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Sipping chai by the sea

india Updated: Dec 15, 2011 14:18 IST
Rochelle Pinto
Rochelle Pinto
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

For a city by the sea, Mumbai doesn’t have too many options for citizens to lay back and relax by the waterfront. But Café By The Beach, a spanking new venture that’s opened in place of what was formerly Salt Water Grill on Girgaum Chowpatty, is set to change that.

Embracing the beach, the new eatery is decidedly European in look and menu design.

Varun Kapur, of global Kitchens, which now runs the property, says, “When we entered the venue for the first time, the concept just naturally clicked. We wanted a very European-styled café, something that you’d find in Malta or Seychelles, where people can come to chill even on a Monday afternoon.”

With wooden chairs out by a deck, sand-grazing gazebos and soft ambient music filling the restaurant, it’s easy to remain glued to your seat for more than a few hours.

“We’re fine with people just passing their time here, we don’t want them to leave,” Kapur laughs, “It’s up to the staff to push the products.”

The menu includes sandwiches, salads, milkshakes, mocktails and platters of meat and cheese, and Kapur insists that the high end ingredients are imported to make sure the cuisine is authentic and elegant.

“We have used products like ementhal cheese, parma ham and brie, and our prices starting at Rs 250 for a main course sandwich are quite affordable for the quality of food.”

The place doesn’t have an alcohol licence yet, but the process of acquiring one is underway.

Kapur also adds that given the large population of strict vegetarians in the neighbourhood, they’ve made arrangements for Jain food. The vegetarian fare will also be cooked in a separate kitchen.

Ask him whether the licence problem that caused Salt Water Grill to shut down is a worry, and Kapur says, “Their license was terminated after the 10 year duration ran out, and obviously the restaurant couldn’t run without a licence. We have a three-year agreement, with renewal clauses, so there should be no problem.”

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