Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Foodie Jaunts – Breakfast at Mercure Lavasa

If you want to unwind and just relax then Lavasa (situated in Pune district, Maharashtra) is the place to be in. Sometimes holidays too can tire you, thanks to all the sight seeing that you normally do in a tourist destination. Lavasa is one of those places where you just take in the scenic beauty all around you and just experience the place. What better way to begin your day than with a sumptuous breakfast. My brother Aroop Bose takes you on a Foodie Jaunt to Mercure's breakfast.

Mercure Lavasa – Where breakfast is a celebration

by Aroop Bose

When you are out on a holiday a hearty breakfast in the morning becomes very important; after a sumptuous breakfast you might want to skip lunch and save time. Mercure, situated in Lavasa near Pune is one hotel where every breakfast is not just a pleasure but is a celebration.

The buffet breakfast at Mercure, Lavasa is served in their restaurant called Celebration Café and a typical day’s buffet menu comprises: Roasted potatoes sprinkled with herbs and chilli flakes; roasted tomatoes, plain idlis, flavoured idlis, accompanying chutney and sambar,
uttapa, sabudana khichdi, medu vada, pav bhaji, steamed vegetables, baked beans, porridge, kesari kheer, pasteurized apple juice, fresh healthy vegetable juice, fresh sweet lime juice, spinach noodle soup, variety of breads, honey, butter, jam, three kinds of cheese – cheddar, elemental, Gouda; grapes, fruit cake, fresh healthy salad, salad dressings such as mayonnaise and yoghurt, fresh cut fruits, papaya smoothies, hot milk, cold milk, cornflakes, choco flakes, wheat flakes (on some days it is replaced with muesli), plain yoghurt, eggs to order, pork, ham, sausages, Danish pastries, croissant, muffins, biscuits and of course tea and coffee. They serve Darjeeling tea on request.

Three types of cheese

Some of the above items change on a day to day basis while others remain the same. For instance, instead of uttapa you could be served dosas on certain days, medu vada could be replaced with bondas or any other type of Indian style fritters or cocktail samosas; kesri kheer could be replaced with some other item made with milk; sometimes in place of sabudana khichdi you could be served upma. What I found unusual was the spinach noodle soup, till then I did not know of any hotel that served soup for breakfast. We had it on a wintery morning in January this year and it really felt good. In fact I had asked one of the chefs when we should have the soup, he said that since the weather is cold we should begin our day with a bowl of nice hot soup. The fruit cake that is served every single morning is divine; it is freshly baked in the hotel itself.
Everything that is there on the buffet tables is prepared with care and is tasty, however I can’t say the same about the eggs. How the eggs are prepared mainly depends on the chef who is in charge at that time; once I ordered fried eggs and the chef messed it up whereas on the following day another chef did a perfect job. Once when I ordered scrambled eggs, what came to my table did not resemble scrambled eggs at all.   
The restaurant staff is very caring and provides excellent service, however things can sometimes go for a toss when there is or are very large groups turning up for breakfast. In such a situation certain items get over and are not replenished for sometime or not at all; once I happened to see one gentleman who wanted to have cornflakes waiting endlessly for an empty bowl, finally he gave up and decided to have his cornflakes in a teacup. I observed that when there are large number of guests present in the restaurant, especially at the live kitchen (where eggs, ham, sausages, dosas are prepared and served), the staff members request guests to return to their tables and they themselves volunteer to serve the required dishes to them on the table, instead of the guest picking up his/her food from the live counter, which is what the guests are usually  expected to do. As the staff members are busy serving the guests,there is hardly anyone to check from time to time if the food items laid on the tables need to be replenished, this makes matters worse rather than solve any problem. 

There is one very delicious item that is seldom served, that is sabudana vada. This item is served sometimes only when guests are few in number; the reason for this is that the item is so delicious and popular that it gets over no sooner it is served, so it becomes practically impossible for the hotel to satisfy large number of guests. 

Overall I was very happy with the buffet breakfast here at Mercure Lavasa. The food is good and the staff is friendly, courteous and helpful. I feel like going there again.


  1. I had posted a comment here earlier, but it vanished. Just wanted to say thank you for the review - made my mouth water (though I agree, the idea of soup at breakfast is unusual).

    1. We used to just skip lunch after having a heavy breakfast here, it was fun.