Cafe Coffee Day

“I’d much rather hang out in a cafe. That’s where things are really happening.”
Joe Sacco

CCDs New menu This visit was long overdue. My last Cafe Coffee Day ‘Mysore Royale’ session left me addicted to this beautiful blend of coffee, robust in flavour, royal in taste and always welcome. Not sure how they brew it at the Cafe, but at home a scant teaspoon of condensed milk seems to play the magic, the French Press a loyal companion! So when Cafe Coffee Day unveiled their fresh new food menu for Delhi and NCR in November I knew I had to make good on that invite soon, but I missed the first preview.CCDs New menuA busy November with guests, a visit to Tokyo, more guests, teens exams meant the visit got postponed to December. December proved even tougher by way of time but I managed a visit 2 days ago. Its a great relaunched menu for the holiday season. Winter here means sipping those wonderful lattes. I had a fabulous hazelnut spiked latte at a leisurely pace enjoying the ambiance of the cafe on MG Road, Gurgaon, and then went onto menu sampling.

Here’s where the serious stuff is at. Seriously.
Simply put, Cafe Coffee Day is India’s favourite coffee shop, for the young and the young at heart. We’re part of India’s largest coffee conglomerate, the Amalgamated Bean Coffee Trading Company.

You should see our estates, there’s over 10,000 acres of rolling hills with the coffee shrubs making for lovely walks. There’s 11,000 small growers who make us who we are and we’re glad to be a part of their lives. And we’re not alone, there’s folks in the USA, Europe and Japan that buy coffee from us, making us the top coffee exporter from India!

To put in plainly we brought in the concept of cafes in India (this is where you thank us!). The first one opened in 1996 on Brigade Road in Bangalore. It’s been an exciting journey since then, becoming the largest organized retail cafe chain in the country. Oh, and if your travels take you to Vienna or Karachi Prague, do stop by our CCDs there for taste of the brew from home.

CCDs New menu Asif, a marketing manager with CCD, talked me through the philosophy of India’s foremost cafe chain, the passion behind the company, also the thoughts that led to the new menu. Its a company driven by a hunger for perfection. Refreshingly, they look at competitors as positives, never talk down a rival, rather look to strengthen their position in the market by in-depth consumer insights, demographic researches, intuition, cafe food trends … and the ‘taste of youth‘. CCDI love the driving force that youth today offer. Youth who don’t cringe from calling a spade a spade, folk who are brutally honest about their likes and dislikes, they know their minds, and can speak them … basically they’re very sorted out when it comes to keeping their tummies and wallets happy. The new foods, a host of 11 items, promise to indulge your palette with flavours that are unique, relevant to a global audience, fresh and importantly, great value for money!”CCD Dessert ShotsThe new menus hottest selling item {sorry to begin with the sweet tooth, but they are attention grabbers} are these ‘Dessert Shots‘. They sell like hot cakes. Whats not to love about these neat little desserts that are one of the star attractions on the new menu, and are in two tempting flavours – Belgian Chocolate Shot and Mango Shot. Cheesy Veg CroissantAnother winner to their revamped menu under ‘Small Eats‘ is this Cheesy Veg Croissant. Its a great vegetarian option {and delightful for non-vegetarians too} and ‘lite’ in every way. I doubted I could eat the whole croissant and was glad it was served in two portions. True to Asifs words, it was really light and I happily ate the whole serving! It’s a cold ‘sandwich‘ with crisp cucumbers and tomatoes, with a light blend of sauces and cheese within, offering you a touch of French delight! Who doesn’t like sandwich plattersChilli Cheese Toast I really enjoyed it, as I also enjoyed the delectable Chilli Cheese Toast. For those who prefer a warm off the grill, this is light, crisp and pleasing on the palette, a perfect starter! Featured in the ‘Small Eats‘ section, its a favourite breakfast or evening snack in different parts of the world.Smoked Chicken SandwichThe next temptation I gave in too was a nibble from the ‘Big Eats’ offering of the teens Smoked Chicken Sandwich. Good light bread {something that I love and find lacking at a lot of eateries} with a handsome filling of chicken {unlike many local fast food joints where I find the helpings miserly and disappointing}. Here too the blend of sauces, salad and chicken formed a good balance … mmm, nice bite! The bread is soft and fresh, a pleasing crust with cornmeal, chipotle etc.Feasty Filler (Non-Veg Sandwich + Cappuccino) & Fun Filler {Dessert Shot & Cappuccino}I also had a nibble of the preteens Tandoori Chicken Sub which was ‘well filled‘ again, and slightly spicy thanks to the ‘tandoori‘ origins … delicious again. I couldn’t help but notice the generous stuffing in both sandwiches which offer good value for money. I hear that chicken on menus is a fast moving item in North India {NCR, Haryana and Punjab}.CCD DessertCCD indulges the sweet tooth, something high on the list of most young cafe goers, leaving them spoilt for choice. The offerings range from the revolutionary dessert shots, the classic Black Forest Cake served in a cup, CCD Indulgence among others. I dug into some ‘Indulgence‘ and it was delectable. A fudgy, deep, dark chocolate walnut brownie warmed just right, smothered in a caramel sauce … indulgent indeed. I wish I could have tried the Chocolate Fantasy or the Nutty Fudge Brownie but I had overindulged already, having been spoilt silly by Asif and his passionate team!!

