A healthy romance

By Suman Mahfuz Quazi | Mumbai

A new cafe in Andheri becomes the centre stage for an old love story to turn new amid a table full of nutritious food

Green Village special bruschetta. Pics/Sneha Kharabe

Our partner seems to believe we pretend to know more about food than we actually do. At the risk of sounding racist, he often remarks, "All you've ever eaten is kebabs." Dinner table banter has the tendency to take its own course and as we all know, some courses run down south. But on the night that we head out to visit Green Village Cafe, Oshiwara's new healthy bistro, we are both in a pleasant mood.

The viridescent cafe is a misfit on the busy, traffic-ridden street that we know as Link Road — like a bonsai on a cluttered desk. "Each time you dine with us, you contribute to the well being of farmers," reads the quote on a penny plain painting mounted on the wall. The bright green walls, the kumtor metal chairs, and the artificial ivy running through the entire interiors, creeping all the way up to the ceiling, remind us of a café from our first trip together to Kodaikanal. That trip holds fond memories. And if the entire point of a restaurant investing in ambience can be watered down to setting the "mood", this one manages to do just that, minus the artificial plants.


Cucumber chaas

A little later, after a verbal tussle over what to order, we decide to take it slow and begin with cucumber chaas, a relax rocktail (Rs 140 each) and a green village special bruschetta (Rs 170). All three items arrive soon, indicating prompt service, which is caring and eager, if not sophisticated. The partner, who has an affinity for all things tangy and curd-based, relishes the chatpata cucumber chaas until he steals a sip of our sapid, gingery and sweet rocktail, which leaves him grumpy — pretentious or not, turns out with food, we at least know more than him. The bruschetta, too — served with two toppings: tomato salsa and spinach mushroom — is palatable in spite of the over-toasted whole-wheat bread, which softens eventually as the juices seep in.


Spaghetti aglio olio

For the sake of being experimental, we call for the keto non-veg pizza (Rs 500). With a burnt cauliflower and almond flour base, unnecessary overload of spinach, chewy mushrooms and an overall bitter after-taste, the dish is a straight-out let down. To make amends and despite our full stomachs we call for the spaghetti aglio olio (Rs 310) — a slurpy bowl of gluten-free spaghetti tossed with a succulent mix of sun-dried and cherry tomatoes, fresh basil leaves, mushrooms, sliced zucchini and olives, and adorned with parmesan cheese.


Keto non-veg pizza

Romance for us has long been atypical. We found it in watching international bands or morbid post-modern films together like the awkward hipsters we used to be. So, it has taken us a while to bloom into a couple that holds hands, pays bills and steals longing glances at diners such as this one, because love stories can only replay themselves in backdrops that are familiar.

TIME 9.30 am to 11.45 pm
AT Matruchaya, Oshiwara, Andheri West.
CALL 30151565

Green Village Cafe didn’t know we were there. The Guide reviews anonymously and pays for meals.

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