop for a quick snack. Ordered for a club sandwich, butter cheese chicken sandwich and cold coffee with ice cream.

The butter chicken sandwich wasn’t the best I have had. Small chicken pieces and tomato sauce and not so fresh bread! The same was true with club sandwich which wasn’t fresh either! Kinda took out the fun out of the meal! The cold coffee though was really good. Nescafe it maybe but was refreshing nonetheless!

It was a disappointing snack though I’d still give it 2.5/5 for food that wasn’t bad nor was it stale but it wasn’t fresh either! Pricing was surprisingly on the higher side with the sandwiches costing INR 70 (Non Veg) and INR 65 (Veg). Coffee too was worth INR 50 while tea was worth INR 12. I think trying the fresh Dosas here is advisable.

Java Espresso Coffee Co, Pali Hill, Bandra

February 2, 2010 6 comments

Java Espresso is cozy little coffee-house in the same building as Citi Centre, a fashion store. It’s just ahead of the Pali Market on the road that goes towards Carter Road. There a sign board directing patrons to the coffee shop, it cannot be missed.

Once there, it is easy to know why people have a difficulty finding this place. It is located inside a residential building complex and hence has a homely atmosphere. There is ample seating space and we chose the one closest to the gate. Even while we were so close to the gate the settings were cozy and once seated we completely lost track of the time and didn’t realise when 4 hours flew by!

Since we were here for coffee, first up we ordered for our coffees including a Classic Mocha (Dark chocolate based coffee), coffee caramel and some starters to go with it, a Java Basket.

The Classic Mocha here is highly recommended. A rich blend of coffee and dark chocolate made this an instant addiction for me and Rock Chic. The rest tried the Coffee Caramelo which was good as well.

To go with our coffees and conversations, we tried the Java Basket. The basket included perfectly fried French fries and potato wedges. We ordered for two baskets later on as well. The highlight for us was the smile faces which echoed the mood of the gang.

The basket though really good, wasn’t going to fill the hungry tummies of 6 people. So some of us went ahead and ordered some sandwiches and Croissants.  I ordered the Chicken Sandwich and a Chicken Croissant. While the sandwich was not worth its salt, the croissant was really good. The sandwich had tomato sauce and small chicken pieces and wasn’t really what I had expected. The croissant on the other hand was stuffed with chicken though it wasn’t exactly like the ones you get at Cheron.

Though the food ranged from good to average, it was all worth it, for the prices at Java Espresso are quite reasonable. Between the six of us, we spent less than INR 100 per person, a figure unheard of at coffee jaunts across Mumbai. Great prices coupled with good ambiance makes Java Espresso my favourite coffee house for the month!

Prices: Classic Mocha – INR 46

Java Basket – INR 55

Chicken Tikka Sandwich – INR 33

Coffee caramelo – INR 36

Chicken Criossant – INR 30

They also have cheese cake which I plan to relish the next time I visit Java Espresso. Until next time, Bon Appetite!

First up we ordered for our coffees including a Classic Mocha (Dark choclate based coffee), coffee caramel and some starters to go with it, A Java Basket.

Mocha – Lot of Coffee!

December 20, 2009 Leave a comment

A coffee lover who doesn’t frequent most of Mumbai favourite coffee hangouts is a statement that defines me! But today it was different. A beautiful evening and the best drink I could think of was beer errrrr (now where did that come from!)… coffee! Been sometime since I went to Mocha, so decided to try the Brazilian coffee here while my friend went for the Colombian version.  Both coffees were served in a big cup, so big that my friend had to use both hands to lift the damn thing!

The coffee lovers that we are, we spent quite a bit of time taking in the strong aromas emanating from our freshly brewed caffeine concentrates. The Brazilian coffee was strong though the Colombian one was the more bitter of the two. Took us a good hour to finish the coffee as we engrossed ourselves in conversations on just about anything!

The coffee was excellent but a sound parameter to judge its effectiveness is how alert it keeps you in the wee hours of the morning. Its 3 AM and I quite alert even at this hour. Though ironically, my friend who had the ‘stronger’ of the two coffees is fast asleep!!

Gloria Jeans – What’s a takeaway?

November 11, 2009 1 comment

Here is a small little rant about a big name coffee house which doesn’t know what a takeaway is! We ordered for a Caramel Latte and a Cafe Latte. Anyways, after ordering coffee worth over INR 200 we weren’t given a takeaway cup but the usual cup which is used if coffee is served within the premises itself. We thought the guy at the counter forgot that it is a takeaway so we asked again and were told that this is all we will get as they didn’t have any takeaway cups. How can a coffee house not have takeaways?? Cafe Coffee Day has and so does Barista and they give you the coffee nicely packed!

I am unsure whether they have a takeaway system or no but the fact that we had to carry 2 coffee cups without proper packaging, on a bike, over bad roads, did not sit well with us. I hope they implement a takeaway system if they do not already have one asap or else they might just loose valuable customers!

We experienced this at the Bandra Outlet which is located next to Sahibaan on Turner Road.