Saturday, May 22, 2010

Café Noir

I visited Café Noir on Saturday with my food group. Café Noir is in UB City and is a cafe in the mould of a Parisian street cafe (similar to Toscano, which is Italian, also at UB city). The menu is essentially sandwiches with a couple of quiches and burgers, with a whole host of coolers and coffees (Duh! Café, coffee, obviously!) as well. This was my first visit to this place, and boy has UB City changed! The last time I'd been here, Noir hadn't opened up and there was just Rajdhani, Toscano and Subway. Yeah, I know, that's almost's been a while.

Some of us got there early (and here, when I say early, I mean on time) and we while some ordered cappuccinos, I had a Blue Mint Froz, a drink with blue curacao and mint. It looked really nice, but the mint taste overpowered the tangy curacao. I love the taste of curacao, and was hoping to get a bit more of its taste, but there was more of the mint taste and flavour to it. Another drink that is worth mentioning was the Mint Honey Dew, and one of the persons who had it, PS said it tasted good. I didn't care how it tasted, but it looked awesome. The deep red at the bottom of the drink (from the honey mixing with whatever else was there, and also because of the sunlight) seems to have come out nicely in the snap.

Blue Mint Froz

Mint Honey Dew

Although I was tempted to have the chicken and bacon quiche, I went with the tide and ordered a sandwich. All the sandwiches are priced at Rs 160, and trust me, they are well worth the money, both in terms of quantity and quality. The group 'president', Lil, who's also come with me on a review before to Café Mondo, said that the Orsay (having salmon in it) was heavenly. If I'm right, there were about two or three people who ordered the Orsay (with different bread options). The bread options available are baguette, panini, white, and wheat. The Orsay was indeed good, and it was good to see that the amount of salmon meat added into it wasn't 'reduced' in any way when compared to any of the other sandwiches.

I went for a St Germain (having ham) with panini bread. The ham seemed fresh, with the taste gelling well the usual lettuce, tomatoes, and cucumber inside it. Lil herself had a Cafe Noir sandwich, which I think had roast beef in it. There weren't any complaints from her. Another member, VR, had something called a Paris-Nice sandwich. I'm not sure whether it was the option of the bread he chose, or if that was the way the sandwich was served, but it looked awesome with cheese covering the top of the sandwich, and from what he said, it tasted pretty good as well.



Orsay with Panini

Café Noir sandwich with wheat bread

St Germain

One of the three burgers on the menu was also ordered (Café Noir burger), and this one tasted amazing. Since I've been on the lookout now for the best burgers, this one came pretty close, but surprisingly, they hadn't got the construction right. The lettuce and veggies were below the patty as opposed to above it. I'm picky, ain't I? :) A couple of guys came in a bit late, and they ordered a St Lazare (roast chicken) and a Croque Madam, a veg sandwich, having zucchini I think.

Café Noir burger

St Lazare

Croque Madam

The dessert counter looked simply fabulous. It took most of us quite a few minutes to decide what to order because we weren't able to make up our minds. Lil had suggested earlier that the crème brûlée was to die for, so one crème brûlée was ordered. If you've not had crème brûlée before, you'd probably like this, but the one we had wasn't all that great on this day. The 'fired' sugar top snapped off, and the texture of the inside wasn't all that creamy either. I ordered a 3 chocolate ganache, and this was the best dessert of the afternoon. Thick and creamy, it was truly sinful. Lil ordered a Mille Feuille [thanks to boozy g for the correction] (yeah, if you can pronounce that, let me's French!), which was a layered pastry with vanilla inside. It was very nice, but that was only on the sides, the middle seemed barren :( The last of the desserts was a tutti frutti sable, which seemed to have kiwis and figs.

Mille Feuille (Vanilla)

Tutti Frutti Sable

Crème Brûlée

3 Chocolate Ganache

Overall, I loved the food and the desserts, so no complaints from me. Although Lil and a few others complained that the desserts weren't the best this time around (my ganache being the exception), I still thought it's a very nice place to visit, especially on a bright sunny day.

Food: Primarily sandwiches, which were very good.
$$$: Actually not that expensive. Sandwiches are priced at 160, and most of the drinks are around 100-125, and given the quantity (size) served (and the quality), it's well worth the money.
Service: Decent.
Verdict: Amazing sandwiches, although my vegan friends may not agree. Desserts seemed yummilicious, and although when we visited, some weren't done to perfection, it still is worth visiting.

Café Noir, 2nd Floor, The Collection UB City, 24, Vittal Mallya Road, Bangalore; Phone: 40982050

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Shalini said...

awesome karthik, reading your blogs makes me a non foodie wanting to make and effort and try out places you review....

Karthik Shetty said...

Nice to hear that, and I shall take it up as a challenge to convert you into a foodie of sorts :)

zwan said...

seriously awesome blog you have here! im a big foodie myself, and i loove looking at all the pics you post and practically drooling at work :)

Karthik Shetty said...


ruth said...

You know, just yesterday, Anand of Rogue Elephant suggested we visit Cafe Noir. I was sceptical about the prices, but now with this post, you have convinced me. Apparently the eclair they make is brilliant.

Anonymous said...

"mille feuille"

boozy g said...

I think it's Mille Feuille you're referring to.
There's a tuna sandwich called Ocean which I thought was great - along with a Green Apple Fizz Froz.
Did you try any coffee?

Karthik Shetty said...

Thanks for the clarification on 'Mille Feuille'. Coffee - well, a couple of people had cappuccinos, but that was it.

Anonymous said...

"The 'fired' sugar top snapped off"

That's what it's SUPPOSED to do, dude, being hardened caramel and all.

Karthik Shetty said...

True, but not the way this one did. I didn't explain it right actually...the top (at least the portion I spooned off) wasn't done right.

Anonymous said...

On your recommendation, we tried this place yesterday. The veggie burger and the chicken sandwich were so awesome at lunch that we went back and had dinner there also!

Karthik Shetty said...

@Julie: Glad you liked the place... I know I loved it.

Purple Cinnamon and Salt said...

Total reflection of what I feel about Cafe Noir. You must try the cheese platter another time. Inexpensive and like you say, definitely hits the spot. If only they served wine in there...sigh!
On a personal note, nice to see a Mangy/Bunt guy feel this passionate about food besides the usual fare of Kori-rotti and Kori-sukka :)

Karthik Shetty said...

Well, this Mangy Bunt feel like this about any food... no discrimination when it comes to food :) And will try the cheese platter the next time I visit.


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