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Kettle

Kettle

A few months back I had read raving reviews about Kettle. Friends wanted to go every week, but somehow I did not get a chance to go and then I forgot all about it. Last week, friends from the Chennai Food Guide were invited to check out the food and I accompanied them!!! The place has been envisioned as a tea house and they have about 20 varieties of tea or so. In comparison, the Cha Bar inside Oxford Book House, another tea specialty place had over 80 types of tea. I have a soft spot for Cha Bar and ever since they closed down to make way for a bank, I have missed the place big time. Why only the Chennai Cha Bar was closed? Anyway coming back to Kettle, the place is much more than a tea house - they serve many varieties of sandwiches, pastas, salads and desserts!! I liked the ambiance - it was simple and elegant and there was space for a bunch of 8-10 people to sit and chatter away to glory. The food, though, was good only in parts. The first of the lot, the Pank

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Sam's Pizza

Sam's Pizza

From the time this fellow moved from OMR to Nungambakkam, I have to keep hearing about how this is nearby and that is walkable and KNK road is next door and how he is in the middle of everywhere and how he can wake up at 830 and come to office at 9 am and so on!!!! When other colleagues were out somewhere else, and we knew Moti Mahal had this fabulous lunch combo, we headed there, since it was 'walkable' for him from his house. Why that makes sense when we have to get back to work, I don't know, but we went. And we saw the Sam's Pizza, unlimited buffet and walked in instead of Moti Mahal. 26 varieties of salads, 3 soups, garlic bread, 2 varieties of pizzas (2 different pizzas for veg and non veg) and a single serving of dessert was on offer for Rs 250! It was too good to miss a try and we found the place packed for lunch.  After a 5 minute table cleaning wait, we were seated and asked to enjoy our meal. We decided to take one veg and one non veg so t

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Icarus Dhaba and Bhangra School

Icarus Dhaba and Bhangra School

I will stick to the Dhaba part. A year or so back, a friend of mine took me there for lunch and we came out feeling disgusted. The curd was spoilt, the chicken was tasteless and everything went wrong, but every person who has been there had only good things to say about the place. So on a very nasty work Thursday, three of us decided to go to Delhi Highway and glutton our way out of stress, but imagine our surprise when the waiter said "Yes sir, pure vegetarian". We walked out and the same friend, suggested we try Icarus again. So we were there and the old man waved to my friend. Apparently they have history which is best not written here! We told him that we had a bad time and we are coming back after a year. "Everything will be good sir, I promise" he said. At one point, my blog writing was "Wow, Punjabi food run by a Punjabi family and so it was authentic and blah", but today I cannot think of any Dhaba run by a non Punjabi. So being run

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Biriyani Files - Breakfast Biriyani

Biriyani Files - Breakfast Biriyani

What so special about a bunch of 10 people waiting outside a 'Potti Kadai' (Local tea shop)  to get their biriyani? Nothing right? Then you are told that biriyani there is available only on Sundays, and then there is something special attached to it. A biriyani available only once a week? And then your watch reminds you that it is 830 AM!!!!! Whoa, 830 AM and people waiting to get biriyani!?! The Arcot belt, including Ambur and Vaniyambadi is famous for their biriyani! Some time back, I would have called it a 'Slightly better tomato rice', but yeah, now that I am trying to understand biriyani, I realize that biriyani in this belt is one that is made with lesser of the spices and more of the masala! That is how the natives there like their biriyani and therefore that is how you will get it there. What happens when, in a place where biriyani is a home dish, waits every week to get their biriyani? Apparently people in this town get this biriyani and the

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Cascade

Cascade

Though Indo Chinese has been around long enough, sometimes, my gang craves for "Chinese" food. The way things are moving, I won't be surprised if Indo Chinese gets included into (the already varied) Indian cuisine. For some people I know, it is almost home food - "My wife makes the same Chicken Manchuri (yes, Manchuri without the "an") and fried rice for dinner" is not very uncommon these days among my patients. Is that why they have a need to go to the doctor? Well, that is a different debate altogether!!!! It is now common knowledge that Manchurian is not really a Chinese dish, but definitely it is an Indo Chinese dish and nobody can question its place there!!!! But since it is common, the quality, taste and everything about it has taken a beating!!!! Chinese eat outs have lost out on taste big time, which is why I believe that even Indo Chinese is now an exclusive art!!!!! But there is one place which has been consistent since

