Cheesiest Lasagna EVER: Johnson's Cafe, Manali

By 11:11 Thursday 22 June 2017 , , , , ,

I visited Manali after 18 years and it was nothing like I had remembered. The crowd is maddening, add to it the continuous smell of diesel and traffic jams at every couple of kilometres. I didn't mean to start this post like a rant but I was seriously disturbed to see this crazy tourist influx which is destroying one of the most serene and beloved hill stations of north India. But apart from these little spoilers, there were a couple of things that really made it all worth it. One of them was the Johnson's Cafe, which lies only a short walk away from the ever-buzzing mall road in Manali.

Since the moment my auto stopped at its front gate, I knew I was in for a lot of pretty sights. The outer lawn is full of gorgeous blooms and there's a lovely seating area for you to enjoy your food in the open. I'd have chosen to sit outside had it not been a super sunny day. I proceeded towards the equally peppy indoor space of the cafe and sat on one of the many comfy, wooden tables, the one that had the best lighting. The space is extremely arsty and well decorated, spacious and very well lit. It is also one of the most popular places in Manali to enjoy live gigs in the evening. 

Since I went to the cafe alone and wasn't super hungry, I could only try one dish from their very appetising menu. But I went for the one that could really help me conjure my feelings for the cafe- Spinach and Ricotta Lasagna with a cold coffee on the side. In my mind, I had decided that if they get this right, I would definitely come back for more. Much to my delight, it was one of the cheesiest and most fulfilling lasagna I've ever had. It's got a mix of  cheesy white sauce and a tangy tomato one an insane amount of ricotta in between the layers of pasta and spinach and a crisp, perfectly brown top layer of stringy mozzarella. It came with a fresh rocket leaf salad and a slice of buttered garlic bread which made everything better. 

The staff is very nice and polite but it did take my dish a little longer than expected to arrive. I really wish I could give you more insight on the food {I especially regret not eating dessert} but I can't wait to go back and add more to the review. 

Find more about Johnson's Cafe here and follow my everyday food and travel stories on Instagram.


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