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Coffee Central

Coffee Central

The first time I wrote about this cafe, I had written about how it reminded me of the cafe in the sitcom, F.R.I.E.N.D.S. I loved the quirky cafe and though today, we have much better looking ones, this is the only one that reminds me of the sitcom. Initially I quite liked it and then I felt that the quality dwindled, but last Saturday, my friend and me wanted to get a quick dessert and this being walkable for both of us, we took the walk! We had just two things, a Layered Mocha for my friend and Brownie Tornado for me. I wasn't expecting anything at all. My previous visit's pasta which was very very average and the almost tasteless sandwich is all I could remember! And so, the two very good drinks came as a pleasant surprise. The brownie tornado was excellent and there is almost nothing to find fault in that drink! My friend's layered mocha was just as nice and together we were wondering if we should come here more often! The times we are looking for a place to hav

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The new face of Focaccia, Hyatt Regency

The new face of Focaccia, Hyatt Regency

Honestly, I wasn't very excited to get a preview of the new menu at Focaccia. My one visit there with family wasn't great and I didn't even write about it. But getting an Italian to helm your Italian restaurant is a great idea, especially if you don't want to Indian-ise the dishes. How the city responds is a different matter altogether and with the packed restaurant, I think I have a fair idea of how, at least the weekend crowd, responds. Also, getting a risotto cooked for me by an Italian chef is ticked off my bucket list! For someone who is very reserved and extremely down to earth, Chef Rrrrr-ow-berrr-tho , from Milan, who has worked around the world as an Italian chef was quite taken aback when my friend mentioned that the best Tiramisu in Chennai was at CPK. "Oh, no, no, no. Not paw-see-ble, " he said. We decided to wait till the end to find out! On course, we were treated to some amazing Italian food. The salad wasn't great.

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Chianti, Bangalore

Chianti, Bangalore

So what happens when a guy who was associated with Bella Ciao for a long time ends up in Bangalore and has a chance to set up a restaurant? Not surprisingly he sets up an Italian restaurant. When I was looking for a place for a quick lunch before getting on the train back to Chennai, I called up my Bangalore counterpart, he promptly asked me to walk down to Chianti. (BTW, the reason he does not have a blog is because he cannot wait to take photos when there is food on the table. He shoot brilliantly otherwise, but that's besides the point) I saw the set lunch menu at Rs. 495 plus tax (which finally came to Rs. 629), but the choice is amazing. You can get any starter, salad or soup from the 10-12 options, any main course from the 20+ options and a dessert from about 5 choices. Without knowing that they serve a plain crostini as a compliment, I ordered a chicken crostini! The plain crostini comes with instructions to make a crostini and essentially is a dry start t

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The Bistro Story

The Bistro Story

After the barrage of Arabian restaurants in Chennai, looks like bistros are mushrooming all over the place. The two recent ones, L'amandier and this Bistro Story place are the latest and since I loved the first one, the day I found out about the Bistro Story, I took two scapegoats and landed there the next day. Location is not pretty so let's get that out of the way. After searching for a bit, we called the restaurant and got directions and it is set in a rather dingy part of Royapettah. Open the door and it seems like a different world inside. With an open kitchen and eclectic interiors, I wish they were in a better location. We were greeted by the chef behind the counter, who I later realised is one of the partners of the restaurant, when he came to chat with us after our meal. We got ourselves a smoked chicken sandwich, a pesto pasta and a curry chicken burger (since there was no beef burger and I couldn't make up my mind from the rather small menu). De

