Food Review: Grain & Bagel, Malad (W)

Will you swim through the murkiest of Mumbai’s puddles to have your breakfast? I did just that (well, almost) on a rainy day to grab her brekka at Grain & Bagel.

I have said it time and again that nothing can keep me away from my breakfast, not even the over enthusiastic Rain Gods. So, when the Mumbai showers were at their best a couple of days ago, I along with a fellow breakfast lover headed to the newest eatery in Malad (W); Grain & Bagel. It’s tucked behind the new Infiniti Mall in the midst of corporate offices.
We entered an empty café at 9.30 in the morning; clearly Malad folks haven’t warmed up to the idea of going out for breakfast yet. A couple of sleepy waiters greeted us and got a little attentive as they saw us walking in. The café has an indoor and an outdoor seating area. We chose the open air one since it was raining and keechad-feechad aside, we love Mumbai’s rains. Despite being located around near Mindspace which is famous for its foul smell, the cafe wasn’t affected by it at all. There’s not much of a view but being located off Link Road the café keeps you away from the traffic snarls. The management has added a nice touch by posting colourful post-its with customer feedback on a pillar.
By the way it’s a self service café, so don’t go plonk yourselves expecting someone to come around to take your order. Decide, order, sit. Got it? Lifting ourselves off the chairs and walking up to the payment counter for every order was too much to ask from us especially given the lack of food in our systems. However, if you tell the guy on the counter that you’ll be ordering more, he’ll keep the bill on hold and will save you the agony.
The breakfast menu includes a mix of pancakes, crepes, eggs, bagels and sandwiches. They also serve risotto, lasagne, pasta and more if you plan to go there for lunch. We stuck to the breakfast menu and ordered a peanut butter and cinnamon pancake with apple syrup (Rs 120) and pesto scrambled eggs with spinach and ripe tomatoes topped with melted feta (Rs 120). The obvious choice of drink was coffee but we were shattered to know that they weren’t serving it (it should be illegal, shouldn’t it?). Our broken hearts were comforted a little with the hot chocolate that accompanied the scrambled eggs. If you can’t live without coffee do check if they’ve started serving it before you make breakfast plans.
Our breakfast arrived in no time and full marks to the staff for that. The pancakes were soft and fluffy and had a hint of peanut butter in them. But I couldn’t taste the cinnamon at all. The scrambled eggs were served with a toast, no butter and no ripe tomatoes. Still, we weren’t disappointed and loved our eggs. There was a subtle flavour of pesto and bits of spinach. We would’ve been happier if there was more feta on top. The hot chocolate felt good on a cold rainy day. On hot days you can opt for a cold chocolate shake with your eggs.
Realizing that the hungry monster within us won’t be satisfied with just too dishes, we went for a make-your-own bagel sandwich. The guy on the live bagel counter fixed us a quick one with rye bread, veggies, smoked chicken and sauces (Rs 198). The sandwich was filling and reminded us ofSubWay. Post our breakfast we browsed through the dessert counter and picked the Gourmet Cupcake (Rs 75). It had beautiful, light frosting and the cake tasted somewhat like a mawa cake which was brilliant given the frosting was ‘oh! so sweet’. We also picked some for our less privileged colleagues in office.
Grain & Bagel is a welcome change to the Goregaon-Malad area which lacks a decent breakfast joint. But they do have their work cut out for them.. and yes, they have to start serving coffee.

Kharcha: Rs 700 + taxes for breakfast
On the burp scale: 3.5/5
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