Thursday, February 10, 2011

Le Pain Quotodien

Rest : Le Pain Quotidien
Meal : Sunday Lunch
Loc : Dhanraj Mahal, Colaba

LPQ is the Belgian cafe chain spread across Europe & North America which has opened its doors in Bombay a few months ago. My schedule being what it was, i wasn't able to check the place out when it had just opened. Those were some dark days, made darker still by a visit to California Pizza Kitchen..

The ambiance at LPQ is fantastic, the decor is modern and well lit. Indian restaurants have really found the courage to try things out and offer more than the old fine dine kitted out feel. The menu however is relatively limited. They have some salads, breakfast dishes and a set of baked dishes.
The menu really needs beefing up, they can continue their bakery/cafe focus but some more complexity would go a long way in competing with the joints across the street.

Home made lemonade, not bad.

self explanatory

Since they are a bakery, they are quite generous with the bread. delicious bread this, would be nice to see some variation in the kind they offer but good stuff nonetheless.

The cheese platter, would not have chosen it this early into the meal but was voted down. Excellent. I miss having my cheese platters, we had brie, parmesan, danish bleu amongst others as well as some strange unsalted pesto. Could have also done with more olives. Delicious though.

The waffles arrived without any maple syrup, in fact the waiter looked at us like we had asked for blood to be poured onto the waffles. Granted chocolate syrup was not bad i would have prefered having maple syrup.

Blame my companions for this one, ordering aloo paratha at a belgian joint.. wtf indeed. Horrible as expected. Why not just try a thing or two if you had to go local and fuse ideas together ? the couscous upma across the street at Indigo deli is a great example which works very well.

The caprese was yum, fresh mozzarella really goes down well. the drizzle of olive oil was nice but a tad inadequate in terms of taste. Missing something.. freshness can only take you so far.

For the tartines i have no idea how they came up with this but this was some paneer and veggies on soft bread. First off, toasting it would have been a good idea so the bread does not get soggy and is a little stable.

Secondly, this looks fairly unappetizing to me, id bite into a lamb before id be excited about also tasted as bad as it looked. Complete disaster.

the espresso creme brulee was about average.

Overall, LPQ seems to strike all the right notes in regard to look, location and ambiance. Even conceptually they seem to be on the right note.

However what it comes down to the innards the menu falters, not just in composition but also in execution.

While they have a selection of safe options (cheese platter, caprese) and the salads are probably best best but everything else seems to falter.

The main culprit is that there is little or no imagination in creating the dishes. Quite like the Transformers sequel. They have all the baubles but could have spent some more money on a script.

The terrines need to be rethought, possibly re-imagined. LPQ is in a location which has a dozen or dining options within 5-10 mins of its location, being below average is not a good strategy.

Food : 5/10
Service : 5/10
Damage : 2600 for 3


lulu said...

paratha at lpq! wtf indeed :)
yeah, the reviews are not very good. only i seem to have consistently good experiences. maybe i order to smae stuff they have mastered!

Gaurav said...

hey Lulu,

yeah.. blame it on the muppets i was there with.

i think LPQ need to relook at their menu and what it is they do well, if the bad rep sticks they will never recover.

Priya said...

appreciate the shameless montblanc flash ;)

Gaurav said...

@ Priya.. it was completely unintentional (cough cough)

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