Landed Southside

Saturday, 21 June 2014 - 6:20am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

After these trippy foodie trips to the East & then West side ...I went South...A boring hospitality fair was an excuse to land straight to Bengaluru , I still call it Bangalore. This city has been so close to my heart for many reasons....the best one being that I did my first year of Hotel Management & Catering Tech in B'lore...That's when I actually decided that I wanna be a CHEF!!!

Food and some good beer is always welcome and that's what this city does to me..rolls down the red carpet...I actually go on a complete eating spree...and nothing's wrong with that. I always start of with a nice Chai at Chai point at the airport..the ginger chai with the coconut banana cake is a perfect way to start a long drive into the city from the airport. I love their logo "India runs on Chai" quite cool. Besides the traditional eating joints which are all over the city and they are superb even the iconic MTR which has grown into a giant conglomerate with their idli n dosa mixes exported all over, the eateries are always jam- packed. The ethereal dosa n wada my favourite. This time I ate at KUDLA, a mind blowing Manglorean seafood joint..Lip smacking hot..too good . Located on Richmond road, Kudla is now an old hand in the business and deserves applause for maintaining consistent quality in its coastal fare prepared in traditional Mangalorean style. It's a pleasant-looking space with a few rustic touches, reflecting the earthy nature of the Bunt dishes, quotes a foodie from B'lore. I went with a bunch of my local mates who recommended me the right stuff. Kori Roti..pieces of very crispy dosa like crackers on which you have to ladle loads of this spicy chicken a top. The cuisine of Mangalore would remain incomplete without usage of rice. Rice is cooked in various forms such as pancakes, wafer thin rice rotis served with chicken curry, grain rice, sannas i.e., idlis fluffed with toddy or yeast, neer dosa, etc.

As you eat it (you are supoosed to crush n knead the crispy roti with the gravy and it becomes softer as you progress..) Quite an experience. The ghee roast prawns is quite a banger. Ghee roast is one of the most popular delicacies of Mangalore, popularised by the Bunts of Kundapur. The paste made of two kinds of red chillies, fenugreek, cumin, coriander and cooked very well in ghee takes these prawns to a victory stand.

Onr of my new favourites is Kane (Lady fish), the pride of Mangalore. Lady fish, popularly known as "Kane" in the coastal belt of Karnataka, is one of the tastiest fish in that region. Smothered with some secret spices and coated in semolina ..it was cooked to a madness protection. Followed by a wicked prawn curry, Mangalorean style chicken curry and ghee rice sent me straight up to bliss land.

Next stop UB City, Sanchos...cantina Mexicana. Stomping energy of the place, great vibes and some very good food. The closest you can get to Mexico. Chef Vikas Seth who has trained with some very talented Mexian chefs at the CIA has nailed it. Salsa- fresh. Chillies loike habenero, poblano, chipotle all being used in the most authentic ways. The best margarita by far..kudos chef!!! Will come back agin for those Baja Fish Tacos. All the corn tortillas are actually imported and there is no compromise whatsoever.

Twas a great night watching the FIFA and some salsa baby. Chef Manu, a good friend of mine has given a new concept of earnest, quirky, sexy, creative, affordable eateries and bar. After the very cool Monkey Bar, the newly opened The Fatty Bao, Asian Gastro pub has some cool fare. I pigged out on the Pork Baos and Beef Cheeks..Killer!!

I was quite full with some goodies sent from the chef .. but next time its gonna be some wicked Curries for me. Great job chef!!

I think as chefs we are great influencers, entertainers.. Just read something interesting this morning. Quote "Long time ago, people who sacrificed their sleep, family, food, laughter and other joys were called SAINTS....Now they are called CHEFs."


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