A restaurant deeply connected to the lost Irani cafes and bistros in Colaba, Mumbai.
With Colaba Junction opening its doors at 801 Bay Street, Toronto – there is now a splendid option to breaking the monotony of food court meals for the daily office goers in Toronto’s financial district.
And some Bombay blues.
The old Irani cafes of Bombay have almost all disappeared – their faded elegance once attracting all measure of Indian life.
Slowly turning ceiling fans breathed life into the students, lawyers, writers, taxi-wallas and businessmen who sipped tea or dined next to walls adorned with sepia-toned family portraits.
Opened early last century by immigrants from Iran, there were almost four hundred cafes at their peak in the 1960s. Now, fewer than thirty remain.
Colaba Junction’s vision is to reintroduce Canadian Indian’s to the charm and rustic grace of these cafes, brining the experience to a new audience.
“I used to think that the Indian restaurant at the end of my road was my perfect partner. I’ve been so loyal to it over the years that at one point I just ate “in a heartbeat” and paid at the end of the month. But like a marriage that’s lost some of its excitement, recently I’ve been finding the tarka dal a bit, well, lacklustre. I’ve tried branching out from my usual order to spice things up, but I think we need a break.”
“I may have found a new love in Colaba Junction, a “Street Kitchen from Mumbai” in downtown Toronto. It may not have the virtue of being on anyone’s doorstep, much less mine, but it’s definitely worth cheating on your regular with.”
“Open now, Colaba Junction has been created to bring a taste of the all-day street food of India that fuels the bustling city to Toronto. It’s like a typical Indian railway canteen – with Indian labels. Plain Butcher tables and chairs are neatly arranged, while across the back wall, and view into the kitchen reveal finely choreographed activity.”
The history of Colaba is deep rooted in the Koli
(the native fishermen) community of Mumbai, India
along with Portuguese and Anglo-Indian settlements.
Thus, the menu at Colaba is inspired from the confluence of cultures as experienced in today’s chic Colaba, Mumbai.Read our story