At the Craft Café by Sanskrriti in Poompuhar on Anna Salai, the sweltering heat transforms into a balmy setting of retreat. The cafe is adorned with bamboo furniture and awnings of different sizes, in a slight contrast with minimal artefacts.
The space behind the showroom, which is visited by people from across the globe, opened a few months ago, and is a tie up between the Tamil Nadu Handicrafts Development Corporation Ltd also known as Poompuhar, and Sanskrriti.
From pakodas made of millets and varieties of dosas in kambu and ragi, Kancheepuram idly, kalan idly, rice varieties, the desserts too have a traditional touch with items like thinai halwa. For those with a hungry stomach, there are platters. With a plethora of choices at reasonable prices, even a king-size meal thali (platter) would cost about Rs 350.
Santhosh Babu, Chairman and Managing Director of the Tamil Nadu Handicrafts Development Corporation Ltd, says that the idea stemmed when a visitor had pointed out to him that there were no refreshments being served for regular customers like her.
Mital Surendira, creative head of Craft Café, and CEO of Sanskrriti, says that the cafe takes inspiration from ancient roots. “Today, we seem to have forgotten our roots. The food at the cafe will help us reconnect with tradition. Similarly, the take away gifts available are handmade,” she says. Mital adds that the millets used are grown by women in Arakkonam.
Santhosh Babu added that the place will also serve as a venue for artistes who would like to perform, apart from offering space for art talks.