Tantalizing My Taste Buds in Pondicherry

Two weeks ago, I decided to travel to a new destination and explore my own diverse nation a bit more. India has a lot to offer in terms of cultural diversity and epic destinations. I had limited time and budget and was looking for a quaint getaway – Pondicherry was the answer. Why Pondicherry ? Well, I am somewhat a beach fanatic – so as long as I am close to the sea and can enjoy peaceful evenings , fresh sea breeze and watch the waves, I am quite content. Plus, of course, to explore the French colonial town and tantalize my taste buds with scrumptious French cuisine – I was not disappointed.

white town pondicherry

Random Photo Session in White Town

Pondicherry’s White Town is a great place for long strolls, random photo sessions, cute & colorful buildings and top notch cafes and restaurants catering to French and Indian cuisine, majorly. When my friend and I explored White Town for the first time, we knew right away that we would end up spending all our time (next 3 days) and all our money (around $150) on binge eating in White Town – and we were damn right.

Here’s my take on the best cafes and restaurants from my vast (3 day) experience prowling in and around White Town in search of great food –

1. Opus 8 – The fact that it took us 1 hour to find this cafe has nothing to do with my greater appreciation of this place. Apparently the address given for the cafe on Google maps is incorrect so you just need to call them up and somehow find your way through numerous parallel (and weirdly lookalike) streets in Pondicherry. Somehow my navigation skills took a turn for the better (Which NEVER happened before) in Pondi and we were lucky that I somehow grew an inbuilt GPS to find my way to food (Human nature?). So with my impeccable and advanced GPS , we reached Opus 8 after 1 hour (actual distance from hotel was 10 minutes) and we were in for a surprise. It was the BEST ambiance I had ever seen – like ever – seriously. You will fall in love with this place as soon as you enter and you will never wanna go back. No kidding! It looks like a quaint french house from inside – so cozy and comfortable. Lovely books adorn the shelves, smiling french staff, comfy couches, great group of people to hang with AND amazing home cooked meals served with lip smacking desserts.

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We were in heaven !

After eating to our hearts desire (their awesome warm goat cheese salad with bacon), we lounged for a while before heading back home but not before we promised ourselves to come back – We went there 4 times since our first visit (That’s 4 times in a span of 2 days) – Now you know how much we loved this place.

Oh and did I mention they have a kick ass lounge rooftop bar that opens every alternate day (after 630 pm) with 1+1 mojitos on Wednesdays? Yumm!!! The decor , music , cocktails and the ever smiling staff make the lounge one of the BEST places to drink & meet people in Pondicherry.

Big thumbs up for Opus 8 – They made it to top of our list.

Warm goat cheese salad

Warm goat cheese salad – Yummmm

Opus 8 pondicherry

Chilling at Opus 8

Upstairs bar lounge at Opus 8

Upstairs bar lounge at Opus 8

Mojitos at opus

One + One Kiwi & Watermelon Mojitos at Opus

2. Cafe des Arts – It was love at first sight as soon as I stepping into Cafe des Arts, nestled in the heart of White Town. They offer a cute seating arrangement both indoors and outdoors. Cafe boasts of great decor with a trodden rickshaw and a lovely lotus pond in the garden. Colonial french architecture and amazing French cuisine makes it one of the best (and most popular) places to eat out in Pondicherry.

I fell in love with their salty crepes and full English breakfast. With a lot more on the menu to explore and so little time , its on my list if I ever make it to this lovely town again.

Entry at Cafe Des Arts

Entry at Cafe Des Arts

Outdoor seating and decor

Outdoor seating and decor

Salted ham and cheese crepe and breakfast

Salted ham and cheese crepe and breakfast

selfie at cafe des arts

Selfie time – this has nothing to do with food, sorry

3. Satsanga – This amazing (but very simple) outdoor dining French cuisine restaurant was budget friendly with great food and cheap beer. Simple plastic chairs and not much in terms of ambiance or decor to offer – apart from a tastefully done wall, I was a bit skeptical at first. As soon as I tasted the food , it was a different story altogether. We dined there twice and ordered Indian and Chinese (we were having French food all day so we wanted a change) – both were excellent choices.

