A new address in town serves tasty pastries and some divine bread
A Parisienne café has sprung up on a busy corner of NSR Road! It is called V’s and its owners are Visakh Chandrasekhar and Chef Manikandan. Step in, and the best smell in the world, of freshly baked bread, envelopes you. Surely, the famous cafes in Paris must smell like this.
Young Visakh is back from a year’s course in Cordon Bleu, London. But he is at the moment smoothening out wrinkles a start-up café is bound to acquire. It is Manikandan who bakes, he says. “I pitch in when I have the time.”
Manikandan is not complaining. “I always dreamt of being a pastry chef, and this is what I love doing best,” he smiles. He has nearly 15 years of experience as he has worked in the kitchens of Hyatt, Hilton, Westend, and so on. He started with Hot Breads in Ludhiana and has realised his dream of working in his own bakery.
Warm round loaves of brown focaccia, with rings of olives and sprigs of rosemary, rest in big cane baskets. Next to them are ribbed croissants, still warm and crumbly. Baguettes stand tall and elegant in a holder on the counter. The ciabatta is still in the oven. “We will soon bake multi-grain and whole wheat bread too,” says Manikandan. He is poetic about his love for bread. “When I sink my fingers into the flour and turn it into dough and wait for it to rise before I put it into the oven, I am at my happiest. And when the perfect loaf emerges, it is the best reward,” he says. It is difficult to ignore this paean. And we demand proof.
Wow! The focaccia is firm yet soft. We bite into it and our eyes close in delight. It is delicious. Whatever it is that Manikandan has done, he has done it absolutely right. It is the same with the croissants and baguettes too. We are fans. And there is more good news as we are told they will soon serve soup at the café.
But a café can’t live by bread alone (though we firmly believe this one can), and Visakh and Manikandan point out to their pastries. “We plan to have about 30 varieties and in limited quantity, initially. We will make more once we know how the pastries move,” says Visakh. Both the partners are very sure that they will stick with the best ingredients. Tarts, eclairs, macaroon, crème brulee custards, jellies and marshmallows are just some of the treats. “We are quality conscious, not calorie conscious,” jokes Manikandan as he urges us to try a wicked chocolate filled Danish!
If you want something savoury in between sampling the pastries there is savoury Danish, sandwich and quiche.
Wash it all down with freshly ground French press coffee, espresso, latte or cappuccino. Or just elegantly served green/black tea which comes with limpid honey in a small glass cup, if you so desire. We recommended you have them with oats and honey cookies. Or may be the muffins.
Only the best
Manikandan and Visakh are at pains to point out that they use the best possible ingredients for their food even if it means they have to bring them in from Mumbai, Bangalore or even abroad. You can see them at work in an open kitchen. They say they would be delighted if their customers asked them questions about the food they provide.
To make the experience of hanging out in the café complete, there will be books, board games and art on the walls. “We are happy to loan the walls of our café for free to artists to display or sell their works,” says Visakh. Soon to be introduced are sumptuous weekend breakfasts that will include waffles, eggs on order, crepes…the works. Visakh and Manikandan plan a special Christmas menu.
Cafe V’s is located at 1 Bharathi Park Road, 7th Cross, Saibaba Colony.
The cafe is wheelchair accessible. For now, it is open between 3 p.m. and 11 p.m.
For details call 0422-4322206