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Dewberry's

Dewberry's

I think I am going back here after a couple of years! Tucked away inside a lane on RK Salai, at that time and now, the look and feel of the place hasn't changed. Beautiful outdoor seating, well spaced out tables in one part, just about coffee shop feel in another and a wonderful place to catch up on a book or a friend. But, that time, it was good bistro, but now it is a slightly confused place, cuisine wise. They have a new brand called something that I forgot with full fledged Indian food for lunch and dinner and the Dewberry brand is only between 3 and 7 during which time they serve a small cafe menu. I wonder why! So my colleague and me wanted some peace and quite for a discussion and that is why we landed there. We got the peace and quite as the restaurant was closed for a month and they had just opened, so we were the only one there. We got ourselves two finger foods - a chicken bruschetta topped with olives and cheese and a stir fry chicken from the very small

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Moon and Sixpence, Hablis

Moon and Sixpence, Hablis

Started off 10D quite a few years back, then Winchester a few months back and now Moon and Six Pence joins the club of 'English' inspired pubs in Chennai, though this is a little Irish! Not very far away from each other and I haven't been to Ireland, so I wouldn't know. They got the ambiance right, though it is not as luxurious as Winchester, the theme is just about perfect with a bar and a lounge area that sort of bring in the 'English' feeling! I am presuming that Irish is similar. I heard that they even shipped some wood from Ireland, though I am not sure of that and would like to ask the owners sometime if that is true! However, moving away from Chennai tradition and the one thing that makes it 'more English' than the rest is that there aren't any club rules and stags are welcomed with a smile. Don't know how long that will last, but as of writing, it applies. What was a tea drinker doing at a pub? As part

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Yana Sizzlers, Bangalore

Yana Sizzlers, Bangalore

So with the new office in Bangalore set between two 'food' streets in Koramangala, eating out has never been easier and the choice is immense! Though au bon pain is now a 10 minutes walk away, I guess, I will still miss it at times, especially if Yana is a benchmark! So the three of walked around, the breakfast at au bon pain still fresh in our minds and decided to try a new place. With an above average review at Zomato, this might not have been a bad choice. The menu is extensive to say the least. Sizzlers and Steaks, though form the majority, the variety is mind blowing! The ambiance is very rustic and is not bad for a sizzler place! We were the only ones in the restaurant for lunch at about 230, but that did not turn us off! The price point was significantly higher with an average sizzler priced at about Rs. 450 and specials priced at Rs. 525 and seafood with prawns, etc priced at about Rs. 600.  The waiters were knowledgeable and were able to suggest dishes base

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Cappuccino, ITC Park Sheraton

Cappuccino, ITC Park Sheraton

This place has been a refuge camp for late nighters since God knows how long! And a place for star spotting post midnight. The star spotting has reduced considerably, though there are those who still swear by this place, but its more grandiose cousin, the Grand Chola, has definitely taken away some of its spotlight. But after a rather sad experience in a new Palace Hotel, we found the comfort here rather welcoming. The place was almost empty at about 11 PM, so getting a table was a non-issue. The big bunch was tired and irritated and so the orders were placed rather quickly. For the first time, out of the eight, five of them chose to go the easy way and get a set meal. So two Chinese set meals, two Indian set meal, a sea food set meal finished the set meal orders, while I wanted to try their burger and my old favourite, the bolognese pasta and one person ended up with a 'Raliway' gravy that was served with rice and there is an option of having it with Indian Brea

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Super Chef

Super Chef

Want to showcase your cooking skills? OK, I got an email about this contest and it looked very interesting, especially the part where it is organised by the Round Table guys and every single penny goes to a noble cause. So, there are the details as given by the organising guys. Superchef Chennai is a culinary competition open only to amateur adults and kids. Food is a big part of people’s lives and interest in all things related to it is at its peak now. With this thought in mind, Madras Cosmopolitan Ladies Circle 38 (MCLC 38) and Madras Cosmopolitan Round Table 94 (MCRT 94), along with The Park Hotel, Chennai, bring to you SUPERCHEF CHENNAI 2014 on the 8th February 2014, the second edition of their hugely successful inaugural event held last year around the same time. MCLC 38 and MCRT 94 are two groups of young men and women from varied professional and non- professional backgrounds who get together and engage in community service activities. In order to sustain their cha

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