Calm, content, friendly, smiling … this is the impression I carry of Mini and Rajendran, (or Raju as he prefers being called), after my half hour long chat with them. Owners of RR’s Blue Mount, arguably one of the most popular student haunts in Bangalore, they seem to have understood what brings them joy and make sure that they do exactly that every day. Which is cooking up delicious food and serving it at very affordable prices, with a smile, to the numerous students that flock to their modest looking outlet on Loafer Lane.
Don’t be fooled, as we almost were, by the unpretentious looking façade of RR’s. It looks like one of the many Bangalore bakeries from the outside. But one helping of Mini’s crazily popular Mexican Chat and you’ll realize that it is probably the only outlet of its kind in all of Bangalore.
Started sometime in the early nineties, (as they tell me), the joint is a true labour of love. She is Malayali but was born and brought up in Kolkata. He, also a Malayali, spent most of his growing years in Kerala. A deep desire to be entrepreneurs, coupled with Mini’s love for cooking and experimenting with food, found a perfect match when they opened RR’s, and there has been no looking back from then.
She is the Executive Chef who designs and executes all the unique recipes that the joint is wildly famous for. Her Mexican Chat is a combination of homemade crunchy nachos, layered with her version of refried beans and topped with cheese. It is the perfect dish to sate one’s appetite. Another innovation, Boat, has minced meat filled into a home baked pastry base and served with hot garlic bread. Yet another invention, Deltaaz, is a mini pizza made using a bread slice as a base. She also offers delectable, filling sandwiches and rolls. Also on offer are yummy sundaes such as Hot Chocolate Fudge, Choco Sin, Brownie Fudge.
All the cooking is done by Mini and Raju on their own, a tough task, given the sizable crowd that their joint attracts. Their focus on delivering perfect orders every time and the difficulty of handling workers, made them decide to manage it all between themselves, including all the preparation like making the nachos and baking the pastry bases, which Mini does every morning. They hardly take any vacations as being away from RR’s for long is not an option.
I am surprised when they tell me that they don’t like too much publicity. “It means lots of footfalls at the outlet and we find it difficult to manage all the orders. Times of India wrote about us and the next day was a riot” says Raju, almost complaining. It makes me smile at how they have it figured out so well for themselves. No plans to expand or open other outlets or even a bigger one, their philosophy is delightfully refreshing in a world that believes that bigger is better. “We will need another husband / wife if we have to think of another outlet” they joke. “We’re very happy here. We know the students, they know us. Some of our girls crave to have Mexican Chat when they are pregnant, and get their husbands to bring them here”, says Mini, with her warm, affable smile.
Thank you Mini and Raju for giving Bangalore RR’s Blue Mount. There’s a lot to be learnt from you and your journey. And I’m not referring only to the recipes. 😉