Calanthe Art Cafe Malacca Reviews
Jalan Hang Kasturi Branch Sep 28, 2012
This caught my eye whilst on a walkabout in Malacca, either just in or near the Chinatown district, along Jalan Hang Kasturia with Art shop next door, this great cafe serves English brekkies, and Malay style soups and food, majoring on their coffees for any addict. I had a dumpling soup which was large, and usual coke and paid around RM9. It also offers free wifi. Service was super, with smiles and attention to clearing away only when you had clearly finished.
I enjoyed my unhurried and unrushed, cool stay in this cafe for the hottest part of the day. Definitely worth a visit!
Update; We actually went on two further occassions for dinner, note they are closed on Friday's. The main courses we ordered were cooked beautifully and presented with care and very reasonable prices. I also had a couple of "mocktails" again these were thoughtfully described in the menu making it easier to choose without bothering the staff. Altogether a very very good place to go!
Part of the The Big Year Out travel blog
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Good Local and Western Faire and famous for its Coffee Sep 06, 2011
Stepping into Calanthe, is an experience in itself. Its decor and ambiance is just so welcoming coupled with the great attitude of the staff.
Food is good, their local food like their award winning Laksa and Chicken Rendang with Rice and so forth that they've been featured in various magazines and food reviews by the local newspapers.
With a keen interest in supporting local artists, they've also a wall featuring paintings available for purchase and some handmade jewelry as well. In fact, the jewelry has proven so popular, that its now its own standalone outlet nearby called Joe's Designs (will review that on my next trip there)
Proving to be popular with both locals and tourists alike, Calanthe which is named after an Orchid species, has even been a choice venue for weddings, fashion and various photoshoots as well due to the eclectic and unique features of its decor
Part of the Malacca travel blog
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Where Art and Coffee Collide Nov 21, 2007
Forget Starbucks. Forget Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf. When In Melaka, Calanthe Art Cafe is the place to be.
Calanthe Art Cafe has two shops in Melaka: the modern-yet-old-fashioned main shop along Jalan Hang Kasturi, which has an art gallery beside it; and the more mainstream branch at the Dataran Pahlawan Megamall.
It was the Jonker shop that got me curious, but was at the mall that I got to taste their concoctions.
It was raining that afternoon when we were at the mall. Rather than just window shop, I suggested to my mom and aunt that we just have coffee while we wait for the rain to stop.
I was enticed to have coffee at Calanthe because it has this really cool outdoor seating adorned with lots of greens. Well, actually it was ALL OUTDOOR. The shop is located outside the mall (located near the entrance opposite the other mall, Mahkota Parade). What I meant by outdoor is that, it doesn't have any ceiling or shade as compared to the "indoor" area.
Since it was raining, we had no choice but to stay where we were kept dry. The quaint cafe has this big shelf in the middle with a display of a variety of sculptures. Behind it are more seating where one can just sit back and admire the art works hanging on the wall. There's relaxing zen music playing in the background which makes for a casually elegant atmosphere - and a perfect coffee experience.
Calanthe Art Cafe's claim is they serve ONLY the best coffee from each of Malaysia's 13 States. Choosing from the menu alone can be quite time consuming. Everything looks so promising! Eventually, my mom decided on the white coffee from Perak, my aunt had Pink Lady, while I gave the Honey Coffee (and Laksa) a try.
Now here's the catch. Malaysian grown coffee (aka Local Coffee) is Liberica, hence inferior to Arabica and Robusta in terms of quality and flavour. But what makes Calanthe's coffee excellent? The answer lies in the different roasting techniques of the beans. Here is how the "MALAYSIA 13 STATES' COFFEE" are prepared:
*The coffee from SARAWAK is 50% robusta and 50% sugar, wheat and margarine;
*PERAK's White Coffee is 100% Liberica roasted only with margarine, as opposed to the SELANGOR beans which is roasted with margarine and sugar making it darker; JOHOR coffee also uses 100% Liberica but without sugar nor margarine.
*The TERRANGANU coffee is processed by using a mixture of 70% Liberica and 30% Arabica;
*The KELANTANese beans are roasted over woodfire;
*PAHANG's coffee is made from 100% Indonesian Robusta;
*N. SEMBILAN coffee uses a mixture of Liberica and Robusta;
*PERLIS coffee beans with 5 herbs for strength and freshness;
*KEDAH's robusta beans are lightly roasted;
*PENANG uses Superb black robusta beans
*SABAH has 76% coffee beans and 24% of margarine, sugar and salt.
*MELAKA's very own is roasted with 70% coffee beans and 30% sugar, salt and margarine.
Having said that, The White Coffee that my mom had is smooth and had a very good whiff. The Pink Lady (that's good ol' Strawberry Shake for you!) is one of the best milkshakes i've had in recent memory. The Honey Coffee? Let's just say that since then I've started pouring honey on my coffee. And before i forget about the Nyonya Laksa... Delicious!
Now, why would you go to Calanthe Art Cafe that uses the less flavourful Liberica beans? The Answer is simple enough. It is indigenous to Melaka. Starbucks are in every corner around the world. Calanthe can ONLY be found in this historical city.
Besides, if you ask me, I was never a big fan of the 100%-Arabica-using-Starbucks in the first place. It's quite ironic that the one who uses the best beans has the worst-tasting coffee. Having said that, real coffee lovers and experts have something to be thankful to Starbucks for: without IT one can never discover good coffee elsewhere.