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Do you like to cycle? Maybe sporting a neon vest and reflective helmet, zipping through the highway before the crack of dawn? You may want to stop reading immediately, and let Ciclo cafe (a cycling-themed cafe) take your money. But if, like me, you are too self-conscious or sceptical about trusting your backside to Indian road sensibilities on 2-inch wheels, finish reading this and then let Ciclo Cafe take your money. Rarely does such an eatery so comprehensively and, earnestly ace everything it strives to be. Beaming onto the Gandhi Mandapam Road, Ciclo Cafe’s houses a cycle (and cycling accessories) showroom, a little cycling-focussed library and a nonchalantly cheerful dining space that stays true to the theme. It is the kind of cafe you could find a corner to type away an afternoon over fast, free wifi. Ciclo’s kitchen serves fairly common (& comforting) staples, but with an uncommon virtuosity.
As every diner’s design sensibilities are being wooed by conceptual eateries, we become strangely welcoming for more. Your corner cafes are morphing from quaint nooks into tiny escapes of imagination by turning more playful and outrageous with their themes. Menus are no longer limited to hefty sandwiches, rather, our palates are dedicatedly dazzled by an onslaught of culinary geniuses that might make you write raving testimonials. Change has come over Chennai with the opening of ‘Ciclo Café’, a lovely bicycle themed café including a cycle-obsessed library and a small in-house showroom to cater to cycling enthusiasts. If you are someone who wakes up at the crack of dawn to paddle their way around Chennai perched on their cycles then this café is for you. Location? Gandhi Mandapam Road, Kotturpuram, Chennai.
Chef comes up with a menu brimming with Italian and American goodies. He plays around with classic ingredients, adding his own flair that takes the menu to a completely new level. It’s the small touches, usually going unnoticed, which hooks your palate for more. Variety is more than decent, spoiling you with a plethora of delicious choices. Order a coffee or tea to pair your meal. They even do delicious shakes and mocktails if you’re interested. Munch on, minced lamb seekh kebab, bbq pulled pork bao, veggie quesadilla & jalapeno salsa, pan seared dill prawns, bruschetta, taco grilled fish and smoked bbq pork baby back ribs. Follow it up with main course entailing, grilled Scottish pink salmon, mushroom & leek buckwheat crepe, bbq chicken with couscous, crumbed fish n chips burger and southern spiced pork chop.
The range of desserts available at Ciclo Café is sublime. You can pamper your sweet tooth with, hazelnut torte, crème brulee, apple guava pie to salted caramel cheesecake. During weekends, cycle your way early morning to the café for a hearty breakfast. Tell them you’re a cyclist and they will give you special offer. The name ‘Ciclo’ translates to cycle in Italian and that’s something you instantly get the gist of when you see the café. Ensconced in a lovely white duplex with huge windows, one can clearly see the cycles hanging inside. Inside, the rooms are casually but smartly decorated in modern form, gently infusing creative elements inspired by cycles. Mood is casual and relaxed here. Ciclo Café is a pocket-friendly venture.