Down the Town - At Besant Nagar - Downtown Cafe

Outlet: Besant Nagar
Address: Shubham Building, 7th Avenue, Besant Nagar.
Cuisine: Cafe

Cafes aren't new to Chennai; it's easy to come across one at any part of the city. As well, Cafes are my perfect hangout spot with the company of a laptop or living being. With Besant Nagar it's difficult to fix your mind on one with the so many of them. Though heard of Downtown Cafe I never had the intentions to visit anytime soon thinking the distance I owe to travel. Finally, my friend & foodie Muskaan Dutta tagged a bunch of us along for the on-the-house meet.

Picture Credit - Zomato
The biggest pain was to find the cafe. Never go by ZOMATO maps; they made me walk an extra 4-5 KM to reach the place. It's better to ask someone who knows about the locality or call the cafe to get the directions; until the maps are fixed. After all the struggle to reach the place, I was completely annoyed to even think about food. After relaxing for a bit I grabbed the menu and started placing the Drinks order before they brought the food (a preset menu planned by the restaurant).

It's always advantageous to dine as a huge group so maximum food varieties could be tasted. After the big list of Drinks order, the ambience caught my attention. Wood alike furniture, funky wall posters, fluorescence, coffee aroma and book Shelf were adhering to their cafe theme. Nothing unique or mesmerizing but it's warm and relaxing ambience. Then the tall-elegant looking glasses landed on the table. So here are the Drinks we ordered: 
DT Special Smoothie, Chocolate Ice Coffee, Turkish Coffee, Blue Spot, Cold Milo, Hazelnut Frappe, Peach Lemon Iced Tea, Romantic Replay, Strawberry Iced Tea & Watermelon Iced Tea.

DT Special Smoothie
My order was DT Special Smoothie - a blend of strawberry, mango & dry fruits. Thick, creamy, rich and delicious; a perfect mix of ingredients - the style of smoothie I prefer.
Definitely had my share of taste with all the drinks - Chocolate Ice Coffee & Romantic Replay were the best among them taste-wise; and Turkish Coffee for the espresso-style coffee lovers this would be perfect. Others were so-so.

Before bidding farewell to the drinks, the Salads walked in.
Waldorf (veg) - The apple's sweetness with crunchy walnut bites dressed with mayonnaise is a refresher until the walnuts bitter taste comes your way.
DT Grilled Chicken (non-veg) - The shreds of chicken with veggies & dressing was bang-on.
Apple & Chicken Salad
So before getting our hands down with the heavy mains there was the  Appetizers:
Rice Ball & Quesadilla (Veg) - Wasn't a big fan of both of them. The rice balls could have been cheesier and the rice stuffing was bland. Quesadillas were far better; loved the stuffing - right balance of veggies, sauce and cheese.

Rice Balls
Orly Prawn & Pesto Prawns (Non-veg) - Orly Prawn, crispy batter fried prawns (similar to tempura) with onion rings & chilli sauce is an ideal snack. The portion size is the big worry, too small. The pesto prawn sautéed in the pesto sauce and served along with a salad was good to taste. The sauce overpowers without the salad.

Pesto Prawn, Orly Prawn & Mini Burgers
The Mains came as a saviour:
Chicken Lasagne - Tasted just right. The minced chicken stuff and the layers of pasta sheets had the right balance of flavours; a lavish throw of sauce would have saved the sheets dryness.
Chicken Sizzler - A good to taste chicken sizzler with bread & fries. Tasted like pepper chicken with extra sauce.
Classic Chicken Pizza - For a chicken lover, this would be a perfect bite. Whereas I wasn't fan as I missed my share of cheese.
Kheema Fries - With too much food, I couldn't taste them. Unfortunately, the unanimous winner of non-veg mains was Kheema Fries.
Mini Burgers - Delicious mini burgers with fries. It's more of a starter.
Stuffed Chicken - Though the stuffed chicken tasted great, the corn puree & mashed potato were the show-stopper.
DT Chicken Club - Good ones among the non-veg mains; yummy.

Chicken Stuffed & Pizza, Paneer Burger, Keema Fries
After too-much carnivores it's time to eat something green.
DT Flakes & Flames - The creamy fusilli pasta was the BEST - droolicious.
Spaghetti Arabiatta - Spaghetti cooked in Arabiatta sauce was another beloved dish. Loved it. Both the pasta dishes missed the garlic bread; they served it with a bun which was completely out-of-space.
DT Signature Pizza (veg) - The cheesy & classic pizza with veggies couldn't go wrong. Preferred this over the chicken pizza but not as great as the wood-fried ones (which I am fond of).
Grilled Cottage Cheese - The big piece of grilled paneer with cheese & sauce was tasty. The bland taste of paneer starts to sink after a few bites.
Vegetable Club - Good filling and worth a taste.

Even I was surprised to have eaten the Desserts after the mains but sweets always have space to squeeze into my appetite :-)
Sizzler Brownie (brownie topped with ice-cream) - Most of Chennai restos have bombarded me with sizzler brownie. Nothing new or different from what others serve; tasted delicious for sure!

Chicku Cream & Strawberry Cream - The best pick. Chicku was way better than the strawberry. Creamy and smooth with strong hit of the fruit - Slurrp!
Chocolate Crepe - Light & fluffy chocolate crepes with the drizzle of chocolate sauce. Another good one in the dessert.
Waffles - Neither good nor bad would be the verdict.
Cakes & Tart - Wasn't sure about the names but both were chocolate based cakes. Taste was Ok but the texture was too dense; cakes was a disappointment. Tart tasted better.

Tart, Cream & Cakes
Waffle & Crepe
Ample food choice as per their cafe style but was neither overwhelmed nor upset with the taste.

Breaking Down Points
Location & Parking: Good. Search your route if your aren't familiar with the area. Walkable from Besant Nagar beach. Huge parking space.
Ambience: Good. Simple & relaxing.
Food Variety: Positive. No way you will run out of options. Plentiful variety.
Taste: Good. Expect a few the food didn't taste anything exceptional.
Quality: Good. The presentation was brilliant. Overall food quality is good.
Quantity: Good. Except for appetizers the portion size is good.
Service: Ok. They better get this right else they would suffer. Could be prompt & friendlier while responding to a diner.
Pricing: NA. Good. Though I didn't pay its "Expensive" for a cafe. All cafes are turning out to be pricey as fine-diners so couldn't complain seeing the locality.

My Favourites: DT Special Mocktail, DT Grilled Chicken Salad, DT Flakes & Flames, Chicku Cream, Chocolate Crepe.

So my Verdict!
Downtown Cafe! Another cafe down the town at Besant Nagar. Ambience & food variety adds to their boons. The service & pricing would count under cons. Their look & food variety will lure you through their cafe doors. Worth a try if you're looking for a new cafe to hangout. Eat, Relax, Chat & Repeat!

P.S. This write-up is based on my food palate & dining experience during my restaurant visit. On-the-house bloggers meet. Remember, no two person's palate are same.

Downtown Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
Down the Town - At Besant Nagar - Downtown Cafe Down the Town - At Besant Nagar - Downtown Cafe Reviewed by Divya Srinivasan on 15:52 Rating: 5

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