In March, Lewis Cubitt Square in King’s Cross became the stage for our biggest Holi celebration yet! For the first time, we decided to take the fun outside and despite the slightly imperfect weather conditions (gale-force winds and pelting rain), it was totally, utterly brilliant.
We were joined by a raucous group of 500 party-wallas who unashamedly rolled up their sleeves and got their hands, faces, arms, legs, hair, clothes, EVERYTHING stuck into in a gloriously multi-coloured, powdery mess. We love that there are so many of you out there willing to go temporarily mad with us!
For a few short hours, King’s Cross was awash with bright colour and beaming faces. People of all ages, from all different walks of life came together to share in a moment of complete abandon. It was great to look around and feel such a sense of unity amongst a very mixed crowd of revellers – especially at the moment we released the gulal (coloured powder) and we watched everyone throw both caution and colour to the (howling) wind.
We love Holi. It’s great fun, of course, but for us, there is no greater pleasure in life than in creating the opportunity for many people to come together in this way. It’s true that for many of us, it’s not often that we spend time – much less play-time – in the company of people from mixed cultures and backgrounds. And Holi may have its roots in Hindu culture, but we see no reason not to share its joy with our friends of Christian, Muslim, Sikh, Buddhist, and all other faiths. For the same reasons, we celebrate Eid, Diwali, Raksha Bandhan and Christmas, and these celebrations are equally open to everyone.
We say it often, but for us, there are far too many barriers in this world; too many narrow domestic walls that divide too many of us too easily. It is only by sharing our cultures that we can understand, acknowledge and celebrate our differences, rather than allowing them to separate us. For us, this is more important than anything.
With each new café that we open, we write a story deeply rooted in Bombay history or culture. This story, known to us as the founding myth, informs all aspects of the restaurant’s design. We spend months researching the Bombay of the period and combing the city for the right furniture, both vintage and new. In a way, you walk across our thresholds into our stories.
Bedecked in their annual finery of baubles, tinsel and lights, our cafés are ready to receive you for your Christmas celebration. So too are our chefs, who have assembled a most excellent array of festive fare for your table.
Our soft launch will run from 27th November to 2.30pm on 5th December. And to express our gratitude for being among our first guests, all food can be enjoyed at 50% off across breakfast, lunch and dinner – yes, really.
Stop by any Bombay tapri (street stall), café, or home, and you will likely find yourself with a gently steaming glass of chai in hand. Before the invention of chai, Bombayites drank kadha, an ayurvedic remedy for coughs and colds made of boiled water and spices like cardamom, cloves and nutmeg. Eventually locals started adding tea leaves, milk, honey and sugar to their ‘kadha’. Chai was born.