Di Bella relaunches itself with a new name, new menu and new avatar. What does one expect a revamped coffee chain to have? Questions looming large -ranging from why the earlier one was discontinued to how better has the transformation been? Place your orders on a tablet at the table and go ahead and experience the nitro ride.
After a few failed attempts at confirming the order on their digitally interactive menu, I choose to walk upto the counter, myself. But that’s the technologically challenged me. For today’s college goers and game-crazy generation, I am sure it is a cake walk. How many would adopt this style of ordering food over struggling with the tablet. Most of us! This is what I thought, until the smartly dressed manager walks in, to brief us about the gadget and gets our orders rolling. Happy to know that the team is so willing to interact and educate the coffee lovers.
Manager of the outlet, himself, walking behind the vitreen churns out most ordered items.
Finally arrives on the table Masala roast chicken- their signature sandwich filling, made with choice of whole wheat bread. Grilling of bread and the spice quotient was just right and set a balance for our order ahead. Kofta chilly mayo sandwich, which is their star on the menu, was perfectly well-made with hints of ginger. The kofta was dry but the mayonnaise smear made up for it.
Butter croissant dipped in an affogato (espresso topped with vanilla ice cream) reminded me of my trip to a very old patisserie in Paris. Croissant billed perfectly to its name, crisp on the outside and buttery, inside. Biting into it reminded me of Parisiens who love to bite onto the corners first, to check the crispness and then dip them into their coffees. Ditto did we do and headed straight to dip ourselves into the desserts.
A coffee shop with no coffee and desserts savoured yet? We order further.
Tiramisu was creamy, high on coffee but little runny. Though it did not meet my palette, the essence of coffee was clearly their signature. Their chewy chocolate chip cookie, which was stored, refrigerated, in their display vitreen, calls for a shot in the microwave. We did that, got it cooled and it was just right. Cashew and hazelnut verrine was high on rolled cashew and gelatin. This classic combination of chocolate and hazelnut would let down the chocolate fans, but someone who likes gummy desserts would drool over this. It is surprisingly one of their signatures.
Koalaccino, signature coffee with a shot of espresso, caramel and sweet marshmallows was luscious but over sweet and cold. American marshmallow chocolate with Belgian chocolate and marshmallows comes cold on our table too, but another shot in the microwave, just sets the tone right
White shake granita with lychee, coconut and milk had overpowering creaminess and clear taste of artificial essences from the bottled syrups. A blender crushed cold beverage cannot pass for granite but a great beverage option. We were informed much later about, some fiasco with the ice machine. I would have preferred, if the information flowed in when required.
Nevertheless, their coffee beans are lightly roasted. They have a sweet, clean acidity combined with smoothness and softness that fills the mouth. It leaves no hint of bitterness, just a delightful roasted finish. Coffee cups and mugs with a warmer stand to keep coffee at the optimum temperature are designed very ergonomically.
The technological advancement will surely add to the buzz amongst college goers hobnobbing for free wifi and internet access but will this transcend into the balance sheet? Their product taste and value will speak its own story.
For me, it works well; my only concern remains – food temperatures, in an otherwise very well packaged café.