It burns red — a jewel tucked away in an otherwise ordinary lane in Gulshan 2 — The Red Window may be dubbed as a patisserie-cum-café on the surface, but underneath a magnifying glass, you will discover it is much more precious than that.
From the hypnotising neon of the red sign at the entrance to the restaurant's signature push-through, double doors — simply walking into The Red Window is enchanting enough. That is, before you realise what a group of passionate and empowered women can achieve when they have set their hearts on something.
Shababa Ishmam and Sabrina Hasib are crowned as the founding duo of The Red Window and what started this rare journey was just an insatiable love for anything sweet!
"Shababa and I are both dessert lovers. It's incredible how just a bite of something sweet can bring people together. So, the both of us hatched the idea of introducing a place where you can enjoy whatever dessert you want and can have a cup of coffee to go with it," recalls Sabrina.
And with that simple vision, in 2016, Dhanmondi was graced with the ultimate dessert shop in town with the very first opening of The Red Window. By the end of 2020, a thriving restaurant chain was born with the café safely securing a second outlet under its belt. The Red Window now hopes to conquer Gulshan 2.
Revamped as the chicest patisserie you are likely to walk into, Gulshan's The Red Window strikes a vintage vibe that patrons of the first branch will find familiar. Its vibrant red doors and plush sofas will invite you to sit down and browse through their menu for luscious mousses, tarts, eclairs, and pastries. Every treat is a sight for sore eyes and will taste heavenly.
Besides their desserts, the café also prides itself on a delectable assortment of a la carte nibbles such as buffalo wings, soups, chicken, and sandwiches. Safe to call it versatile, the menu is an expert curation by Tilka Farzana and Tamzida Karim, both members of The Red Window's core team.
Synonymous with 'baking,' the pastry shop's cakes are the prized creations of Afroza Hossain, the brains behind The Red Window's designer cakes. That's right, 'designer!'
Fit to be housed in any edible museum, this patisserie's cakes are a bake above the rest! From delicate peonies and roses to elegant pearl details, from tangy lemon glazes to decadent chocolate slathers —The Red Window does not do anything catalogue.
The bakehouse is the one-stop answer for any and all sorts of cakes, let it be, tiered wedding cakes, stunning geode creations, gluttonous drip goodness or even themed cakes made out of fondant and cream. Whatever flavour you want will be concocted into the cake and whatever artifacts you would like to be worked into the design will be done exactly so, taking the definition of 'customisable cakes' to a whole new level!
If you have ever been guilty of salivating over the creations by The Red Window via ubiquitous Instagram and Facebook posts, you effectively have Dhaka's food blogger Shababa Suzana to blame. Responsible for the dessert shop's food promotions and styling, Shababa is the sixth addition to the Gulshan's The Red Window, with only Ismat Nazneen awaiting introduction with you.
Ensuring smooth sailing and calm waters, Ismat is responsible for navigating through the hefty job of managing the café. She rounds up the glorious team of The Red Window, easily making this all-girls group of creative masterminds the ultimate posterchild of #womenempowerment!
Coming back to management, what scores brownie points for The Red Window are their dedication to service and every first-time customer who returns for more pieces of the café.
"Service is very important to us and we want people to want to come back here. This is why our staff has been meticulously trained to cater to every one of a customer's needs; we also routinely take feedback from them and try to improve upon any suggestions," states Sabrina humbly.
She goes on to conclude, "We, at The Red Window, see the café as simply a lounge spot. If you are ever feeling low, or want to catch up with old friends, make new ones or just sit by yourself riveted by a book, we got you!
"You can lean back and just let the serenity of a steaming cup of coffee coupled with a mouth-watering dessert wash over you and leave behind a happy and satisfied soul."
Red with real love — this is exactly what makes The Red Window precious.
Photo courtesy: The Red Window
The Red Window is located at House# 16/B, Road# 112, Gulshan-2, Dhaka; # 01887-344444