Saturday, June 20, 2015

Woodlands in Narada Gnana Sabha

Been a very long time since I had food outside to review. A friend who had flown in from abroad wanted to catch up and I defintely wanted something light. We decided for dinner which lead us to Woodlands restaurant inside Narada Gnana Sabha on TTK Road. This one is an open air restaurant and if you are lucky with a pleasant weather, this could well be one of your best evenings. Reminded me of the woodlands drive in restaurant except that this had no car service. There is also no reservation of tables here. The tables here are shared with other patrons and you can carry on any conversation without bothering about who is sitting next to you. The place is very accessible by differently abled and elders alike as it is situated next to the parking lot in the Ground floor.

We landed up on a Sunday evening at 7:30 PM and the tables were full. The menu written on a Sign board above showed it was a simple South Indian fare of Dosa's,upumas, Idlis, Chapathis and can be washed down with Badam Kheer, Grape Juice or Lemon juice.

We settled down for a Simple Sambar vada and Masala Dosai. The sambar vada was piping hot and we quite enjoyed the taste of it. Not too much of masala and the spices were just about right. There were two vadas instead of one that I see in some of the hotels. The Masala Dosai was quite good too and very tasty. The plates were wiped clean.

We had checked for Lemon juice, it wasnt available and we settled for Badam Kheer. Badam Kheer had just the right amount of sweetness and we gulped it down in no time.

The bill was a total of Rs 130 inclusive of taxes. I am definitely going back to this place again and again. No pictures this time but definitely make up for it next time :)

My Ratings

Food : 4/5

Ambiance : 4/5

Accessibility : 4/5The place is open only in the evenings and the crowd attracted is not just from the Sabha but 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Krishnavilasam- Home food at a price

A get together by mates of a Facebook group made me go this beautiful restaurant. When you step in to Krishnavillasam situated in Haddows Road, Nungambakkam it is a different world all together. Situated  on the main road with near by government offices and a huge corporate nearby, the positioning of the restaurant posh area seems to be a great idea.

The ambience is good. The restaurant is actually on the second and the third floor. There is a lift and was so happy to see a wheelchair there for the elderly and the differently abled. I was After waiting for an hour and half and trying to decide where to get us seated, we finally found ourselves in the Second floor overlooking the main road. A tad disappointed about not being served even water until 10 mins after we got seated.

We had a special menu with 20 dishes and it was an experience to share. Am going to avoid writing much about the blah blah and get down to the dishes right away.

The welcome drink was just another drink, added sugar and watered down heavily . Nothing much to comment about it. It would have been nice if we had a starter or two given along with the welcome drink.

Fried Appalam or Pappad was served as a appetiser or whatever category it fits. Personally speaking its a no go for me as it was too salty. Not my way to start off a meal.

Nice mix of spices and well cooked paneer which was soft and yum. Paneer being a vegetarian's delight. I loved the taste of it. The first batch of it was good but the second serving on, it became very chewy.

Baby Corn cut into long strips , steamed and fried with Palak (Spinach ) and spices. Was tasty and did not get soggy till the end. Palak Vepudu

Paruppu Vada or Vada made with lentils. Lovely to taste and not oily. The vada however felt very out of place in the menu. May be it was to give a south indian twist to the dish but it definitely did not blend in with the other starters.

The Sambar rice was good and I was surprised with lil strips of raw mango in the dish. Tasted much like home made sambar rice with not much masalas.

The sole accompaniment to the Sambar rice was this mash of Potato and Yam fry. Though yam and potato combination are not exactly my favortie, it did taste good. I did not however go for a second helping of either the Sambar rice or the accompaniment

We had an avial and a eruseri as the other two dishes. Aviyal was good while Eruseri tasted like an authentic home made preparation.

The Morkozhambu felt a lil out of place but it tasted nice.  The dessert was a Chinthamani halwa but tasted more like a regular halwa that you have in South India weddings.

I left the halwa at my table to do some socializing and by the time I got back to my dessert, I had to use all my energy to separate my fork and the halwa. It took me about a minute to take the halwa out of the cup to just gulp it down without even relishing it.

To summarize, the food is as good as home food and delicious. On the flip side, would I even go to a restaurant and pay my pocket for home food however delicious it may be when I can get the same thing at home. To add on, the service was terrible. The waiters were running around not knowing what to do next. I had to ask for water to be served thrice before I was served. The so called special menu did not gel well together and left much to be desired.

