Bangalore: A Cuppa at Koshy’s

Although known for its tea, India claims a distinct coffee culture, too, especially in Bangalore, the capital of the state of Karnataka, which produces 70 percent of the country’s beans. (Italian superstar Illy has begun sourcing these.) Café Coffee Day, the 620-branch Indian equivalent of Starbucks, got its start here in 1996, but since 1952 Bangaloreans have been nursing a love affair with—and a caffeine addiction at—the charming, centrally located Koshy’s Jewel Box and Parade Café. Brother-owners Prem and Santosh Koshy maintain the family legacy here, keeping the room, decor, menu, and even prices largely unchanged. In the original wood-pillared café, laptop-wielding IT execs, creative types, and locals sip the popular Karnataka cuppa, a strong, dark metal-filtered concoction taken with milk and sugar. And they snack on some 850 breakfast, lunch, and dinner treats, including the popular prawn biryani (reputed to be among the best in town), chicken patties, and fish and chips. In the evening diners switch to beer—Koshy’s has the widest selection in the city. 39 St. Marks Rd.; koshys.com.