So when presented with even the idea of a vegan, gluten-free, vegetable-abundant, cashew-cheese pizza… That can incite a lot of emotions too. In our case, it was sheer amazement. But that wasn’t the beginning of the experience that Earth Cafe was.
Firmly placing itself in Millenial territory with its Millenial pink and ash-toned walls, Earth Cafe’s vibe is modern, young and 100% #conscious. In our minds, we see a boho-chic freelancer typing away furiously, while sipping a latte. A rainbow smoothie bowl looms close by in the vision. Contrary to this though, we saw all kinds of people on the Monday afternoon when we visited - businessmen having a meeting, college-goers grabbing a coffee, and a group of ladies who’d swung by for lunch. The cafe has huge windows that allow all manners of natural light, and all times of day give the space a different wash of colour. The music is easygoing, and lets conversation flow.
Anyway, we eased into the #plantpowered food quite slowly. We started off with a Raspberry-Lime Cooler (INR 190) and a Hydrate juice (INR 210), which had watermelon, chia seeds and basil in it. Both were sufficiently refreshing, and great primers for the amazing food that followed.
On to the solids, we opted for the bright maroon falafel wrap. The wrap was beetroot-toned, and came with house dip which was creamy and super delicious. The coolest part? The “cream” is made with cashews, and you can’t tell the difference one bit. It was quite filling on its own, but there was so much we were excited to try out, so we powered through!
The chef urged us to try the Jamaican Platter next, and while we waited for it to arrive, we chatted away with the owner, Vik Khatwani. A born-again vegan, he told us about how out there veganism seemed five years ago, when he made the decision to give up meat, dairy and everything that comes from an animal. Today, he acknowledges that a lot more people are veganism-curious. We spoke about how loads of beloved dishes are “accidentally” vegan, and how Earth Cafe’s focus has always been on taste.
When the Jamaican Platter came, we were all too sure of that. The dish knocked it out of the park with the simple coconut-based curry, served with rice and plantain fritters. It was comfort food we didn’t know we needed to be comforted by. And we’re quite comfortable saying that this was our most-loved dish. We loved that the cafe is experimental when it comes to cuisines - I think we can all agree that pizzas and pastas are overdone… Except when it’s not your usual pizza.
The piece de resistance followed the Jamaican Platter. As it got placed on our table, we noticed right away that it’s not a ripoff of the average pizza. It’s the pizza of the future, and it signals the shift we’re all aspiring to make to a healthier and more Earth-friendly lifestyle. The Veggielicious (INR 520) is also gluten-free, so if you have a gluten intolerance, you’re super sorted. The base is half pesto, and half tomato sauce, and we loved the fact that you get to taste the toppings tied together by two very different sauces. Speaking of toppings, the pizza came loaded with veggies. And two different kinds of vegan cheese. Creamy, luscious and oh-so-cheesy, the “mozzarella” and “cheddar” on the pizza allows the illusion of the cheat day, without an ounce of cheat in it. We had to do multiple double takes to confirm that it’s vegan! Needless to say, we were gobsmacked. And we’ll be coming back specifically for the pizza, with all our non-vegan friends. It’s an experience you want to share!
As we drew to a close, the mid-afternoon caffeine boost was in order, and we called for the Almond Milk Cappuccino. They offer hazelnut milk as well, and it lends a nutty quality to the coffee which is delicious! Once caffeinated, we felt prepared for dessert. Forgive us for being basic… But we decided to test the vegan desserts by testing a (reinvented) classic. We called for the Vegan Chocolate Cake. Perfectly sweet, and #glutenfree, this one was light, yet sinful and was a delightful eat.
All in all? It’s safe to presume that we’re going to be regulars at Earth Cafe, whether we go #plantbased or not. Take your vegan-curious friends, experimental vegetarians and (probably reluctant) non-vegetarians here!