'German Bakery' has become a brand across India, with various restaurants set up with the same name across locations like Pune, Lonavala, Leh, Kasol. But this doesn't mean that they are a chain of restaurants. Each German Bakery stands out from the other and each has something unique to offer.
The German Bakery in Anjuna was set up by Klaus 'Woody Pumpernickel' Gutzeit in the late 1970s or early 1980s after noticing the locals and tourists craved good bread.
Since it was set up in the second half of the 20th century, the design of the restaurant is heavily influenced by the bohemian style. As soon as you enter, you are greeted by a statue of Buddha sitting beside a pond on your right and a shrine of Ganesha on the left.
The seating area is vast with floor seating on one side and bamboo chairs on the other. The design of the cafe also indicates proximity to Hindu mythology with each floor-seating booth having a painting of Hindu gods and goddesses and another shrine of Shiva under a tree which they carefully built the cafe around.
At night, the lanterns hanging above each table is lit to amplify the bohemian ambience that flows through the cafe.
Termed by the management as a 'health food garden restaurant', the bakery has a multitude of options for vegetarians, vegans and non-vegetarians alike.
If you are a weary traveller who stumbled upon the path to the cafe, you will find that the energy shots or elixirs that are served are the cure to your fatigue.
The menu is a page-turner that will have you spending the first couple of minutes of your arrival at the cafe deciding what to order. After a serious endeavour through the menu, I decided to order a Grilled Teriyaki Tuna Steak which comes with a perfectly-cooked, sliced tuna steak with steamed veggies and mashed potato on the side. Having had only chicken and beef steak till now, I was apprehensive about venturing out of my comfort zone. But I wasn't disappointed as the tuna steak gave me a new taste and craving for seafood items.
I was surprised to find an Indian food category in the menu with options such as puri bhaji, rajma and palak paneer available. The main course offers food like pasta, burgers etc for non-vegetarians, vegetarians and vegans. You can't help but admire the amount of thought that went behind the designing of the menu when you notice the 'Kids Entry' section which is for the little ones who would struggle to finish a portion prepared for an adult.
The vibe of the cafe suggests that it is not a place to eat and leave, rather it is something to be experienced. On one side, you would find people tapping away on their laptops while sipping on their chamomile tea or munching on a lemon cake. Elsewhere, you would spot a bookworm cosily curled up on the floor-seating while reading a book which they may have borrowed from the small library kept at the reception.
Before you decide to leave, you should visit the bakery, since that is where it all started, next to the reception and try the cookies, cakes or the pumpernickel bread-- a speciality of Gutzeit's that earned him the nickname 'Woody Pumpernickel'.
Best time to go: Literally anytime!
Where to find: Market Road,Grand Peddem, Monteiro Vaddo, Anjuna (You would still take a wrong turn or two before getting there.)
Approx. cost: Rs 1000 for two