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#JOM! EAT: One unfussy and health-conscious Geographer

New Straits Times logo New Straits Times 18/9/2020 Hanim Mohd
a dining room table in front of a window: The warm inviting ambience. © Provided by New Straits Times The warm inviting ambience.

AT dusk, its bright yellow corner-lot building that sits at a corner of a T junction along Jalan Hang Jebat a.k.a Jonker Street in the heart of Melaka's historic enclave, stands out against the twilight sky.

Inside, the Geographer Cafe exudes a laid back and unfussy ambience with warm lighting and soothing jazz music playing in the background.

There's only a handful of patrons sitting separately apart from each other.

As part of the new-norm standard operating procedures (SOPs), my friend and I duly register ourselves via the MySejahtera app and take our temperature.

Since a reservation has been made for us, we're ushered to our table where our guide Shaukani Abbas who will be taking us for the Melaka After Dark: A Journey of Discovery Tour, has already been waiting for us.

While walking us in a friendly staff, Khairul tells us that before the Movement Control Order (MCO), the cafe had a live band playing on certain days in the week, but had to be stopped due to the Covid 19 pandemic.

"But we plan to revive it," he says.

Since we're going for a two-hour walking tour, we want to eat light.

And we've come to the right place as Geographers Cafe offers many choices of light dishes, on top of its heavy mains. And extensive vegetarian dishes too!

NO RED MEAT

As we browse through the menu, we discover that there's not a single red meat dish in it. Good news for health enthusiasts!

We're told that the owner is a vegetarian and he personally came up with most of the vegetarian dishes himself.

This pub-restaurant serves a wide choice of both Asian and Western cuisines that leave us spoil for choice. We make a wise decision to share.

For appetisers, we go with Shaukani's recommendation - Fresh Vege Roll, Vietnamese vegetarian rolls served with a special chilli sauce for dipping.

It's very refreshing - the fresh and crisp salad rolled in light Vietnamese rice paper. The sweet chilli sauce gives it a 'kick'!

For mains, we choose Nasi Impian which comes with two sticks of vegetarian satay. Nasi Impian is actually brown rice fried with house-secret pesto and a handful of kangkung and chilli. The brown rice is fragrant and soft which at first I thought was Nasi Lemak.

The vegetarian satay is actually chunks of lightly battered deep fried mushrooms on a skewer.

It comes with a beautiful thick peanut sauce which is not too spicy and not too overwhelmingly sweet.

We also order Curry Ramen, another vegetarian dish. The curry reminds us of 'Sarawak Laksa'. The ramen is best savoured immediately when it hits the table. It's an acquired taste but we manage to wipe clean the bowl nonetheless.

Khairul says all the dishes served in Geographer Cafe are MSG free.

PIZZA, COFFEE AND SUCH

We notice that the menu also has an impressive array of pizzas.

Khairul says that the pizzas are freshly made and convinces us to try their Margarita Pizza, a thin crust tomato-based pizza topped with cheese and basil.

The freshly baked pizza arrives with just the right amount of home-made tomato sauce and cheese with fresh basil leaves.

Both my friends and I agree that it is the best dish of the night.

To wash down our meal, I go for Calamansi Asam Boi, an excellent choice to my liking. My friend, a coffee connoisseur, says her cafe latte is good and her verdict is proven with my long black coffee that I have to sum up our meal.

We don't have time or room in our stomach to try their desserts but we can't keep our eyes off the cakes on display! Perhaps another time.

FAST FACTS

GEOGRAPHER CAFE

83, Jalan Hang Jebat, 75200 Melaka

TEL 06-281 6813

WEBSITE geocafe@geographer.com.my

HOURS Hours or services may differ. Closes at midnight.

EAT A plethora of Asian and Western cuisines. Many choices of Vegetarian dishes.

MUST TRY Margarita Pizza

PAY From RM9-RM19 for mains

MOOD Cosy and laid back.

SERVICE Staff are attentive and friendly

I SAY Give it a try

© New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd

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