Baarak, the new biryani joint in Chennai is about celebrating delicious flavours
From a delectable raan to a biryani that is delightfully homely, Baarak, the new eatery down Khader Nawaz Khan Road is a celebration of flavours.
Last week we visited Baarak, the newest biryani joint in town, tucked inside Gems Court on Khader Nawaz Khan Road. To start with, the modest 20-seater offered us a limited menu of different biryanis, Raan and Chicken 65. Of course, we ordered the Mutton Biryani, a portion of the Raan and a plate of Chicken 65. Yes, we practically ordered everything on the menu. Barring the dessert. If you get an impression of less — then allow us to assure you that soon we discovered the opposite to be the truth when it comes to quantity and flavour. The slow-cooked Raan ironically but delightfully arrived rather quickly at the table in a curious ceremonial manner — rolled over in a special trolley, nestled in a tiered stand. We prodded the Raan with a fork and watched in awe as the meat fell away. A mouthful confirmed what our eyes had suspected — the meat was meltin-the-mouth, like butter. “We marinate the meat for 24 hours and then slow cook it for more than six hours,” says Avoor Mohammed Rayyan, one of the four partners at Baarak, which opened about a month ago.
Once the biryani arrives we agree that the tagline of the family-run brand: ‘Badshah of Biryani’ is well deserved. Besides generous portions, the quality of ingredients comes through with the meat being at the crux of the flavouscape. Fragrant rice smothers chunks of juicy mutton and added to that we find two nalli pieces to appease us suitably. “We wanted to offer the authentic, celebratory Muslim biryani — the biryani for special occasions made with premium and fresh ingredients. We believe you should have a taste of our ‘shaadi wala’ biryani whenever you want and not have to wait for a wedding!” says Rayyan, who shares that his family business is into leather manufacturing and how being a foodie, he always wanted to open a biryani joint.
Meanwhile, the Chicken 65, a mandatory accompaniment to a biryani, had the perfect balance of spices, though it was a tad dry. As we navigated our way through the meal, we barely made any conversation until it was time to refuse the dessert. Not out of politeness, but due to paucity of space, we left with promises of coming back to try the sweet dish that boasted almonds, eggs and saffron in the mix.“By God’s grace, the response has been so good that by this month end we plan to expand further (on KNK road),” assures Rayyan as we take leave.
Meal for two INR 700.
— Sabrina Rajan