'Mokai' Brings A Southeast Asian Coffee House Experience To A Classic Bandra Bungalow

Nestled amidst Bandra's rich heritage and artistic flair, Mokai creates a unique identity that celebrates both its Asian influences and the eclectic spirit of its surroundings.
Nestled amidst Bandra's rich heritage and artistic flair, Mokai creates a unique identity that celebrates both its Asian influences and the eclectic spirit of its surroundings.Mokai

Nestled amidst the timeless charm of Bandra's historic bungalows, where each edifice whispers stories of bygone eras through weathered walls and intricate architectural details, a subtle transformation unfolds. Amidst this tapestry of heritage and nostalgia, a hidden gem quietly redefines the narrative. The Newton House, once a bastion of tradition and elegance, now breathes new life as Mokai, a Japanese-inspired sanctuary in the heart of Bandra's artistic labyrinth. This metamorphosis from a storied bungalow to a culinary haven mirrors the neighborhood's own evolution, where the past seamlessly intertwines with the present, creating a dynamic canvas for cultural exploration and gastronomic indulgence.

Stepping into Mokai is akin to immersing oneself in the serenity of Japanese culture. Designed by Studio 6158, the interior exudes a harmonious blend of simplicity and elegance, reflecting the essence of Japanese minimalism. Soft curved walls and neutral tones create a cozy yet sophisticated atmosphere, reminiscent of the tranquil cafes of Harajuku. The menu at Mokai mirrors this cultural amalgamation, featuring delights like Congee — a savory rice pudding infused with miso butter; evoking the flavors of a traditional Japanese coffeehouse.

Located amidst Bandra's artistic enclave, Mokai stands out with its whimsical charm and cultural depth. The bungalow's facade, adorned with Katsushika Hokusai’s iconic Great Wave and delightful ube-pink accents, captures the essence of both Japanese and local artistry. The inclusion of a 'Coffee To Go' counter, inspired by Japanese eateries, adds a touch of convenience for busy patrons while maintaining the cafe's authentic charm.

Founder Karreena Bulchandani's passion for Asian cuisine shines through in Mokai's curated menu, drawing inspiration from her travels across China, Thailand, Vietnam, and beyond. Beyond coffee, Mokai offers a culinary journey encompassing traditional French baking techniques, inventive flavors, and a vibrant Asian cafe vibe. From all-day breakfast options to Japanese sandwiches (sandos), salads, noodles, and bowls, every dish reflects a dedication to authenticity and innovation.

Speaking of coffee, Mokai boasts a house blend sourced from Chikmagaluru and roasted in Bangalore, along with a collaboration with Singapore’s Common Man Roasters, showcasing globally sourced and expertly roasted beans. The beverage menu extends beyond coffee, featuring an array of cold brews, manual brews, teas, smoothies, and specialty beverages from Southeast Asia, such as the Pandan Coconut Cooler and Thai Milk Tea.

Beyond its culinary prowess, Mokai's location in a repurposed bungalow adds a layer of cultural significance. Nestled amidst Bandra's rich heritage and artistic flair, Mokai creates a unique identity that celebrates both its Asian influences and the eclectic spirit of its surroundings. It's a cultural rendezvous, inviting guests to savor not just the flavors but the stories and traditions woven into every dish and every corner of its charming space.

Follow Mokai here.

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