Krishnavillasam- Not quire what I expected it to be. Hoping the next time around it gets better.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Sangeetha-The song to the Stomach !!

A best evening is when one does not have to go back home after a hard day's work and re heat or cook all over again. And what better than to spend it at a restaurant close to home and talk about everything under the sun. It was an interesting conversation which was shut by the most delectable food. 

Sangeetha on OMR has been my go to place whenever I wanted a South Indian touch to my food but eventually end up home delivering their north Indian fare. This time when we decided to go I recommended Sangeetha more due to the proximity and ofcourse I can for sure say that food cannot go wrong here.

A perfect ambiance with a laid back atomosphere and pleasant lighting started of what was to be a gastronomic delight. 

We started off with a starter of Mushroom Chukka. Mushrooms can go absolutely dry if cooked for too long. This one was however very succulent and juicy. The spice in the chukka was pepper but just about the right amount of it. And we just about loved the taste of it. The quantity was so much that it was good enough for 3 people to share the starter and not feel heavy at the end of the meal. 

The main course was garlic naan and onion kulcha with an accompaniment of Paneer Patiala. The garlic naan for me could have had more flavor of Garlic but then again its an acquired taste and I could enjoy with what was given to me. The onion kulcha was good and interesting mix of the onions with the white sesame seeds bursting with flavor at each bite. 

The surprise was however the Paneer Patiala which was completely different from what I actually ate. I expected to have chunks of paneer (the huge slabs) with a different gravy base. What I got however was a spring roll like stuffing cooked along with the gravy. When I did my research on the filling, it was actually the same kind of taste that you get in Khandvi (a Gujrati dish) but it had nothing to do with besan (kadala maavu). It was pure pure paneer powdered and packed with spices then (hold your breath) wrapped in soaked roasted papad (lijjad variety) and cooked along with the gravy. It was granished with grated paneer which was also cooked perfectly. 

My verdict - Yumm. It was most satisfying to note that restos like these are trying to make a difference to the end customers by giving them different dishes. What comes as a surprise is that this comes from an all vegetarian restaurant. I also saw a diet menu of ragi dosa and stuff but could not over burden the stomach and no time to explore it. One extra addition of onion slices and lemon pieces would have made a whole lot of difference to any North Indian fare. We asked for it and we got one small triangular cut piece lemon and chopped onions usually used for Chat items.

We washed down the meal with a lime mint cooler which was nice in taste but not exactly cool. We had asked ice cubes to be added to it. 

A totally satisfying meal worth Rs 600 odd for two people which is total VFM. I also saw a wheel chair which added more joy to the fact that they are differently abled and elderly friendly too. The spacing between tables was quite sufficient to wheel in and out. 

My ratings

Food : 4/5
Ambiance : 5/5
Elderly and Differently abled friendly : 5/5

Try this place and am sure you wont be disappointed.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Fun, Food and Friends- A Precious experience at Amethyst

Amethyst is supposed to be something that's precious and beauty personified. I had been to the Amethyst at the old location in Padmavathi Road, Gopalapuram and was quite miffed at the service. This time when a bunch of friends suggested Amthyst, I really wanted to so not go. Finally I did and I loved the place. This place is much bigger and much more serene though when you step outside, its a chaos due to the traffic.

The ancient statues, the pond,water bodies, immense natural surroundings and the open air set up made it all the more relaxing.


I did go there and man I was very happy with what I had ordered. My friends ordered too and they seem to like what was given there.

We ordered the below items

1. Virgin Mojito
2. Peach flavored ice tea
3. Lemon Iced Tea
4. Chicken Club Sandwich
5. Fusili with Chicken and tomatoes
6. Veg Club Sandwich
7. Cold Coffee with Icecream
8. Pita Bread and Hummus

The Virgin Mojito was a tad bland but the iced teas made up for the lack of flavor there. The Peach flavor in the Iced tea immensely pleased the palate. The Lemon tea too was refreshing.

The cold coffee with icecream was good as well just a tad bitter.

The sandwiches were good. Fillings were of sufficient quantity. The only part that was left wanted was the brown bread that wasn't mentioned on the menu. Atleast they did not mention that we had an option to choose the bread for the sandwich. The kids were quite happy though with the food.

