Cafe Calma is a beautiful addition to the resto bars in South Mumbai. This quaint rooftop cafe is located on the terrace of Hotel Shalimar in Kemps Corner and gives an aerial view of the South of Mumbai. The cafe serves European, Mexican, Spanish and Continental cuisine but what stands out is that the finger-licking food is also healthy! The cafe uses organic and sustainable ingredients which are sourced responsibly and if they are not produced in-house, they are carefully curated; ensuring freshness that gives the good food. As we were invited to the cafe for a tasting, we were directed to a well-light, cosy corner of the outdoor seating area to devour the curated menu.
The cafe has an indoor and outdoor seating area. There are a few tables indoor while most of the tables are in the open, overlooking the city. The interiors of the cafe are in a muted colour palette of beige, white and brown. As we visited the cafe during the evening hours, we chose to sit outdoors and enjoy the panoramic view of the city at dusk with the cold breeze that blew mid-winter. The experience of a rooftop cafe overlooking the Mumbai skyline and the city lights from above, was in itself, an experience to cherish.
The menu is curated by chef Ashish and is a perfect blend of tasty options with healthy ingredients. We began with avocado tartines which included Hass avocados, curled zucchini, pistachio pesto, tomato chili butter, pistachio slivers and feta. The generous amount of avocado on thin open bread with a hint of tangy twist of tomato chilli butter was a perfect appetizer to start our meal.
The appetizer was followed by Sumac fries. The golden-brown deep-fried potato sticks topped with spices were crispy at every bite. But what made the dish a winner was the spicy Aioli dip served along with the fries. The vegan dip was a little swirl of flavour which added more taste to the fries.
The chicken tacos were thin tortillas with roast chicken, Aioli, Salsa verde, Hass avocados, Salsa roja and feta. The tacos were spicy with the meat perfectly marinated and cooked. The flavor was simply lip-smacking.
The main course included a Barbeque Burrito Bowl which was a little bowl of healthy, finger-licking goodness. It included tender chicken pieces tossed in BBQ sauce, purple cabbage, kale, Hass avocados, roasted beetroot, leafy green veggies and garnished with pomegranate. There was an element of surprise to be discovered in each morsel from spicy to tangy to sweet. It was a filling meal full of healthy ingredients.
We concluded the meal with a Blueberry Panna Cotta which was a pastel coloured mound with jelly-like texture. The presentation of the dessert was incredible with bluberry garnishing and finely-chopped dry-fruits at the side. The thin layer of crispy shortbread at the bottom of the panna cotta gave a savoury finish to the sweetness and was definitely a plus point.
The cafe excels at the few but fabulous dishes which taste divine with every morsel. The idea of healthy eating while satisfying the taste buds is also appealing. The ambience with the gorgeous views of the city are only adding more winning points to the cafe.