Southern Aromas is one of the nice South Indian restaurants in Chennai and so when I was part of an invited group from CFG to check out their new menu and the Dosa Festival, I was more than excited. The previous visit with a client to Souther Aromas was a nice experience with our guests raving about the food,while the previous tasting for their old menu was an excellent experience. Maybe that is why my expectations were high and this time, they were not met!
First things first, the restaurant was not ready for the Dosa Fest, so we got to taste only one Dosa - the Kari Dosa. The dosa was a little dry to my liking, but obviously with the sambar, it tasted great. But normally the Kari Dosa can be had on its own, not this time around. The sambar though was an instant hit among all of us. That is the only dosa we got!
The rest of the food was a mixed experience - the Malli Kozhi Varuval (the first photo) was a superb dish, the Chettinad Kozhi Varutha Kari was excellent in both texture and flavour, the lamb gravy that came in last was excellent and with the parotas, all of us liked it. Inspite of being full with (the not so good stuff that came in the beginning of the meal), I was trying to stuff myself with this excellent gravy and parota (and wishing this came first)! The Allepy home made paneer was also nice, but I was not a big fan of the veg starters or the squid - though my two friends liked the squid, I did not! There was an Ambur Kheema rice which was nice and I was glad it was not called biriyani.
Spare a thought for my vegetarian friend who was with us and was almost getting frustrated - the veg food was very very average that day.
The meen polichadhu, the vendaka (lady's finger) fry and another kurma that was served were all very average. My other grouse was that for a specialty restaurant named Southern Aromas, there was not a single south Indian dessert - we were only offered (an excellent) rasamalai and ice cream, but though the rasamalai was good, in a specialty restaurant, I would like some South Indian desserts!