The fusili was huge on quantity but was left wantingon the taste. The tomato base wasn't sufficient and tasted a lil bland. The chicken was however well cooked.

Altogether an it was a good fare and I loved the place for its natural settings.

Food : 3.5 on 5
Accessability : 5/5

Saturday, November 30, 2013

A Kryptos by Wili- A Greek Experience

Kryptos by Willi, the name had been quite intriguing for quite sometime. I had been to  KNK road in Nungambakkam infinite number of times and I used to wonder what this place was all about. I knew Willi was a name but I did not know what it was all about. When I was invited to be a part of a dinner here, I did not hesitate to pass this Opportunity up. Driving through on a weekday, that too to the traffic zone of 
Chennai can be particularly cumbersome.I was late by the time I got here, everyone was already seated and the soup was just about to be served. We started out with the Asparagus Soup. I recently discovered the health benefits and the taste of Asparagus and was quite curious to the taste of the same in Soup. And it did not disappoint. It was smooth, creamy and delicious.

Rice Stuffed capsicum, the paneer kebab and the Feta and spinach pie was simply awesome. :)The next was the Spinach Stuffed Pie.I simply loved it. Being a thorough south Indian, it did remind me of a dish that we make out of spinach but this was very different. 

The Desserts came next and the Baklava was delicious.

 The place is situated right on the main road (Knk Road) and has a lift which takes you to the basement where the restaurant is. Altogether a great place for greek food. Must say that it was my first try and I did enjoy it.

Food : 4/5
Ambience : 5/5
Accessibility : 5/5

Monday, November 4, 2013

Adoniya-The Adonis of Desserts

Located in the heart of the city in Chetpet, this cute little haunt is just what I was looking for all the time. Spaced just enough for 4 tables, the place oozes oomph with the desserts on display. Adoniya Cafe is  complete with desserts, books and coffee ( my categorization).So when the CFG showcase came up for Adoniya, I simply could not resist.

The name means the Lord is God and one of Beauty n Desire and it turns out that this place IS the God of all beautiful and mouthwatering Desserts !! Set up in a small space, its my idea of a cafe where i can come, read books and enjoy eating too. Am a member of the a food group on Facebook and when they announced the showcase for Adoniya, I simply could not resist going. I am a food lover and grew up with the smell of fresh warm cake from the oven.The smell was simply tantalising. I had ordered for a cake about a year back and I loved at the creativity that was on displayed. And since then Maaria and me have been in touch. Maaria Kulusum Tanveer started this as an offshoot to her boutique (which is adjacent to the cafe and a must visit too :) ). Since this was a visit to her Cafe, we shall stick just to that.

First up was the stuffed bun that we had. I devoured it without even asking what it was all about. The taste was good and so was the filling of the bun. Usually there is a smatter of filling in the bun but this was quiet sufficient.

I quenched my thirst with a Lemon Tea a new favorite of mine. The cutlery matched the ambience perfectly :). Started to become a Lemon Tea aficionado with this :)

The corn sandwich was another tasty yet filling fare. Slightly different from what I usually taste in a corn sandwich. Then came the Katti roll. This was totally yumm and the sauces were too good. I loved the Pudina chutney flavor on the inside. It had the right balance of everything .

Next came the platter of desserts. Everyone of them absolutely divine.I personally loved the Lemon tart and the Savory Tart. A bite of the Chocolate cup cake and the red velvet mini took me to a different world altogether. The strawberry roulade was good but the others took my heart away.Pavlova was yummm too :D

The "my favorite" part comes now. Apple Crumble, Red Velvet cake with ice cream and the chocolate sundae. I loved the Chilli chocolate Sunday. The chocolate sauce had a hint of Chilli which gave a heavenly taste to the dessert.

Oh yea.. i almost missed mentioning about the Cupcakes which were droolicious. The one in the far left was a chocolate, middle one was a vanilla and the last one was the red velvet. I unfortunately since cream is not my forte I did not taste the ones displayed above but I did sneak in on a plain vanilla cupcake and it was totally yumm.

Approach wise, there are a lot of steps to climb and I struggled at the last 2 steps but the food more than made up for all of it.

My ratings on the place as below

Ambience - 4 /5
Food - 4/5
Accessability-2.5 /5