This restaurant has been in my mind for quite sometime now and recently, some talk about the place on Chennai Food Guide pushed me to visit it even quicker 🙂
We were three of us, classmates in school, catching up for dinner. The owner of this place, Mr. Vijayakumar Dharmaraj is a close friend to both of my friends. They know each other very well from Trichy days. It was nice to meet him and ever easier to introduce myself and strike up a conversation. Though he did not eat, just for company, he joined us at the table and we had a pleasant chat while we were there.
This place is located bang on South Boag Road, just a few metres away in the direction of Residency Towers from the famous landmark, ‘Annai Illam’. For those who do not know, it is Late Actor Sivaji Ganesan’s residence. Car parking and a lift was available and comfortable. As we entered, I liked the ambience. Interiors neatly done, not too striking. The photo frames on the walls were nice. There is also a board room with a projector and a sound system that can seat about 20 people I think.
Now coming to the food, we wanted to taste a bit of few items, so ordered a few items and shared it among ourselves. We started with the Pallapatti chicken Biryani. As I could see the rice was basmati and not seeraga samba. Remember having visited Pallapatti for some function during my school days in Trichy. Though not as famous as Ambur, this place is quite famous for the biryani made in the Tamil Muslim style. Not sure if the biryani got its name from this place, but it tasted good. Not a big fan of the chicken piece in biryani, just tasted a small bit of it and it was soft and well-cooked. I liked the gravy that came along with the biryani. Then came crab masala and chicken boneless sukka. As I do not eat seafood, my friends had the crab masala and they liked it, and I liked the chicken sukka. The parotta was soft and flaky and super hot, and the gravy to go with it was good too. I am basically a parotta lover 😉 The chicken leg piece masala was ok. I felt the chicken could have had a little more of the masala, but it was soft though. One thing worth mentioning is the podi idly. This was very different than what I have had. It was actually in a bowl and had to invert it on the banana leaf. This had a nice aroma of sesame oil and podi. Unlike idlies being smeared with oil and podi elsewhere, this was a nice change and the podi was evenly distributed throughout. They must have mixed it in the batter and steamed it. There are many variants in this idly and should go there sometime to try them. I loved the three chutneys served along with it. Normally in a place that is famous for South-Indian tiffin fare, if you end up slightly late, the chutneys are on their way to the waste bin. Here, in spite of being late for dinner, the chutneys were served fresh and I liked that. The Bull’s eye, colloquially ‘Half boil’, was visually pleasing 🙂 I don’t eat half boil and would prefer an omelette any day, so my friends had it. Then came ‘Aradhana’ 🙂 Not sure how they got this name for a dosa ! Similar to the egg dosa, this is a dosa with the half boil on the top 🙂 It looked quite nice with the perfect half boil, again, since I do not prefer egg this way, got my friends to eat it and I devoured the remaining dosa with the gravy and chutneys. Couldn’t help ordering another parotta with the gravy since it tasted so nice. We were kinda too stuffed to try any desserts, just finished with a small Pepsi.
With the owner by the side of us, probably the dishes were prepared with extra care that they tasted so good 🙂 There are still a lot more dishes that I would love to taste. I’ll plan to drop in sometime and relish it thoroughly ! One of my friends paid the bill before I was back from the wash and so I am not sure of the final bill amount. From the menu card, the prices looked reasonable for a place like this.