Its presence identified by the strong fragrance of coffee, small crowds listening to storytellers and music, films, theatre workshops was Café Bean Here Bean There, a travelling café that visited Delhi recently. Adding extra zing and novelty to a cuppa, it was a hit among the Hauz Khas Village crowd, as are many other concept cafés — all with permanent addresses across the city. With themes like travel, beach, biking and even communism, such outlets are doing their best to interest customers.
Restaurateur Marut Sikka says, “The trend of theme cafés is about building a differentiator. It’s a unique way of taking café culture beyond its traditional limits.”
While Kunzum, the well-known travel café, has been around for a while, a few new ones have joined the fray. Take Beluga with its beach-themed terrace, replete with white sand, which aims to deliver a lounge experience. Revv celebrates the Capital’s growing biking culture. May Day is the country’s first Left-wing café and is all about comradeship and books with a bent toward revolution. On the other end of the ‘political spectrum’ is Hinglish, a blend of colonial cuisine and Indian recipes. Lastly, the Flipside café is a dynamic space which keeps exploring themes from European culture to Japanese umbrellas and even Star Wars.
Arijit Bose, a city-based hospitality professional, says, “It’s all about customisation these days. Such experiments work out well when they are done keeping in mind the kind of crowd they want to pull in. These places explore niches in terms of ambience, food and drinks.”
THEME: Cafe for biking enthusiasts
OPEN SINCE: June 2012
USP: Ideal place to meet other passionate bikers, wide range of burgers, pizzas and beverages. Sunday bikers’ gathering at 7.30 am every week.
PRICING: Rs. 125 to Rs. 500
WHERE: M-22, GK-I, M-block Market, Tel: 40571871
THEME: Bistro, beach and lounge
OPEN SINCE: September 2012
USP: Its menu is inspired from best nightclubs around the world. Head here for dishes like the Miso glazed Scottish salmon (from Buddha Bar, Paris), Porcini mushroom and pot pie (from Club B Boss, Hong Kong)
PRICING: Rs. 300 to Rs. 3000
WHERE: M3, M-block Market, GK II, Tel: 45544104
May day Café
THEME: India’s first Left-wing café
OPEN SINCE: May 2012
USP: A variety of coffee and organic teas, and snacks with a ‘commie’ touch — you’ll find a hammer & sickle print on everything. Drop in for film screenings, plays, talks, and Sunday brunch.
PRICING: Pay as you like
WHERE: 2254/2A, Shadi Khampur, New Ranjit Nagar,
THEME: Alternative, funky themes inspired by cultures across the world
OPEN SINCE: March 2011
USP: A wide crêpes menu, cakes, coffees, shakes and pizzas, daily special menu and a lounge inclined towards rock. Display your artworks for free.
PRICING: Rs. 100 to Rs. 300
WHERE: No.7, first floor, Hauz Khas Village,