Around The World In 80 Plates: Cafes & Canteens Attached To Cultural Centres We Love

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Whether it’s brushing up on your French or watching a performance by artists from other countries like Korea and Russia or our very own, cultural centres offer us locals a dose of what diversity is like. And while you’re taking a peek into another country’s culture or exploring our own check out some awesome canteens, restaurants and cafés at these centres – some where you can even try authentic dishes!

Café Mori At InKo Centre

While the centre organises language classes, Taekwondo and monthly screenings of Korean films, Café Mori is where you go to get a taste of some Korean desserts.  This quaint little café at InKo Centre at Adyar Club Gate Road has glass panels to let the sun shine through and you can even sit outside to soak it up; they have a few chairs and tables {each for two}.

From different flavours of coffee and tea like Honey Ginger Tea and Blueberry Latte, you can also tuck into Honeybread with fresh whipped cream, cheese garlic bread and bagel with cream cheese. Want something more authentic? Try Injeolmi Bingsu which is sticky rice cake with shaven ice topped with red beans and the Heukimja Bingsu made from black sesame. Prices start at INR 120.

La Cantine At Alliance Francaise de Madras

Bon Appetit! Alliance Francaise is a popular place in Chennai where, apart from teaching French, they even host a number of performances — plays, music gigs and more. There’s also free screenings of movies you can catch and while you do so drop by their little canteen, aptly titled La Cantine between 9am and 6pm. Expect to nibble on snacks, some not very French though. They offer cutlets, spring rolls, kachoris, noodles, sandwiches and even pizzas, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian. But if you’re craving something sweet you must try their chocolate cake, for just INR 50 a slice.

Winter Palace At Russian Cultural Centre

Ever tried Russian cuisine before? Well, here’s your chance! This restaurant in Alwarpet is quite romantic with it pale blue walls, white ceilings and Moscow-esque décor… Oh, they even have outdoor seating. Catch a ballet performance at RCC or browse through books at their library and then drop by for dinner, maybe? The names of the dishes are paired with pictures on the menu, so there’s no confusion! Would you try Red Caviar Blini {pancakes with cheese and salmon caviar}, Stroganina {Russian style beef carpaccio with the Chef’s special sauce} or maybe Napolean cake for dessert?

The Brew Room At British Council

We already love The Brew Room at Savera, now we get two!? Did you know there’s a smaller, just as lovely version of The Brew Room at The British Council and thankfully open to visitors too! Apart from the lovely ambience with its signature white wired cycles, sip on their freshly brewed varieties of coffee and dig into scrumptious cakes. We’d recommend a delicious mug of hot cocoa – perfect kickstart to your day.

Canteen At The Music Academy

What’s a list without our local favourite? If you’re watching a kutcheri, you’ll probably end up catching up with artists and audiences alike at the canteen. Tuck into Guntur Idli, the Usili Upma, Puli Upma and Vazhathandu Uthapam and finish off with a nice hot tumbler of Horlicks. Just give them a call before you get there as the canteen functions mostly only during special functions like Margazhi and annual dance and music concerts.

Did we miss something? Let us know in the comments below.


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