UPDATE: BakesbyBella is now a full-fledged restaurant serving up desserts, coffee, and brunch at Alfred House Avenue. Stay tuned for the new review.
If you're looking for your just desserts, you've come to the right place. Possibly the prettiest merger in town, CocoBella is a little outlet opened up by the women behind Bakes by Bella and Coco Ceylon.
We don't feel as though the place needs much introduction. But if you're not in the loop, or worse, not on Instagram, here's a preview:
Ambience & Service
The tiny little shop is on the second floor of the Liberty Arcade, right smack in the middle of Colpetty, so it's very accessible. There isn't much to say about the ambience really, since it's so small. It's clean, bright, and the details are carefully attended to (for example, we loved the funkily coloured plates and polka dotted printed tissues). There's also a cute mural covering one wall of the eatery that brightens up the already upbeat area.
The only things more upbeat than the mural are the music (think: Kygo) and the owners themselves. We assume the music is craftily meant to get you in a wiggly mood so you forget the carbs you're ingesting. There's also a tiny seating area in case you don't feel like getting take away. It seats about 4 people in total.
The owners are usually on hand themselves, although Coco Ceylon gets cracking nice and early at 8:30 AM with all the healthier breakfast options like juices and chia bowls. Bakes by Bella usually starts up around 12:30, just in time for post-lunch sweet tooth cravings. They haven't quite locked down their closing times yet, since the shop is pretty much in beta testing right now. We'd suggest you call/text ahead.
We found the service engaging and friendly. The women are more than enthusiastic about their products and happy to help you choose what you'd like to order. They're also happy to pack up everything in cute packaging for you.
We've tried Bakes by Bella and Coco Ceylon when they were both little start-ups, so we're already pretty familiar with what they've got on offer. That didn't stop us from ordering a bunch of stuff to keep the scientific method alive. From Bella we ordered 3 mini jars; Brownies & Cream with Nutella at Rs. 450, S'mores at Rs. 400, and Red Velvet at Rs. 450. We also got one slice of Rainbow Cake at Rs. 450. From Coco we got two juices, a Summer Bliss at Rs. 280 and a Berry Blend at Rs. 420.
We loved the mini jars. They're a tad expensive, but they're actually rich and packed enough for two to share after a meal (as long as you're both polite). The Brownies & Cream is a Bella staple, and probably our office favourite too. It had that perfect gradiented texture, mixing crunchy brownie, soft and supple cream, and slightly tart strawberries.
The Red Velvet was a delight too. It was topped with a nice cream cheese frosting, and the flavour was rich and completely avoided that synthetic artificial flavouring taste you tend to notice with mass-made red velvets.
The S'mores was lovely, and we childishly loved watching the marshmellows being toasted with a blowtorch. The flavour of the chocolatey pudding was a bit too "deep cocoa" for some of our office, but I personally enjoyed that ever so slightly bitter chocolate flavour in juxtaposition to the sugary marshmallows. It was also on a base of cookie crumble which offset the puddingy texture well. Bella was considerate enough to tell us that this was the only potentially non-halal item on her menu because she didn't make the marshmallows herself and the gelatine used could have animal fat.
The Rainbow Cake was good, and we'd expect it to be a birthday favourite. We felt it could have done with a tad more frosting, but the flavour itself was nice, straightforward vanilla. The only problem with this cake is that it looked so pretty that the taste could never match up, and it felt wasteful to even ingest anything that aesthetically perfect.
The Coco Ceylon juices served as healthy palate cleansers and were superbly fresh and refreshing. The Berry Blend was kind of expensive at Rs. 420 for a smoothie, but raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and yogurt don't come cheap so it's understandable. It was cold and blended well, and we could see it being a great morning drink.
The Summer Bliss was actually more of a personal favourite for me, because it was lighter and tasted more local, and I could detect a lot of passionfruit. We'd definitely recommend stopping by for a healthy morning fix if you're in the area.
We had a great experience, and are huge fans of the cute packaging and quality produce. Their menu isn't completely static right now, so you ought to stop by a couple of times and experiment with what they're rustled up for the day. Of course, you can still order in advance if you require something in particular.
Enjoy your sugar rush! We assume you'll be walking out of the shop like