By Aditi Datta

You may be a Monica with a bestie who’s just like Rachel. You know a geeky Ross, and have a friend whose jokes are worse than Chandler’s. You may even know a high pitched Janice whose ‘Oh My God’ makes you wish that people all over the world would universally embrace OMG as the official term for exclamation. But when it all comes down to a neighbourhood coffee shop where the crew can hang – where do you go, my lovely?

I’ve found that the magic of coffee is often in the coffee shop. We’re lucky to know a few cafes that pay as much attention to the cup as they do to the cushions; our latest crush in the category is the delightful Madison & Pike.

An American style café and bake shop, it makes me simultaneously wish it was bigger so more people could share the joy, and wish it stays cozy enough to make you feel like you don’t need an occasion to be there.

Started by one enterprising Seattle-return, the name refers to two individual streets that in real life don’t intersect, but have inspired Sakshi Budhraja to bring together her love for marketplace artisanship and gastronomical awesomeness.

Her café warms a corner in Nirvana Courtyard Market with hot brews, as well as freshly baked goodness. When a bright 16 year old customer in the vicinity asked to work at the café and hand-draw all the signage, Sakshi knew her vision of a friendly neighbourhood coffee shop was indeed coming true.

We tried the slightly toasted, freshly baked bread with a blob of orange honey butter – enough can’t be said about how perfect this is for Sunday mornings. As with any bakery, cupcakes are to be expected; although slightly dense, we’re happy to know what lavender tastes like with the unusual icing, on a cupcake that Sakshi personally uses to break fasts, as and when applicable. Yes, you can stick with red velvet if you’d like. For smaller sized bytes of guilt, try one of the cake pops.

The menu covers sandwiches and eggs too; if that feels too safe, try the Pumpkin, Corn and Pesto on Focaccia, the Coconut Crusted French Toast with tropical salad, or the Lemon Ricotta Pancake with sautéed apple.

With free Wi-Fi, and books literally hanging over your head, Sakshi is doing all she can to make you stay just a little bit longer.

Notes in our Little Black Book |

Madison & Pike is an American style bake shop and café that takes it food and drinks as seriously as it does its role as the coffee shop next door. If it were an episode of Friends, this would be The One That Kept Us Coming Back For More.

Where: Nirvana Courtyard Market, Sector 50, Gurgaon

Contact: Find them on Facebook here,  or call them at +91-99717 41763

Prices: Coffee starts at INR 60, cupcakes from INR 65, sandwiches from INR 175