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Shiraz Cafe

Shiraz Cafe

Once in a while you come across a place that your blog misses!!!! It is almost like a sin if the food blog does not have a place like that. Shiraaz is one such place! The first time I went there was almost 3 years back, but for some strange reason, I have not documented it and till today I have not figured out why! But here it comes, finally! Shiraaz is an Iranian restaurant, run by an Iranian family inside the Cholamandalam Artist Village premises. On Sundays, like most places, they run a buffet! The setting is relaxing, though during summer, it might roast you! Outdoor, amidst plants and cats and trees, a relaxing setting that can seat about 30-40 people and a small indoor that can seat a maximum of four people is all that the cafe is made of. Cutlery is simple, food is in hot cases and service is by two ladies and the owners are inside explaining the dishes to you! This is a place for a slightly different palate, so if you are expecting a Mediterranean Chilly

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New in Town - Curry Club

New in Town - Curry Club

"A little bit of Monica in my life, a little bit of Erica......." was a super hit song when I was in the last year of school. In those days, at least for food, speciality cuisine restaurants were few and far apart and mostly every restaurant was a Multi Cuisine. Soon the Multi Cuisine concept became synonymous with  "No cuisine is good". We were there as part of the Chennai Food Guide for the opening of Curry Club on Haddows Road and this restaurant aims to revive the Multi Cuisine and extends it to Multi Events as well. A nice, posh space on Haddows Road, with almost 100 + seating, making it easily the largest restaurant in the Nunagambakkam area. They have a conference room, you can take the whole first floor for a private party, but you can also go there for a quick meal - olden day style. And that is how the menu is structured - A little bit of Chinese, a little bit of Indian, a little bit of Continental, a couple of burgers and sandwiches

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Moti Mahal's Packed Lunch

Moti Mahal's Packed Lunch

There is something about the packed food that is unappealing. I am generally not a fan of these packed business lunches and I don't encourage them either. But we had an quality audit and there was a need for business lunch and the auditors wanted to eat a quick lunch at the premises so, we ordered the business lunch from Moti Mahal. The two times I have been there, I really liked the food and it was reasonably pricy, but it was well worth it. The business lunch took everybody by surprise - it was a rather filling lunch combo that they have priced almost ridiculously!!! Imagine a centre section full of a pulao. Sides had a small portion of butter chicken masala, one rajma gravy, 2 pieces each of 2 varieties of kebabs, one veg gravy, a small portion of veggies, some curd, one gulab jamun all fit into a box and 2 chapatis separately! It was one hell of a business lunch and a rather tasty one too!!! I liked the kebabs as they were soft and juicy and the butter chicken was real

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Make me a Master Cook!

Make me a Master Cook!

I t is not everyday that you get to watch a super talented person cook out a meal! What if this person is talented enough to be the MasterChef India's runner up? This Saturday, the 9th of March, as an part of the Women's Day celebrations, Adoniya (yeah, the same one that dishes out exquisite cupcakes for all and fashion stuff for women) is bringing down Shazia Khan to Chennai! Shazia calls herself a dreamer who knows what she wants! That appears to be right, for she is involved in her family business of running educational institutions in Bangalore, does her bit for the society via her 'Anubhava Shiksha Kendra' an educational wing for under privileged children AND then goes on to be the runner up at a MasterChef!!!! "My father was a great cook and an even better host" she says remembering her late father "so, it is only natural that I inherit some of it" in all modesty! But she is quick to admit that she learnt most of the cooking from her mo

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Movenpick is back!

Movenpick is back!

My tryst with Movenpick was like everybody else's! Started off great, then went downhill, then a friend took me there and I loved the ice cream and then service was bad and then it shut down!!!! A few days back when we were driving down, we spotted Movenpick on Nungambakkam High Road and we all wanted to test it out, so after a dinner meet, we landed here for some ice cream. Interiors are smartly done, with seating for about 30, but a cramped 30!!!! After tasting a few ice creams, we settled for one Raspberry Strawberry ice cream which was nice, but a little sour, nice nevertheless if you like those flavours. We asked for a mini pancake with ice cream for which we chose my favourite Movenpick flavour - the maple walnut! It was brilliant - the pancake was nicely flavoured, there was some maple syrup on it (not the real one, but the 2% one)! We also got ourselves a Belgian waffle with Cappuccino ice cream. The waffle not even close to Belgian, but was nice! The cappuccino

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