When in Mumbai: Slurps, Sweets, and Savories at Subko
Need some premium quality Indian specialty coffee? Want to know what’s the hype about Subko? Here’s all you need to know.
Our reviews are research-based, and all trials and testings are conducted in-house over days and weeks. We have a strict no-free-sample policy to ensure our reviews are fair and impartial.
‘Am I in NYC or Mumbai?’ I thought when I was seated in a cozy corner of this warm and aesthetic cafe. To add to the cozy vibe, there was Laila, Subko’s adorable feline.
What sets Subko apart from other cafes/breweries is their contemporary take on coffee. From the classic cappuccino to an exquisite cold brew, from the undebatable croissant to their Keema Pop Tart, here is all I tried, loved, liked, and would not recommend.
Table of Contents
Steaming hot or on the rocks, black or with milk, animal milk or plant-based milk, there’s something for everyone.
1. Hot Beverages
1. Hot SIF (South Indian Filter Coffee)
It’s not just the rich flavor of coffee and chicory, it’s also about the way they serve this. Like most beverages, on a wooden board, the coffee is served in a traditional cup and saucer made of bronze.
With just the right sweetness, this delicate brew had a clean taste. Soft but complex, the acid level made this Filter Coffee a dream to drink.
PS- do you know why Filter Coffee is poured back and forth between the cup and saucer? It is to cool the beverage and also create a delicious layer of froth.
2. Vegan Pistachio M*lk Flat White
Subko holds pride in its extensive vegan menu. Their Vegan Pistachio M*lk Flat White is prepared with premium-quality pistachios. After a word with Savio, our barista, we learnt Subko uses Iranian pistachios. These are blanched, hand-peeled and sorted, followed by blending and straining the following day.
Flat white is usually loved for the thick, velvety mouthfeel it leaves. Subko’s vegan-friendly take on this was a mild but rich beverage that had a distinctive flavor profile. It had a pale green, light-matcha hue.
2. Dusk Cold Brew
The Dusk Cold Brew is from Subko’s Canned and Bottled Brews line. These nanobatch, limited edition brews are rotational.
Offered in a premium-looking glass bottle, the Dusk Cold Brew had flavor notes of a medium-dark roast. As mentioned in the description, we could taste some cotton candy-like sweetness with of a citrusy kick of lemonade.
This is to be paired with a hearty snack like PB&J swookie or the Kashmiri Walnut Sea Salt Choc Chip cookie.
B. Baked Goods
Need something to nibble on? Subko’s got you covered.
1. Cold Brew Chocolate Hazelnut Tart
If you thought Mason & Co.’s chocolate could not taste better, Subko’s chocolate tart is here to change your mind. This is a gluten-free preparation which has a decadent chocolate filling made with 70% Mason & Co. chocolate. This was generously topped with some sweetened cacao nibs and toasted hazelnuts. Not only did the toppings elevate the texture, but also the appearance.
An iced espresso or long black would pair beautifully.
2. Notella Stuffed Cruffin
Think this is a spelling error? Nope, Notella is Subko’s home-crafted version of the chocolate spread.
Prepared with Subko’s croissant dough, this stuffed cruffin is shaped like a muffin, hence the name. It’s got a salted cream topping, crushed hazelnut bits, and a hearty Notella filling.
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3. Infinity Brownie
It was hard for us to believe this brownie is gluten-free. After some questioning, we were made aware of the preparation. Single origin chocolate has been used (sourced from Idukki) and the gluten-free flour is made with ground green coffee beans.
This had a rich mouthfeel and tasted heavenly. What set it apart was the Kokum syrup topping this had. This was a combination we didn’t know we needed until we tried this.
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1. The Veggie Stack
This is easily one of our top favs from Subko’s ‘That’s Soooo Vegan’ range. Prepared with Subko’s housemade sourdough as the base, this Veggie Stack has a beautifully spiced tomato chutney with South Indian flavors of mustard seeds, curry leaves, red chillies. The Stack is filled with an oven-roasted Terrine of eggplant, green, and yellow zucchini. There’s also caramalised onions, coleslaw made using purple cabbage. This is layered with a creamy cashew and bell pepper cream.
Each bite was a burst of flavors, but the elements added a variety of textures.
The caramalised onions added a soft crunch and some sweetness, and the cashew cream made this super rich.
2. Keema Pop Tart
A savory pop tart? Subko’s take on this typically sweet snack is a must-try. The mutton kheema filling is housemade, inspired by the streets of Old Delhi. The light and flaky puff pairs well with the chewy mutton filling. This preparation is topped with a layer of fresh, creamy yogurt, some pickled onions, and a housemade red chilli jam.
Sweet, savory, spicy, there’s a bit of everything. Plus, because most components are prepared in-house, this tasted super fresh.
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Subko PAN India
Subko offers variants of freshly roasted coffee beans that can be ground and brewed using a range of equipment/methods. They also explain the acidity levels, coffee body, and how sweet the bean naturally is.
There are also specialty Arabica microlots that can be ordered. Coffee brewing equipment, tote bags are other items available in the ‘Dukaan’ section offline and online.
Did you know? Subko (the Mary Lodge, Bandra bakehouse) opened exactly three days before the lockdown was declared in our country.
One of coziest corners this winter, Subko is an ambitious space that offers an unexpected take on an everyday commodity like coffee. Though the pricing may seem steep, the quality speaks for it, without a doubt. Safe to say, Subko is truly a speciality coffee in the making that coffee aficionados must look out for.