Vijay Nagpal, chief artisan who for decades helmed the pastry wing at a renowned five-star hotel group, has brought his love for vintage recipes to a new bakery and cafe called Artisan Backerei, Calangute.
This Bakery Recreates Vintage Recipes From Hungary, Germany & Italy
What Makes It Awesome?
The master baker Vijay, with his charming smile and twinkly eyes, is actually over 70-years-old but you won't believe it for a second. Decades of being the pastry chef at Oberoi hotels has sustained his romance with the oven. And his son Rajat, a Masterchef finalist himself, has brought his expertise in curating the savoury menu, as well as his aesthetic (he's also associated with House of Ara) to the table. In all, the bakery's a pure labour of family love.
The name of the cafe-cum-bakery pays homage to every artisan and the German roots of baking. Though small, with just two tables outside, this charming bakery is packed with folks who don't just come to parcel stuff for home but to actually chill over tea and coffee.
What really takes the cake at Artisan Backerei though, is the food itself. We were happy to find that all of it was also affordably priced considering the quality of every ingredients they use. Amongst all the things we had, we have a list of favourites.
The Mediterranean style meatloaf made with lamb (not mutton mind you) at INR 150 was just heavenly, and so was the cute fish shaped pastry (INR 150) that came filled with this kingfish soaked overnight in orange, mixed in with celery, sun-dried tomatoes, and mushrooms. Their Zuccotto Fiorentino (INR 160), a dark chocolate dome filled with hazelnut, cherries and cointreau cream is one of those forgotten desserts from the 16th century that is now served only in Italy and is now in Goa and obviously, we love it.
Try their popular Hummingbird cake (INR 180), a recipe brought all the way from Jamaica, or the Esterhazy Torte (INR 130), a recipe originally made for the King of Hungary. From a Feijoada Pie, to the Three Bean Pie, to the classic Quiche Lorraine, there is a story behind every delicacy here, and they put it out through tiny cards in front of every item. If you are a vegan, try their No Bake Chocolate Mousse Cheesecake (INR 150) made with tofu and vegan cheese.
They even make great breads like Irish Soda Bread or the Egyptian Beer Bread, all handmade and without any yeast. We could really just sit here for hours and keep listening to the stories and indulging – they are open until midnight.
If you are a Calangute (kar), you get a 10% discount on all items on all days, as their ethos is all about being Goan, being in Calangute and feeding the good peeps of their village.
They open at 10am and until 1pm, you can get a 40% discount on all their stuff that is over 36 hours old but still in perfect shape. They also home deliver for a minimum order of INR 500 to villages around Calangute.