Gourmet cuisine chain Café Pico at the Market City Mall, Kurla, Mumbai is owned by the Mumbai-based Nilgai Foods. The 1,500 sq.ft. outlet offers international cuisine in a vibrant ambience. With Gordon Ramsey protégé Nicole Gonsalves at the helm in the kitchen, Café Pico has witnessed a very enthusiastic response.
Speaking on the choice of name Pico, Arjun Gadkari, Co-founder and President, Nilgai Foods, says: “The idea was to choose something that is not fixed to any cuisine so that people don’t come here with a notion of what to expect. We are positioning ourselves as curators of fine gourmet flavours from around the world, we have hand-picked what we feel fits the bill. We don’t just want to serve flavours from headline food countries like Italy, China or Thailand, something that is done to death. We wish to serve edibles from say Africa, South America or Scandinavia. So we didn’t want to take the chance of using a name that comes with any preconceived notions. Also, we wanted a name that was simple, easy to pronounce or sms, so Pico it is.”
The design of Pico reflects a subtle blend of the traditional and contemporary atmosphere. Gadkari wanted the look and feel of the Pico outlet to be synonymous with the brand that aspires to create a high-end gourmet experience, drawing from a menu of international delicacies.
The kitchen is styled like an aquarium where customers can see the action live. Pico believes gourmet food need not be eaten in a stuffy, formal environment, as is often the case in India. Instead the company the created a friendly, accessible atmosphere through an interesting seating design. The Pico customer base consists of young and well-travelled metropolitan Indians interested in foreign cultures and cuisines and willing to experiment with their food choices. Open to trying something new, they are social and outgoing and prefer authentic and accessible yet affordable food.The food repertoire at Café Pico includes dishes like the Egyptian favourite Falafel, Nigerian Suya Chicken, Brazilian Kibe (fried meat balls), Korean bin dae duk (pancakes), Italian pumpkin Gnocchi, and so on.
Desserts hold such stellar dishes like Belgian Chocolate cake and Polish Citrus Cheesecake (sernik), made from farmers cheese (twarog) which is a fresh un-aged dry curd cheese. At Pico, this cheese is made in-house. The whey is then utilised for soups and polish breads. The Russian Gramma Cake, made from whole wheat flour with nuts, raisins and chocolate chips, is just perfect with a cup of tea or a scoop of ice cream.
The menu also holds salads, sandwiches, pastas, soups, mains and smoothies. There is also a retail section with a selection of packaged foods like pastas, sauces, breads, dips and other items.