Yesterday, I landed from Delhi. From the airport, I took a 10 minute drive to France. A couple of weeks before that, I had driven two and a half hours to Pune and got a taste of Italy. When a French luxury hotel chain opens who better than two true blue French guests? The dynamic and vivacious Catherine Oden of Atout France, a true aficionado of Indian culture, has now set up a first-of-its-kind celebration “France celebrates India”. She is a gourmet and cooks both cuisines brilliantly. Combining wit and humour with an indepth serious knowledge is Paul Roll, the chief of the Paris Visitors and Convention Bureau. He is a foodie extraordinaire and cooks brilliantly too.nnWalk into the less than twomonth-old glamour-drenched high-ceilinged, glassed in lobby of the Sofitel and whoosh! You are sure to get overwhelmed by those long dripping chandeliers, paying tribute to diamonds (We are in Bandra Kurla Complex remember? The world's largest Diamond Bourse is here).nnJust off the lobby is the 24-hour sprawling Pondichery Cafe with its woven, busy carpet, large decorative light hoods printed with Indian artworks hanging over the live kitchens. It has a Le Bar Diamantaire with its floor-toceiling Wine Tower too.nnCatherine and Paul help me check out the French dishes, while the healers extraordinaire, Meher Davis and Firoza Moos dine with me on another night. The well-made French onion soup lacks the cheesy crust, we enjoyed the tuna rich salad Nicoise, the ham and cheese Croque Monsieur, the quiche and the foie gras too. The crème brûlee left a lot to be desired. The Indian food fared well — buttery dal makhni, luscious Paneer lababdar. Pizza lovers looking for the French version of pizza (Pissaladiere with its caramelised onions anchovies and black olives) or the German one (Flammekueche with onions and cheese) will enjoy them here. Superb fish and chips too.nnA buffet buffs Mecca… we ate our way through 150 dishes, Italian (good), North and South Indian (good), Thai (lackluster), Japanese (soggy sushi),Chinese (okayish), Mediterranean (overcooked non-vegetarian dishes) and even Jain (worth trying). Superb Rajasthani ker saanger. A huge choice of desserts (chocolate fountain et al).nnAlready packed, the buffet is the main draw ( 1500 lunch and dinner. Sunday 2600. For accompanying kids below 12, it's free). Don't take the name of the cafe literally or seriously, there is no food from the erstwhile French colony here. Drop in here for staggering, sprawling buffets, friendly service and don't forget to ask for Cinderalla, the supervisor.
Review posted more than a year ago
The decor of this place wooed my like anything. I fell for it like anything. Awsome food at great price but I dont like the service here. that can do it faster man. Anyway it was good food for money. Desserts are the best fare they serve.
Review posted more than a year ago
This place reminded me of my France tour, for it offers some really exotic French food at unbelivably low prices./ The ambience and the insides are super too, almost like the cafes in France that I was so used to. Service can be faster, but it is made up by the awesome menu and ambience.
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