{The above menu is currently available in Delhi NCR and will be launched in a phase wise manner in all the 1230+ cafes in cities across India. All pictures courtesy CCD. }

Thank you to Asif and his team at Cafe Coffee Day, and Aanchal and her team from Madison PR for hosting us!




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“Coffee is a way of life!”
Sunalini Menon, India’s coffee ambassador

Mysore Royal Coffee & Mysore Royal Coffee Macarons with Mocha Buttercream FillingRegular readers of my blog need no introduction to my all time favourite flavour … COFFEE! It’s my first love in food that shows up in layered cakes, cookies, biscotti, panna cotta, ice cream and so much more. Coffee makes the beginning of my every morning bright, so you can imagine my excitement when I got an invite to meet India’s Coffee Baroness, Sunalini Menon.Mysore Royal , Sunalini Menon & Cafe Coffee DayShe was in Delhi to conduct an exclusive coffee cupping and food pairing session to unveil Café Coffee Days {CCD} latest premium coffee, Mysore Royal, that she had created for India’s leading coffee café chain. Walking into CCD that morning transported me into a space I love best. Give me a quite café any day, filled with lilting coffee aromas, the buzz of experienced baristas perfecting the much needed cuppa, the ambiance.  Mysore Royal & Café Coffee Day

Mysore Royale is an aromatic Arabica coffee grown on the ancient slopes of the Bababudan Mountains near Bangalore, the historic mountain which has seen the journey of the elixir of life, coffee. Bringing this unique majestic brew to life is credited to Ms Menon, the connoisseur, the artist. Speaking on this new blend, India’s coffee ambassador says, “With flavours of bittersweet chocolate, caramel and the whisper of rich, ripe fruits, with flecks of sweetness, Mysore Royal is a full bodied wholesome rounded cup with lilting brightness to make you feel like royalty.