Chicken tikka masala

Chicken tikka masala at Satsanga

decor at satsanga

Tastefully done wall

4. Baker’s Street – Big whoot whoot for Baker’s street. It puts a small dent in your wallet but hey – it is totally worth every penny. The food is filling and their palate is mouth watering. We got ahead of ourselves and over – ordered – which meant we had to sit there for 2  hours to eat/ digest our food – but we didn’t mind one bit. Try the beef burger , strawberry tart and the Caesar salad – you will be thanking me for this recommendation.

beef burger bakers street

Big ass Beef Burger at Bakers Street

Caesar Salad

Caesar Salad

Strawberry Tart

Strawberry Tart

5. L’e Space – This rooftop cafe is almost always full and it’s pretty clear why. Their cocktails are knock outs – we had two and we were flying to Disneyland in our dreams.  The food is amazing and you can eat to your heart’s fill in under $5 – Yup, that’s right! Plus the decor – rusty , artistic and inviting. Great for an evening out for dinner with friends.

At L'e Space

At L’e Space

6. Rendezvous Rooftop Restaurant –  This one is not for the penny pinchers, but if you are looking for a romantic dinner date (or in our case – great food with classy decor), then do check it out. Perched on a high roof, it gives you a nice city view. Blue neon lights and white minimalist furnishing make for sassy interiors. Food was great too – we  tried their chicken sizzler which was sizzling to say the least.

Sizzling sizzler at Rendezvous

Sizzling sizzler

Apart from these, other cafes/ pubs worth a visit are – The Road, LB2, Seagulls, DisDis & Co & Asian House.

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Pondicherry is a haven for food lovers. So, if you are a foodie, you know where to go next, right?

Have you been to Pondicherry ? Do share your favorite food joints in comments so I can jot them down for a future visit.

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  • Pragya Shah

    Wow…loved every bit what u wrote.. While reading felt that still in Pondicherry only… What a trip ..!!!! Never thought we will going to have soo much fun..!!! When ever thought about beaches only one destination come in mind that is our lovely Goa…!!!! But at at last we explore new beach destination !!! U can say more food destination… !!!! Now we need to ready for another destination..!!!

    • Yes babe – let’s chalk out a new adventure soon – I miss our foodgasms in Pondi.

  • I am a foodie, so I enjoyed reading this! OMG that salad… I need that salad… I love warm salads with poached eggs. Drooooolll….

    • Hahaha. Thanks Laura, yeah I wouldn’t mind grabbing another one right about now – if I could. Sigh! #neverendingtriphangover

  • MMM everything looks so great. I love food posts!

  • Paulina Hinz

    Gosh I’m so hungry after reading your post 🙂 I also spend most of my travel budget on food. I usually like to indulge in typical local cuisine, but not limiting myself to it;) I’d love to see more photos of the city itself, I heard it’s lovely. I used to live in India for half a year, but didn’t make it there

    • Hun don’t blame yourself – I made it there after 33 years (almost) of living in India 🙂 Yes, I will surely post more pictures of the city – Just stay tuned on the FB page – http://facebook.com/wanderwithjo

  • Anne Pel

    Seems like a really fun and jummy place to go!

  • PrincessInACaravan

    I am surprised, Pondicherry sounds totally different to how I imagined it to be! I want to go!

    • What/ how did you imagine Pondi to be ? Yup, you surely must visit.

  • Tricia

    I love revolving my vacations around food and restaurants. Food creates good memories.

  • Wee Gypsy Girl

    Wow, I would never have guessed this was in India! Another reason to visit again, so interesting. Thanks for this post! x

  • Kevin Wagar

    Wow, what a delicious range of foods and nothing like I would expect to be found in India. Delicious!

  • Tamara Wilcox

    You had me at warm goat cheese salad! All of it sounds amazing!

  • Looks delish!!!! Yum!

  • Girl Unspotted

    Everything looks delicious. I love the humble rustic appeal of the place as well, like a legitimate hole in the wall spot.

  • Lili’s travel plans

    Jummiiiieee this looks great!! I’m a vegetarian so no burgers and things like that for me, but I’d try all the meatless options in a second!!!

  • Holly

    I am glad your internal GPS kicked in. That breakfast looks so good!

  • The chicken tiki masala … yum! There is a lot of diversity for food options there, it all looks delicious and the town looks like a fun one to spend the afternoon with family.

  • Jazza Lesh Nomadasaurus

    Our mouths are watering. We can’t believe this is India. The different foods available is awesome. We are massive chicken tiki masala fans too. Never had a bad one. So delicious. Thanks for sharing.