If you’re looking to spend a quiet evening either working or chilling, the two best options you can choose from are either heading to a nice air-conditioned café or going to the park or a garden to be amid nature and greenery. However, an increasing number of cafés in Chennai are asking the question: “Is it too much to ask for both?” Here are some of the best cafés in the city that provide great outdoor seating options so you can get the best of both worlds.
Wild Garden Cafe - Amethyst
Cafe, Italian, Contemporary, $$$
For a long time now, Amethyst Cafe in Royapettah has been at the top of the list of most popular cafés in town. And despite heavy competition from newer cafés popping up in the city, the Amethyst seems set to hold on to its position at the top, thanks in particular to its “Wild Garden Cafe.” What makes the Wild Garden Cafe so popular is that it is more of a garden with seats than a café with a garden. Frequented by celebrities and the who’s who of the city, this café is popular for its global menu and exquisite coffee and tea brews. And did we mention that it is pet-friendly?
Cafe, Fast Food, Contemporary, $$$
This amazing and small café is tucked away in the quiet and upscale neighborhood of Adyar and boasts of an outdoor area in the middle of a garden. While it is a favorite among locals and regulars, it is something of a hidden gem, so it also isn’t crowded so often. The café’s menu is best-known for its filter coffee and shakes and is reasonably priced. So if you’re looking for some peace and quiet and a break from the chaos of the urban jungle at a low-key café, this one is for you.
Cocktail Bar, Cafe, Contemporary, Barbeque, French, Indian, Italian, $$$
There is perhaps no café that boasts of a more romantic ambiance than Chennai’s Kipling Cafe. Located right along the scenic East Coast Road, the café is famous for its spectacular outdoor seating area with secluded tables under thatched roofs. Add to that the evening spray and breeze of the sea and you’ve got yourself a perfect evening. As for the menu, the café is popular for its grub and seafood options and also does pretty well on dessert, with great options such as the sugar-free pannacotta and mud cake. The café also has a full bar available in case you’re in the mood for some tipple!
Cafe, Contemporary, $$$
Located at the edge of the city in St. Thomas Mount, the fairly new House#22 Cafe has quickly become a preferred hangout spot for locals and also a well-known venue for events, such as book launches and literary talks. A major highlight of this café is its large outdoor seating area with well-spaced tables laid out amid a manicured garden and lawn. Plus, the café was built by renovating a colonial mansion and still retains its colonial-era charm. The café is also well-known for its pet-friendly nature.
First Cup Cafe
Cafe, Indian, Fast Food, Contemporary, $$$
Located right on Khader Nawaz Khan Road, one of Chennai’s top luxury retail streets, this quaint and cozy café is a favorite among the city’s young crowd. While its USP is its quirky seating arrangements, which include poolside furniture, Diwans, and even swings, the best attribute of First Cup Cafe is really its rooftop garden seating area, which provides a great view of Nungambakkam. The café is best known for its grub and Indian beverages, such as masala tea.
The Brew Room
Cafe, Contemporary, Italian, $$$
The Brew Room is among the best cafés in Chennai when it comes to coffee. Located inside the Savera Hotel in Mylapore, the best attribute of this cafe is its outdoor seating area, which features classy décor and cozy tables. Apart from serving dozens of varieties of coffee, ranging from Italian to Turkish, the café is also popular for its continental and Italian menu.
Cafe, Contemporary, Italian, $$$
Alwarpet’s Ashvita Bistro is counted among Chennai’s oldest and most-visited cafés. Started in 2002 by a group of young entrepreneurs, the café has since grown to become a popular brand in Chennai. It is best known for its youthful and arty ambience and boasts of great outdoor seating options. As for the menu, Ashvita’s Italian cuisine items and chocolate recipes come highly recommended.