The experience was mesmerising, nothing short of magical. Just the name transported you into smooth luxury, a blend that announced its class. What else would you expect from a label that entices you with bittersweet chocolate, caramel and hints of rich, ripe fruit owed to the enthralling diversity of the Rajgiri plantation. I don’t consider my self a ‘coffee literate’ person by any standards and hence my intrigue into the coffee cupping session that morning.Mysore Royal CCDThe super talented, soft spoken, warm lady is a virtual coffee encyclopedia. She knows the coffee bean inside out {each layer of ‘the fruit’ it comes from}, each strain by the name or number, is well versed with coffees from Ethiopia, Uganda, Vietnam, Brazil, Columbia, knows leaf viruses that attack plants and equally well the inventors of different coffee making machines. Her journey into the coffee cup covered all that and more – the viscosity and the texture, blends, origins, plantations in India, fair trade representation, barista coffee competitions … and so much more!She demonstrated five different techniques of brewing Mysore Royal – Indian Filter {dabba filter}, French Press, Stove Top Espresso, Siphon and Electric Drip Coffee Maker, each altering the taste of the coffee, giving the taste buds a different treat. She’s been in this line for over 30 years and is responsible for putting Indian coffee on the global map.Talk tea and you think India. That seems to be about to change with the energy the lady has unleashed on the coffee front. Our greatest strength seems to lie in ‘gourmet‘ or ‘premium’ coffee. Sunalini also treated us to pairings with the coffee, spoiling us with crisp oatmeal honey cookies, light cheesecake, deep divine warm brownies, hummus surprise sandwiches among others … all from the café.Coffee pairingsI think this robust coffee will pair well with food like Lime Buttermilk Pound CakeNew York Style BagelsEspresso Coffee Cream CakeChocolate Almond Olive Oil & Whole Wheat Biscotti, Whole Wheat & Oat Chocolate Chip Cookies, Ulyana’s Almond Cake {fat free}, Stone Fruit Tea Cake and of course macarons! You could tell the magic worked on me. I was back home and brewing Mysore Royal for Mr PAB {a true coffee lover too} thanks to the goodie bag with tins of Mysore Royal and the French Press from Cafe Coffee Day.Mysore Royal CCDSix ‘brewing’ minutes later, the aromas of the coffee awakened our senses, then the kids asked for their share. I brewed some more with hot milk, then chilled it for them for the next morning. Slurp, slurp! ‘This is really good Mama, could be heard for long. “Is there more? Please???Mysore Royal Coffee MacaronsA step further, change of season and coffee drinking days are here, so of course I had to pack in some coffee for Mactweets, as this month, we celebrate the equinox with Macarons de la Saison! What heralds this season for you? For me, the nip in the air signals for that cup of coffee. I made a quick  batch of Mysore Royal coffee macarons, picked the lilting flavours of bittersweet chocolate and coffee for the butter-cream within. NICE!!Mysore Royal Macarons Paired beautifully with a well brewed cup of Mysore Royal. Coffee days are here again. With a blend that entices the palette with flavours of bittersweet chocolate, caramel and the whisper of rich, ripe fruits, would you be tempted to try some? I think we can tempt the firmest of tea drinkers to cross over and feel the magic that coffee has to offer!

Do you want to join us making MACARONS?

If you do, you are most welcome to join us  for the challenge. You can find all the information at our dedicated macaron blog MacTweets. We generally post the round-up by the end of every month, following which a new challenge is posted!

Mysore Royal Coffee Macarons with a Bittersweet Chocolate Coffee Filling

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 15-20 macarons

Mysore Royal Coffee Macarons with a Bittersweet Chocolate Coffee Filling

Coffee macarons using a new premium coffee blend sandwiched together with a bittersweet chocolate and coffee butter-cream.


Coffee Macarons:

1/4 cup almond meal

1/2 cup powdered sugar

3/4 tbsp Mysore Royal coffee powder

1 egg white {about 28-30gms, room temperature}

1/2 tsp egg white powder

2 1/2 tbsp sugar


50gm dark chocolate, melted and cooled

40gm unsalted butter, room temperature

1tsp Mysore Royal coffee powder


    Coffee Macarons:

    Run the almond meal, egg white powder and 1/2 cup sugar in blender, in short pulses, until well mixed {Thermomix: Turbo 1-2 seconds, 3-4 times}

    Beat the egg white until foamy, add the 2.5 tbsp sugar and beat till it holds firm peaks

    Add the almond meal mix and fold until you get a lava like consistency.

    Pipe out on parchment paper {sprinkle with vanilla sugar if desired}.

    Rest for 15-30 minutes.

    Bake at 140C for 12-13 minutes / until the tops are firm to touch.{I bake mine on double trays}

    Sandwich with bittersweet chocolate and coffee butter-cream. {Recipe follows}

    Bittersweet chocolate and coffee butter-cream:

    Whip the butter until smooth. Continue to whip and pour in the melted, cooled chocolate, followed by the coffee.

    Spoon into a piping bag, and chill slightly until you get a firm consistency and sandwich the macarons.

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