Monday, October 03, 2005

fabulous restaurants in india

oct 3

completely out of the blue, i have been thinking of good restaurants. i'd like some suggestions from people. i am a non-meat-eater, but i eat fish, so i am personally partial to fish places, especially those with spicy food.

has any of you been to the spice route at the imperial hotel in delhi? i was there perhaps 3 years ago, and the menu was a stunning mix of kerala, thai and indonesian dishes. so was the decor: kerala-style murals, thai woodwork, and balinese objets d'art.

the food was pretty impressive and the overall effect, even if it was a little dimly lit, quite good.

although i havent been there in some years, i used to find the karavalli at the taj gateway in bangalore to be really excellent for coastal (mangalorean mostly with some kerala) food.

some of the regional cuisines are getting more airplay these days in india, compared to the two kinds of indian restaurants that we find in the us:

a. north indian: punjabi mostly
b. south indian: udipi-style

andhra, chettinad, kerala restaurants are the ones that i have seen becoming more and more popular in the south. i have also seen a proliferation of gujarati restaurants. i wonder how things are in the north.

also, there has been a general explosion in hotel-building all over the country, i guess. especially after arun shourie sold off all those white elephant ashoka hotels. they are doing much better these days. the one at kovalam, trivandrum, is now a leela after having been a le meridien for a while. much improved service: not so many surly waiters.



13 comments:

Randhir said...

Rajeev: If you love seafood, try out seafood cooked Goan or Konkan style. It's awesome (at least IMHO); in Mumabi you can try out Gajali at Ville Parle or Saiba at Bandra or Gomantak in Borivili.

Midday (mid-afternoon Mumbai daily) periodically publishes a list of top restaurants in Mumbai with one chef's choice recepie. Not sure if they have this online.

Avinash said...

Try Hyd Mahal on Brigade Road in Bangalore. It may not be as nice as the one in Delhi that you describe in terms of decor, but the food certainly is excellent.

Another cuisine to try in Karnataka is the Bijapuri cuisine. Some of the restaurants in the Kamat chain in Karanataka serve Bijapuri meals. I can't remember the name of this restaurant, but it's located not very far from the bus stand in Bangalore. It's a Kamat of some sort, but serves Bijapuri meals only. Again, not the best place in terms of decor, but the food makes up for the lack of decor and style.

kaunteya said...

Since i am from Maharashtra i can suggest you a few from this region. If you are in Bombay and love sea food, Mahesh Lunch Home is a must visit. Do not go my the name. It is as plush as it gets. And apparently the food is grand. Since i am a veggie myself this recommendation comes from my wife who enjoys fish and prawns.

If you like spicey food and find yourself in Pune, do not forget to visit "Mathura" restaurant on Deccan Gymkhana. Thats the best maharshtrian food i ever had.

If you go further north in Nagpur, there's a chain of shady joints called "Savji". The food is so hot (or spicy) that you might need an additional kerchief for self-defense :-)

Niketan said...

A guide to some eating places in Bombay:
If you like Gujarati food, try the following place in Bombay
Chetana - Kalaghoda- Bonus for this is it is next to the Jehangir Art gallery and Rhythm House and walking distance from Strand Book Stall. 2 excellent haunts for book and music lovers

Udipi REstaurants
For a good lunch, try Ram Nayaks next to Matunga station (Central).For Udipi snacks try the Ram Nayaks branch at Kings Circle. Remember to pick up the potato wafers.It is simply awesome.(At least until 3 years back. Have not tried it for the last 3 years)
For Pav Bhaji, there is one at Worli- cannot recall the name. Could somebody help?
Cannon at VT used to be good, but have not been there for some time.
I could give some information on suburban restaurants later.
Samosas- Guru Kripa

Niketan said...

Avinash
Are you referring to Kamat Yatri Niwas. The food is excellent - especially the breakfast spread- even though the decor is average.

Sorry the last portion of my post was incomplete. For samosas and chaat in Bombay, Guru Kripa at Sion is a must. The kulfi there is excellent.

KapiDhwaja said...

Hey Guys,
Rajeev may not even be going to Bombay or elsewhere in Maharashtra.

Gameboys said...

Rajeev, not sure if you're going to a specific part of India or if this is just out of curiosity, but since I'm familiar with places in Kolkata, I'll throw in my two bits.

If at all you are in Kolkata, do try Charnock City - they serve very good Bengali food. I used to be a vegetarian in my Kolkata days, so I can tell you the traditional vegetarian dishes are fabulous - Mochar Ghonto and Enchor (jackfruit) Kalia, for example. And my friends always rated traditional Bengali fish preparations highly.
- NK

Avinash said...

Niketan,
I think that's what the place is called - Kamat Yatri Niwas. I've never had breakfast there, but the Bijapuri dinners are excellent. I think there's a lot of Hyderabadi influence in Bijapuri food.

san said...

I rather liked these designs for Dutch flood-resistant houses:

http://www.we-make-money-not-art.com/archives/007141.php

Basically, the houses have cellars which are like boat-hulls, capable of buoyantly floating the entire house upwards in flood conditions. The houses are laterally held in place by steel posts along which they slide up during a flood.

This kind of clever design could make flood-prone areas much more tolerable, and their inhabitants much more resilient to flood damage. Why don't Indians think of this kind of stuff? It's heartbreaking to see impoverished victims of flood disasters in India wallowing in misery and not knowing what to do.

san said...

Interesting anti-sniper robot innovation:

http://www.boston.com/business/technology/articles/2005/10/04/robotic_vacuum_maker_bu_team_up_on_antisniper_device/

A particularly useful idea for anti-insurgency situations.

san said...

LoL, Google is referring to Taiwan as a province of China, which has the little island people upset:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/10/04/taiwan_google_earth/

So how do they show Sikkim or Arunachal Pradesh, anyway? What about Kashmir?

san said...

Aligarh Muslim University has been stripped of its minority status by the court:

http://www.dailypioneer.com/indexn12.asp?main_variable=front%5Fpage&file_name=story3%2Etxt&counter_img=3

I'm sure the Congress govt will have a fit.

What is suddenly motivating this pleasant bout of judicial activism, anyway?

nizhal yoddha said...

thanks for the recommendations, folks.

i have found benjarong thai in chennai to be quite good. but they have a startling drink called 'clitoria' :-)

in bangalore an italian place called sunny's was good some years ago. the thai place at the taj west end was also good.

in mumbai, i have to try out the places you guys suggested. someone recommended a place called trishna as a really fancy joint.