Fab Cafe comes to Chennai and it’s certainly worth checking out
The lowdown: It’s been a few weeks since Fab India unveiled Fab Cafe at two locations in Chennai – TTK Road and Besant Nagar. Positioned as an all-day bistro, Fab Cafe rounds up dishes from across India with a focus on local and organic ingredients. The brainchild of Rebekah Blank and Chef Sunil Puri, Fab Cafe aims to find the balance between wellness and a fun dining experience. The menu doesn’t deviate from the Fab Cafes in other locations like Delhi and Bengaluru.
The space: elegant, minimalist interiors with abundant light. It’s why the Besant Nagar cafe makes a great location for breakfast or lunch. The views are not spectacular except for a couple of windows that offer peeks of Besant Nagar beach in the distance. We like the small touches like the tableware.
The grub: if there’s one reason I’d go back to Fab Cafe, it’s for their beverage selection. From booster shots – their turmeric, amla and sugarcane juice shot truly hits the spot, to cunning blends like their Kokum based mocktail (great textures), there’s a lot on offer. We sampled the beetroot and lotus stem tikki and the Andhra Masala chicken that’s presented on a ganna (sugarcane) sheekh – very clever and very ‘Instagrammable’. The beetroot tikki could have used some real flavours though. We tried the Coorg-style Pandi (pork) curry from the mains but our favourite is their dal makhani that’s delicious and yet won’t leave you in a food coma state.
It’s the perfect home-style black dal that you can indulge without guilt. That’s probably the same theme that runs through their dessert selection. The vegan-friendly mango tart has no dairy, just mango pulp with a thick layer of nuts. The baked strawberry and nolen gud (palm jaggery) cheesecake is probably our pick from the sweet endings. We’d recommend one of their artisanal ice-creams (try the Masala chai flavour) if you really want to wrap up with a sweet dessert.
Bottomline: Fab Cafe manages the tight rope between wellness and a contemporary Indian dining experince. There are quite a few misses – the beetroot tikki didn’t work for us. But the innovative use of ingredients – like the jackfruit flour rotis, and laid-back ambience of the bistro make it worth checking out.
Fab Cafe is at: 3rd Floor, T-25, 7th Ave, Ashtalaxmi Garden, Besant Nagar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600090. Phone: 99888-87995 Meal for 2: Rs 1,200