Restaurant Review: Le Café, Ghatkopar – Don’t Go Out Of Your Way For This One

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So, a friend and I troop into this very modest little café set in the gargantuan R City Mall one sunny afternoon after hearing a lot about it from the foodie grapevine. Ravenously hungry after skipping breakfast and tired after the long commute from South Bombay all the way to Ghatkopar, all I wanted was a good dose of some wholesome comfort food minus any fancy trimmings. And Le Café seemed the perfect antidote to the other fancier eateries that inhabit this mall. Places where ordering a simple meals turns into a stressful ordeal and not to mention the wait time for a table.

Le Cafe
Le Cafe

Luckily for us, at Le Café we had pick of the lot as far as tables go… actually make that comfortable booths with high backs, thus cocooning you in your own private dining space. Love that idea! I also flipped for the clean, rustic, if a tad dark and somber look of the café with very minimalistic décor, minus all the kitschy nonsense like gaudy memorabilia and other tacky tat that you see adorning eateries these days.

A rather surly, unsmiling waiter (guess he was channeling the aforementioned somber mood of the café!) plonks a few menus and proceeds to fill our glasses with room temperature house water without as much asking if we would prefer it bottled or at the very least chilled. It was a hot sunny day, remember? Anyway, as we were hungry and thirsty, the tepid water went down without a fuss as we waited for our first shared dish—the Watermelon Salad with Feta to arrive. And very promptly it made its presence felt in all its bright cheery goodness composed of large square slabs of fresh watermelon stacked atop each other like Jenga blocks, drizzled with an interesting Orange-Brandy Dressing along with crumbled Feta and Nuts. A prime example of how something so simple can be so sophisticated on the palate.

Watermelon Salad
Watermelon Salad

The enormous Veggie Calzone was next to get introduced to us, served along with a nice crunchy shredded lettuce salad. Generously stuffed with olives, basil, baby spinach and of course, oodles of stringy mozzarella cheese, the folded pizza was a very tasty follow up act to the watermelon salad. My only wish was that the chilli-wuss in me should have been informed about the abundant jalapeno peppers lurking in the calzone’s doughy folds as it wasn’t mentioned as one of its components on the menu! Luckily for me, the very well-made classic Lemon-Mint Mojito was the perfect fire extinguisher with its fresh burst of flavour soothing all the aches and pains.

Spice rubbed to perfection and redolent of that yummy char-grilled taste was the Tandoor Cooked Jamaican Jerked Chicken served with its posse of weak supporters like a chewy Red Bean-Barley Risotto, terribly undercooked Fried Plantain and crunchy Spring Vegetables that failed the chicken so very miserably. Equally undercooked were the gnocchi components of the Gnocchi Gorgonzola Cream where six cocktail sausage sized, hard as stone gnocchi(!?) bits sat miserably in a sweetish gorgonzola cream that needed some serious jazzing up. Also in need of some food doctoring was the Three Mushroom Risotto, which though cooked perfectly, was very stingily sprinkled with the cheese, leaving it extremely bland and tastelessly futile. Seriously guys! A little grated Grana Padano cheese served on the side wouldn’t hurt now, would it?

Jamaican Jerked Chicken
Jamaican Jerked Chicken

With my first choice of dessert (the very quirky sounding) Cutting Thandai Mousse unavailable—for reasons best known to them—I settled for a Caramello Crunch on the assurance of the waiter that it didn’t have any coffee in it as I was on a caffeine detox plan. But surprise, surprise. The one that found itself in front of me was reeking of coffee and a taste test confirmed the presence of the bean. Its replacement, a sans coffee one, was perfectly yummy and almost enough to placate all my previous grievances with the place. Almost…
Bottom line: Go to Le Café only if you happen to find yourself in that part of the city, it so doesn’t warrant a special trip.

WHERE? G 42, Phase II, Ground Floor, R City Mall, LBS Marg, Ghatkopar (West). Call, 022 40159999
HOW MUCH? Rs 1,500 for two without alcohol
WHEN? 11am to 11pm
WHAT’S HOT? The portion sizes dished out are large enough for sharing one-by-two on a cozy date!
WHAT’S NOT? The wait staff here seemed to be a bit lethargic in their service and ill-informed.
SHOULD YOU GO THERE? Erm, maybe…

Pics courtesy: Le Café and Raul Dias

Post By Raul Dias (102 Posts)

Lists travel, food and luxury as the tantalizing trifecta that defines him. When he’s not travelling, eating or getting pampered at a spa, you'll find him assaulting his notebook's keyboard with a feral vengeance, churning out what he hopes are intelligent, informative and entertaining stories.

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Raul Dias

Raul Dias
Lists travel, food and luxury as the tantalizing trifecta that defines him. When he’s not travelling, eating or getting pampered at a spa, you'll find him assaulting his notebook's keyboard with a feral vengeance, churning out what he hopes are intelligent, informative and entertaining stories.
  • Asha Bhardwaj

    Woooooooo