I have heard of the name Y Cook quite a few times on various food groups and this place has been on my list for very long ! Probably one of the very few places in Chennai serving Sri Lankan cuisine. I almost forgot about it until today, when myself and a friend from the US, were thinking of a place in and around Besant Nagar beach. Immediately remembered this one and decided to go here!
I knew it was on top of the Cafe Coffe Day Lounge on the 3rd Avenue, so wasn’t difficult to locate the place. As we entered, the person greeted and welcomed us. Immediately took a seat. The place was quite small, just a few tables, but looked clean and neat. The AC was on and wonderful! The first thing that I spotted in the menu was that Sri Lankan dishes were only a small section of the whole list, they also serve North-Indian and South-Indian dishes. It was sort of disappointing that they didn’t position themselves as a speciality Sri Lankan restaurant serving only that cuisine. Anyways, that must have been a conscious business decision. After a brief look at the menu, we were ready to order.
Mr. Karthik waited on our table, and he was polite and patient in explaining what each dish was. We clearly told him we were there to taste their Sri Lankan specialities and we were not interested in any ‘usual’ stuff. My friend was a vegetarian and I was okay with an all-vegetarian meal plus Devilled Chicken 😉 He accordingly recommened Red Idiyappam (10 pcs), Devilled Chicken, Kezhangu Sodhi, Pol Sambol, Egg Thokku and Pol Roti. We asked him if they had Kothu Roti which was basically their version of our Kothu Parotta, to which he replied in the negative 🙁
Devilled Chicken was in a way close to ‘our’ dry Chilli Chicken sans the Chinese touch, it tasted quite good. Idiyappam was made of red rice and hence the red color. It was soft, well-steamed and good. Kezhangu Sodhi was basically a coconut milk-based gravy with boiled potatoes and onion. It was tasty and went well with the Idiyappam, however, I felt it was a bit too runny, and it could have been a bit thicker. Good that the person mentioned that Pol Sambol comes with Maasi, which was a dried-fish seasoning. Immediately asked him to make it without that seasoning as both of us don’t eat seafood. It was a typical dry thenga thovayal, tasted good. Pol Roti (Hope I got the name rite) was basically grated coconut-stuffed roti. There were three rotis in a plate. The presence of coconut was quite insignificant, not sure why it was stuffed in the first place. It was good and went well with the Egg Thokku, which was more of the North-Indian types, with a neutral gravy of tight consistency and bits of boiled egg. It was an odd dish out amongst other Sri Lankan dishes, but tasted very good.
Wanted to taste any special Sri Lankan dessert, I was hoping if they had vatilappam, since it wasn’t explicitly mentioned in the menu. Unfortunately, we were told it wasn’t available today. In fact no dessert was available today which was kind of weird. So had to ask for the check and finish the dinner.
I paid 580 bucks in all, which was very nominal for what we ate and the place is certainly VFM. Unless they have more varieties, desserts, etc I wouldn’t been too keen to go again. This visit was a nice experience and that’s about it.