Cafe 17 has a new spacious outlet at Ravipuram offering platters from cuisines around the world
Nearly five years since throwing its doors open, Kaloor-based Cafe 17 has become a landmark in the food map of the city. The cosy ambience and diverse continental platters have made it a cosy haunt for young connoisseurs. But, a frequent comment you hear is about the space constraint (surprisingly never in a discontent tone).
So, the management has now come up with a new 84-cover outlet located on R Madhavan Nair Road at Ravipuram with a reworked menu featuring a small collection of pizzas alongside burgers, steaks and diverse flavours brought in by dishes like nasi goreng and chicken enchilada.
“The initial idea was to have a bigger kitchen that would enable more functions like outdoor catering and party orders. Here we also have the facility for a party area on our first floor, while the regular customers can still enjoy a meal in the ground floor space,” informs co-owner Praveen Mohan, as he greets us into the eatery.
We take a tour of the place which has design elements reminiscent of their first venture (think a blackboard wall) but makes full use of bigger halls to have a comfortable distance between tables.
“As for the food, we want to maintain a familiarity of sorts when a regular client walks into the new venue. So, we’ve maintained favourites from the old menu but have incorporated more global flavours,” says the restauranteur, who has two decades of experience in the hospitality industry.
The pineapple and jalapeño margarita we start with, served in a glass with a chilli-salt rim, proves to be a blend of contrasting yet enticing flavours. A sliced beef and noodle soup that follows has a typical Asian flavour owing to ingredients namely glass noodle, soy sauce, ginger and garlic. Pop numbers boom in the background as Praveen tells us about their in-house sauces and bread variants that are crafted to their specifications.
Next up on the serving cards is fish tartar, a cold appetiser. The top layer is a gooey mix of mahi-mahi cubes with vegetables. It is overwhelming on the palate with flavours that I associate with seafood. The base it’s set on— a subtle mix of potato and avocado with pesto sauce—eases the sensation a bit.
Trusting Praveen’s judgement of Italian food since he has had a long stint with the country’s hospitality sector before curating this menu with kitchen head Jojo A J, we decide to try his suggestion—a lasagna ala Veronese. The satiating dish has a crisp upper crust topped with parmesan cheese, and layers of minced beef, mozzarella and ketchup all served in tomato salsa.
Not as appealing to the eyes as the former, the chicken enchilada, soaked in a chilli-cheese sauce, is surprisingly flavoursome with small cuts of well-prepared meat, corn and crushed pepper. We skip the dessert section as we don’t spot anything drastically different from their old menu, but we sure have the desire to return to try more of their new additions.
From 11 am till midnight.