Contrary to the advent of theme based restaurants in Montmartre, which primarily were drinking places in the late nineteenth century, themed cafes since then have evolved into spaces that offer more than just gastronomic delights. Built around a concept and environment, these joints serve oodles of drama along with delectable food that immaculately compliments the gourmet experience.
Having caught the fancy of both the food lovers and non-foodies, these cafes, especially in Delhi, are the latest fad that features unique ideas. From fandom-themed cafes, Bollywood-fashioned joints to restaurants celebrating popular characters from movies, comics, and television, these offbeat eateries have mushroomed all across the capital and the adjoining areas.
And now for those tired of the dull food-eating experience, Guardian 20 brings to you a curated list of the must-visit themed cafes in the city.
Tucked away in Laxmi Nagar, The Minnions is a fairly new themed café, attracting dilliwalahs from all around. Started in April of this year, the café has an adorable blue and yellow décor with interiors inspired from the much-loved movie-Minions.
The restaurant owner, Tushar Jain, boasts of the cafe being one of its kinds and also shares with us the story behind its inception, which not surprisingly was born out of a fan’s frenzy.
Jain narrated, “Behind every successful man there is a woman. And I was lucky to have such woman as my fiancé who is a super crazy fan of Minions and my cafe partner and best friend, Sonam Verma is also a big Minion lover too. That’s how the idea came to our mind. Also, there is no such cafe in India on this theme.”
While the appearance of the menu is inspired by the fictional character, the café is open to people from all age groups and witnesses a huge footfall, especially during the weekends.
Next, comes Café Platform Nine and Three-Quarters nestled in Vivek Vihar. A quintessential experience out of the Muggle world, the restaurant is a pretty great consolation to Potterheads who were gutted with the series’ finale in 2011.
With the myriad of artwork from the fantasy fiction and an actual 9 3/4th platform, the café also serves North Indian cuisine in addition to the typical café food.
Another delight the city offers to us is Kunzum Travel Café in Hauz Khas. Along with giving travel enthusiasts a space to chalk out travel plans and a platform for the like-minded individuals to connect beyond the virtual world, Kunzum also serves a variety of teas, coffee, and chocolate tins.
Running on a pay-what-you-like concept, Ajay Jain, Kunzum’s founder explained to us what perked him to start a travel café. He says, “To have a place for travellers to meet. In the real world—not on social media. To simply bum around. Exchange travel stories. Make travel plans. Read up travel books in the library. Post travelogues and pictures. Even write books. And buy travel books and photographic art.”
“You see people from all walks of life. From college goers to people who want to head out. From people who are backpackers to people who prefer luxury when on holidays,” he added while emphasising on the diversity of people visiting the café.
Bollywood themed cafes are another big hit in the capital. Quenching our thirst for some extra drama is Garam Dharam in Rajouri Garden. Serving food and fostering our obsession for veteran actor Dharmendra, the restaurant is a must visit for all the filmy keedas. With interiors giving a dhaba-like feel, a Dream Girl marquee and a huge portrait of the actor himself, Garam Dharam is the place for all Dharam Paaji’s fans.
Another stellar theme based café is The Westeros. Stationed in Lajpat Nagar, the café takes its inspiration from the highly popular and raved about series—Game of Thrones. Established only a few months back, the café houses GoT iron throne, a photo of Tyrion Lannister and a throne made up of bottles.
Co-owned by three best friends—Saksham, Karan and Vikram—the café has a nice chilling vibe.
Speaking about his journey of starting the restaurant, Saksham told us, “What happened was me, Karan and Vikram around 2014-15 went to Goa. At that point, we had thought that we should all open a club. At that time we were in club Cabana. So obviously when you see a club, you wish to own something like that. So we decided to open a club someday and we left it on ‘someday’.”
“Then we came back and I had my engineering. After my engineering was done last year, I applied for Canada. Somehow, my visa got rejected. Once it got rejected, I re-applied for it. It got rejected again and I was in grave depression. Karan and Vikram at that time proposed to me if I would want to fulfill my dream? I got instantly excited. But then the question was what different should we do?! And I am a huge Game of Thrones fan. However, Karan and Vikram had no clue about it. I suggested to them that there is nothing like it and we should totally have a GoT themed café.”
“During my entire college life, I used to search such cafes that have a GoT ambience… So when I was making the graffiti (for the café), they (Karan and Vikram) asked me what am I doing. I told them to watch it (GoT) and after a few days they were the once suggesting me that you should do this,” the 22-year-old engineer recounted.