If ,like me, you too enjoyed reading the Grimm’s fairy tales while growing up then a gingerbread house would never cease to delight even as an adult !The part where Hansel and Gretel find an edible house in the woods is undoubtedly one of my favourite of childhood fantasies.
So when I spotted some adorable little gingerbread houses at a stall at the Christmas bazaar,I had to stop for a chat. The banner read “Dugout Cafe'” and the stall exuded festive cheer in plenty.The small tabletop Christmas tree was decorated with edible ornaments cut out in shapes to match the season. Candy canes, Christmas trees, gingerbread men and even a roly poly snowman sat amidst the green spikes.
It is the season to be jolly and the ladies behind the counter, Abirami and Priyanka were brimming with enthusiasm when talking about their Christmas goodies.Another item which caught our attention were the thin,crispy Belgian waffles.These were sandwiched with two different fillings,lemon curd and salted caramel.They differ from the breakfast waffles in texture and the tightness of the grid pattern on the surface.This delicious treat has it’s origins in the Netherlands and is known as the ‘stroopwafel’ which literally means a syrup waffle.The waffles were light and the tangy lemon curd filling was a delicious contrast to the sweet pastry dough.
Seeing that the ladies were busy we decided to pay them a visit ,later in the week at their café .Seated inside the cosy ,distressed wood filled interiors,my first question to Abirami was the thought process behind the unusual name for a café. A “dugout” according to the Cambridge dictionary is; ’a shelter for the members of a team at the side of a sports field’. The space around the Dugout café is home to a couple of artificial football turfs and a small cricket pitch.So,the name is most appropriate.Like Abirami her partners Priyanka and Prashant are interested in showcasing varied experiences in addition to serving tasty food made with care minus preservatives.
Right now, the window is all dressed up with snowflakes for the holidays.The counter has an array of desserts from their signature fudgy brownies and chocolate cake to spice infused specials like carrot cake and pumpkin cups which Abirami likens to a pumpkin mud pie.
A long table along one end of the wall offers a view of the sporting arena.I could immediately picture a college student hard at work on her laptop while tucking into a mug of hot chocolate with a side of chilli cheese toast. Did I mention that the dugout café offers free wifi ? That’s not all ,the cafe’ walls include an attractive in built wooden shelf with books and board games to help both children and the grownups enjoy a bit of indoor fun.
The Whatsapp status on the Dugout café’s mobile number reads, “Coimbatore’s first pet friendly sports café”. I asked Abirami what they would do if the pets became unruly. Apparently since opening in September they have only had well behaved pets visit their café and hope that it stays that way.However feeding the pets inside is discouraged.
Dugout café has interesting events happening every Sunday.Information on activities is passed on through word of mouth and via their instagram page.This cheerful eatery is tucked away from the busy main road and offers ample parking space.It is well lit with natural light which complements the neat layout.The costs are kept moderate and while certain items on the menu are fixed,offering seasonal treats are a part of their food philosophy.
The star patterned linen,the casually strewn pine cones and baubles add special touches to the charming interiors.While at the counter don’t forget to pick up the cute green bell and “ring for tea”!
Dugout Cafe (available on google maps)
13 Ammankulam road
Behind Lakshmi Mills
(Side road off avinashi road ,next to Lakshmi Mills)