Location: 1st Floor, HPCL Outlet, Gaikwad nagar, Gaikwad service station, Aundh , Pune
9:00 AM to 11:00 PM
Saturday evenings are meant for friends, laughter and a lot of catching up. In this case Dhanashree and I had a lot more catching up to do after we met last year in London. Dhanashree had gone abroad for her education right after school, since then we had been in touch and she is one of the few friends with whom, years of absence don’t matter. She was visiting her family in the city during the summer so she gave me call two days ago and we decided to meet at Peter Donuts. Well, this place doesn’t really serve a new Korean recipe for donuts but it is a Korean Donut chain that has come up in the vivinity. I had heard a lot about this place and its Donuts. It is a little café on the first floor right next to the Aundh Petrol Pump, the glass windows are visible from the road and it always looked interesting. Finally! I thought to myself. So I drove down in the rain, through the chilly air this Saturday evening, surprisingly I found a parking space right below the café.
I entered through the brightly coloured door, with the specials scribbled on, Donuts, Waffles, Ramen? Interesting! I was very surprised to see this centrally located café with just a few tables occupied on a Saturday evening. I was happy there was no chaos, staff shouting out names or hustle bustle. It is hard to find a peaceful café to chat with a friend.
Why you would love to come back to this place?
First on My List: We were able to have a loud yet private conversation.
Peter Donuts is a small café in comparison with other cafés in Aundh, yet because of the large glass windows and the set up of the place it looked spacious and pleasant. The thing that struck me most about this place was that although there was limited space, the tables were well spaced and well placed. Like a lot of other hangouts in the vicinity, it did not feel like a lot of strangers were part of our conversation or that we were sitting in a wedding reception, cluttered and claustrophobic.
This is a self-service outlet with the happiest staff I have seen in a café and because they look happy, they serve you better.
They have a unique menu, the list of items isn’t very long but it was very interesting to note the variety and mix of items. I mean you can find the regular Iced teas, Fruit Smoothies and Cold Coffee in every other café but how frequently do you come across a Green Tea frappe?
The Green Tea Frappe; I have never heard or tasted anything like that in any of the café I have been to in the past. Most of us have tried green tea but a Green Tea latte? Well, that’s something new and interesting. I had to try this one. Remember the happy staff I had told you about? They can really cheer you up. You should have seen the look on their faces the moment I said One Green Tea latte frappe please! They all seemed amused and curious. One of them asked me, ‘have you tried it before?’, ‘No’, I said ‘but I would love to’. ‘Mehendi Sarkha aahe!’ meaning it tastes like henna he smiled and exclaimed in marathi, still looking very amused. This made me very curious about the drink.
I sat by the glass window, soon the drink was ready! They did not shout out my name but just politely pointed put that my drink is ready. I faint, pale green coloured drink, it smelled nice and sweet, not like green tea. The moment I sipped it, the entire staff who had been observing me raised their eyebrows with a smile to ask me whether I liked it. I smiled back and as I swallowed my drink, there it was the strong smell and after taste of the green tea. Ohhh! So that’s what they were talking about , the ‘Mehendi Sarkha Taste’, not pleasant. I am a fan of green tea but this Green Tea latte Frappe was not pleasant. I swallowed it like Dhanashree and I would have swallowed glass of milk on school mornings.
It was an interesting drink, worth the try I would say but I don’t think I would like to order it again. I don’t know whether it was done to hide the after taste but the green tea frappe was too sweet.
Ramen. This is an oriental thick spicy noodle soup which I have seen in many movies and been very tempted to try, but I never could because it was never on the menu! Ramen, is not available in any of the cafés I have visited in Pune before. It was a very unique dish on the menu, reasonable priced for such a unique dish and it served as a mini meal. I have seen burgers, sandwiches and savoury rolls in cafés but this was something that sets Peter Donuts apart from the rest, you can only have ramen at Peter Donuts!
The Sushi item, Onigiri. This is an exclusive. Sushi is really scarce in Pune. You won’t even be able to try sushi food in a handful of places. In my knowledge, there is just one other place, a Japanese Restaurant on the other side of the city that serves sushi but no café in this city serves any type of sushi. The best part, you get to sample to have a sushi meal at a very reasonable price. This piece of onigiri will surely not burn a hole in your pocket. No need to fuel up your car Aundh residents, Sushi has come really close to you.
The Donuts. Don’t worry I have not forgotten about the Donuts, after all, the place is called Peter Donuts. Well, I will just have to say, there are Donuts and then there are Donuts that are above all other Donuts. You have to see them to believe it.
This outlet is very unique in many ways but it is the menu that really sets it apart from all others. I can’t wait to go back and try out the Ramen and the Sushi, may be another day, when I haven’t already had a heavy lunch.