Sunday, August 28, 2016

Cafe Turtle

Vidit Bhargava
Hidden above a bookshop, Cafe Turtle is a tiny cafe with a seating capacity of not more than 25 people. The cafe, it would appear, is always bursting at its seems. It helps that their food is just too good to be missed if you are looking for vegetarian options in Khan Market.

The cafe, it seems has a single agenda. To provide as many lacto-vegetarian options as possible. They aren't particularly tied to one cuisine, you'll find a greak salad sandwich and an Aloo Samosa in the same menu. One would think, this type of variation would generally end in being just a mish-mash of Indianised versions of the purported options. However, that doesn't seem to be the case with Cafe Turtle, as they try to be just as close to the original food item as they can get.

In this visit, I had a greek salad sandwich, some bruschetta and an Iced Mochaccino at the cafe. The food is good. While the olives dominate the taste slightly, the overall preparation is very carefully done. The Greek Salad Sandwich never seemed to be oozing out of it's shell (something that could have made it incredibly messy), and the bruschetta had a a good balance of garlic and tomato flavour.

Personally, I'd recommend the Greek Salad Sandwich more than anything else. It's filling and it comes in a nice, soft bread which is something new I got to try. In terms of the taste, there's nothing at particular that grabs your attention, it's a very balanced sandwich with none of the sticking out. However, if you are not a fan of hummus you might want to look at other options too.

As much as I liked Cafe Turtle's food, I felt that the Cafe could have been bigger and quieter. A lot of cafe's in order to give themselves a cozy European feel to them, go for high-ceiling and smaller room. As a result, the place feels more chattery than it is. The moment I walked into the cafe, the place felt full of people, even though only a few tables were occupied, the voices felt very loud and hardly something you'd enjoy, if you just wanted to have your meal in peace. But that's just me, a lot of people prefer the noise (or are the noise makers themselves).

While the noise and some of the architectural choices reminded me of Soda Bottleopenerwala, the Vegetarian Only options and a balanced authentic taste give Cafe Turtle a unique identity of it's own. This one's only recommended if you are going with a small group. 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Stop showing Athletes as Superheroes

Vidit Bhargava
Over the last few days the social media is ripe with all sorts of posters depicting the Indian athletes competing in olympics as super-heroes. Draped in Wonder Woman and Superman costumes the posts presumably follow the general trend of telling the crowd how amazing these athletes are.

To me, this is just an hyperbolic reaction. We see very little of these athletes to acknowledge their strength and so every two years we feel the need to tell the crowd at large about the mistake they are doing by ignoring these sportspersons and so this year, taking an hyperbolic turn the social media has decided that the 2016 Olympics for India are about Woman Power, Athletes being larger than life superheroes, and in general some sort of legends, instead of athletes showing a lot of promise and doing well in a lot of fields (an ideal pitch for more investment in fields like gymnastics and rowing, as they've shown potential for great performance)

This is wrong whichever way you look at it. First, we are not doing anything to acknowledge the fact their sports need more respect in the country. By displaying them as Wonder Woman or Superman, we're sending out a message that their profession lacks appeal.  We are also setting sky-high expectations from many athletes who are still learning to compete at a global stage.

Personally, I feel that I'd like to know Srikant Kidambi, PV Sindhu and Dipa Karmakar or Dattu Bhokanal as Badminton Players, Gynmasts or Rowers. I'd like to know them for their profession, and the fact that their sport is just as important as something like Cricket. Every time I look at them in a hero personification, I fear we'll loose the plot. The plot of investing heavily in training them and turning the half-chances from this year's olympics, into gold medals for the next time.