Bangalore restaurant reviews Continental

Pepper Cafe

Tuesday, June 07, 2011Me! In words

What seems like eons ago, Abhijith suggested that Pepper Cafe would be a great place to head out to. And so we did. The first time round, we drove down to St John's Road and there we saw this nice looking place set up on flight of steps and with a large glass facade. We were there for dinner and opted to sit downstairs since junior was a bit cranky that night. The lighting was a pleasant dim and the interiors comfortable.

The menu looked pretty interesting and started off with the customary ice teas -lemon for me and strawberry for Sudhakar. Tall glasses of cold respite. Both used concentrates, while the lemon was decent, the strawberry was tad too strong. As a starter we had the Fish Rissoles with tartare sauce. This little snack dish were small patties of fish, evenly breaded, pan fried and served with a thick tartare (the real deal) and greens salad in a vinaigrette dressing. The hot and crisy + thick and creamy topped with crunchy tangy made for some great textures in the mouth. Many permutations/combinations to do that too!

Lemon and strawberry ice tea

Fish Rissoles with tartare sauce

The second time we went to Pepper Cafe was for an afternoon lunch. This time we decided to sit up stairs which is more spacious, has TV to keep kids occupied and gives you a nice view out on the street if you happen to sit somewhere close to it. This time we had one of the specials for starters - Argentinian batter fried calamari with a summer cocktail dip and chickpea salad. We love calamari and were not disappointed with these - quantity or taste. The batter was light while being crispy. The dip too was pretty light on the tongue and did not take away the taste of the calamari. But what we loved most on the plate was the fabulous chickpea salad with slivers of beetroot on it. Truly worth fighting over. I love the fact that they were cooked soft, not the mushy kinds, but the one that turns to mush in your mouth. Would love the salad as a side to any main course. 

Argentinian batter fried calamari with a summer cocktail dip and chickpea salad 

The one thing you will see on Pepper Cafe's menu is that their dishes have really long names, which are descriptions in themselves. Quite enticing then if you read something like Parmesan crusted chicken on a bed of spring onion garlic mash with wild mushroom sauce. How can you go wrong with cheese, chicken, spring onions, mashed potatoes and mushroom sauce. You can't and that's why this main course was fab. There was ample quantities of all that was mentioned in the name. The mash was not the smooth one, but rather the textured variety that you need to bite on a bit. Dunked in mushroom sauce, with a helping of chicken and you are ready to meet your maker. 

Parmesan crusted chicken on a bed of spring onion garlic mash with wild mushroom sauce

Now how can you read a dish titled Line caught wild bassa topped with cajun spiced crab with red cabbage coleslaw and hand-cut chips and not order it? Again, you can't and so we did order it. Two nice and thin fillets, topped with lots of crab meat (one of the two had a slightly fishy smell to it though) that had been tossed in a lemon, parsley and butter mix, coleslaw and chips. Scrumptious to the last bite (if you ignore the slightly fishy smell, which I did, though I did mention it to the staff). The smooth fillet with the crumbly crab made for a great mouthful. 

Line caught wild bassa topped with cajun spiced crab with 
red cabbage coleslaw and hand-cut chips

Spaghetti Bolognese

The Spaghetti Bolognese was when junior was going through her pasta phase. The dish was really wholesome, generous on the proportion and with the cheese too. Of course, a couple of bites later, the dish was packed to become dinner for me in the night.

Warmed grilled tenderloin strips with a tossed vinegar salad

This dish was exactly how the title describes it - Warmed grilled tenderloin strips with a tossed vinegar salad. The tenderloin was moist and soft and the vinegar salad placed on top had permeated down into the meat, making each bite warm, tangy and adding that crunch from onions, tomatoes and cheese. Another fabulous dish. 

Grass fed matured tenderloin with buttered broccoli, potato patty & pepper parmesan sauce, mashed potatoes and horseradish cream

The tenderloin dish was cooked great - yielded to the knife without too much effort. There is an option to get it down medium rare or even rare, but I haven't reached that level yet. The pepper parmesan sauce was just the right level of spice and cheesiness. You can't beat a potato patty and topped off with some cold horseradish cream, you have a collection of tastes, textures and temperatures in your mouth. Yummy! And for dessert, we had the Chocolate something cake. Its just that the names of the main courses had me so overwhelmed that I couldn't remember to write down a simple dessert's name. But it tasted every bit as good as it looked on the plate. 

Pepper Cafe has some great food. Attention is paid to presentation and the chef seriously likes to play with textures, tastes and temperatures. We thoroughly enjoyed the food. Now how far, the "bassa is line caught", the "batter is Argentinian"  and "tenderloin is grass fed" I wouldn't know and honestly it shouldn't matter. The menu can make your mouth drool and the dishes can make it worth the while. A meal for two, going all the way is in the Rs 1200 ballpark. The loo is on the ground floor, unisex and clean.

Address: No: 9, St John's Road, Ulsoor - Bangalore

Phone: 41130000
Accepts Cards: Yes
Parking: Nothing specific and not that big an issue

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