Indian Coffee House – A Thriving Relic

When I used to read or hear about Indian Coffee House, it always came across as a place that was dead and some old timers (read retired men) used to hang out there as the coffee was cheap, location perfect and no one gave a damn. With that kind of impression, I never dared to enter inside, fearing that I might face another government relic and then you do not really go out get frustrated and have bad service and food. 
However off-late the name started to pop up again, quite often, in my conversations with some of the younger friends. And then I was told that they have an Indian Coffee House on second floor of Mohan Singh Place in CP area which has a huge terrace, an open air area . The idea of terrace was good enough to ring several bells in me however still took me some time and two failed attempts to finally set my first foot in this institution. 
Broken dirty looking tables and chairs which seemed as if they would crumble under my weight (or any heavy set human for that matter), an eclectic mix of human faces, two waiters (among others) with cool tattoos on their neck dressed in prim uniforms and several monkeys bouncing here and there were the first things that I noticed.  
Yours Truly enjoying the view from ICH
Coffee, conversations and sun-set. Deadly ??
Finding a table and settling down, you realize that you do not mind any of the things that you would consider sacrilege in some other cafe. The rates are dirt cheap and you anyhow do not go there for food. For me, it was all about the terrace and couple of balmy march evenings that I have spent there have been quite phenomenal. 
However over my couple of visits I could not help but try several of their ‘delicacies’ and being a food blog that FED is, lemme tell you about those as well.
Veg. Sandwich – Dry bread, no butter, no jam (we could not find any), couple of slices of cucumber and tomato. Are you ready for your sandwich ?? ๐Ÿ˜›
Omelete – You really have to work really hard to make a bad omelete  and I guess I will give the crown of worse ever I had to this place.
Paneer Pakode – Ok.. I have had worse. But then I was told that they can be better. Atleast sometimes. 
Masala Dosa with Butter – Was quite impressed with it, it was edible and not bad at all. Cannot say much about chutney and sambar though.

Mutton Dosa – Now this one you won’t get at many places, and though the mutton’s quantity was sporadic to say the least, it was still one of the things that can be eaten there.

Mutton Cutlet – Another item that comes recommended, you might find it juicy, but that juice is the oil it is fried in. May sound bad, but I did not mind eating it at all, atleast till a monkey came and scared us away from our table looking to conquer our food.

Paneer Pakode
Masala Dosa with Butter
Mutton Dosa
Mutton Cutlet
Oh well, the tomato ketchup they serve as a weird red color, but then… ๐Ÿ˜€
Compared to food, their drinks manage to perform better and here you can find Roohafza Sharbat, Lemon squash  Orange Squash etc, things which you will not get at normal cafes.  Coffee was average, Cold Coffee with or without the ice-cream was not bad at all. 
Cold Coffee with Ice-cream and Roohafza Sharbat
Its a place which was never known for its food. The service can be atrocious and food bordering on un-edible. However its the super old school charm of the place and super low prices that keeps in customers happy and there certainly are few items of the menu which can make you sit back after a bite and admit – Not so Bad .. ๐Ÿ˜›
PS – Reading on wikipedia about it,  I realize that it is run by a series of worker’s co-operative societies and has over 400 outlets spread across India. Located at most of the prime locations, makes it one of the biggest chains in country. 

Author: Shashank

CFE โ€“ Cheap Food Enthusiast Entrepreneur by birth, hippie by heart he is here just because he loves to eat. This adventurous biker is constantly looking for new avenues to satisfy his insatiable hunger for food & life. Though he loves sugar dense food, there is nothing sugar coated about him- brutally honest with his words, he often ruffles feathers with his stark naked opinions about food, fancy restaurants & orthodox ideas.

4 thoughts on “Indian Coffee House – A Thriving Relic”

  1. Despite the super slow service, monkeys business (though they add the zing), less than average food etc. what works for sure is the ambiance, no count on sitting time and ordering,indoor section for those serious talks (in case), nothing called a physical bill;courtesy the working memory of the neatly dressed service providers plus its completely chilled out (have seen people drinking and smoking up .. just saying :P)

    The coffee is okay and mutton cutlet is really nice.

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