Sunday, May 24, 2009

Reopening mantra: new look, old brew

Reopening mantra: new look, old brew
India Coffee House has a new address from Monday — Church Street. After a two-month gap, one can relish conversation over a cuppa
Jayashree Nandi | TNN

Bangalore: The flavour of freshly brewed coffee is in the air. Long conversations over a cuppa are about to begin. With scrambled eggs and crispy toast... Yes, the iconic India Coffee House is back.
It’s quite a revamp for the historic coffee joint, which has now moved from MG Road to Brigade Gardens on Church Street after a two-month gap. The staff is trying their best to recreate the ‘old-world’ charm.
Waiters in their red and white uniforms with gleaming smiles were unpacking the cutlery and setting up the new kitchen. Some staffers were busy designing the signboard to be displayed outside Brigade Gardens.
“We’re all set to serve. We will open formally on Monday morning. This is a nice place. We’re really happy to be back at work,” says Ramachandra, a waiter. There are 40 staff members, all affiliated to the coffee workers’ cooperative society. Many of them have been in service for over 30 years, and the two-month gap was a difficult phase for them after the MG Road coffee joint closed.
“Yes, it was difficult. But we never lost hope. We have been in service for so long. The menu and prices will be the same and we are hoping to get more customers. It’s a relief,” says another waiter, A Chinnapan, who has worked here for 35 years.
Some fear whether foreigners, who form a major chunk of their customers, would be able to locate the new place.
Others recollect that MG Road was an iconic location but hope the new place would be able to recreate the charisma. “That location (old one) was good because it was on the main road. Many famous people used to drop by. We miss that building. But I think even this place will pick up. Old customers will follow us,” says a smiling Peter John, the cook.
The new joint will follow the old schedule — from 9 am to 9 pm.
For all those gearing up to hit the new India Coffee House on Monday, be prepared for a cafe with a new look of blue walls, old furniture and shining cutlery.
But coffee, they promise, will be the same.


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