Chennai's iconic restaurant in Egmore gets a makeover

One of Chennai’s iconic restaurants might have gotten a complete makeover, but it continues to serve the ubiquitous taste of Udupi
Udupi thali
Udupi thali

Ever since Mathsya (then Udupi Home) burst onto the Chennai food scene in the 1940s in Egmore, it swiftly sealed a place for itself among foodies who were looking for some authentic and sumptuous vegetarian fare. And now, the iconic landmark of Chennai, which spans seven decades, has gotten a pristine makeover.

Starters
Starters

As we stepped into the revamped restaurant, we couldn’t help but notice the journey of the restaurant from the pre-independence era, adeptly captured in a series of photographs adorning its walls. Pictures speak a thousand words and these pictures are testimony to the brand''s long and impressive journey.

The restaurant might have a brand new avatar, but when it comes to taste, it continues to dole out oodles of nostalgia along with the authentic taste of coastal Karnataka. 

Our lunch began with the iconic Rasa vadai, which was a perfect appetiser for the elaborate meal that followed. Soon, the squishy and delectable starters — Mangalore bondas, guliappas, and Mangalore buns — arrived in style, along with chutney and sambar. Among the trio, the Mangalore buns, a deep-fried puffed bread, stood out with its distinct taste of bananas and a hint of cumin.

For the main course, we had the popular Udupi thali, a platter comprising myriad flavors in the form of Bisi bele bath, vadam, chitranna, palya (dry poriyal), kadubu, gassi, kara uppu puli dosai, herbs and greens dosai, fruit pachadi, and curd rice. Needless to say, it seemed like an explosion of flavours in the mouth. The highlight of the meal was the soft as a feather Neer dosa with Kai bella, a match made in heaven.

Rasa vadai
Rasa vadai

After the Udupi sojourn, we dug into some Continental and North Indian fare. The restaurant’s popular Chilli cheese toast, which was buttery-cheesy on top and plain on the other side, arrived first. This one is best enjoyed fresh and hot off the stove. We also tried the bread with Spicy corn, which gave it a continental flavour, and Peas masala, which provided an Indian touch. The bread was fresh as a daisy, and soft and fluffy. We were told that the bread was baked in-house. 

Chilli cheese toast
Chilli cheese toast

The Tandoori platter arrived soon after, and this one comprised Masala kulcha, Methi paratha, Paneer mint kash, Aloo 55, Golconda biriyani, and raita. While the Masala kulcha passes muster, we quite loved the rest of the lot.We highly recommend the Aloo 55, which was crunchy and delicious, and makes for a perfect evening snack. We washed down the elaborate fare with some fruit falooda and piping hot filter coffee. 

Meal for two starts at `600.

sangeetha.p@newindianexpress.com

@psangeetha2112

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