Punjab Grills met Chennai: A blend of Northern and Southern flavours
A table at Punjab Grill might seem like an odd spot for a bowl of Kerala style avial. Similar is the feeling when you are served Kerala style parotta with their signature Tawa kheema khaleji. We soon find out that blurring the line between the distinctive flavours of the North and the South of India is the core idea behind the newly launched menu at the one-and-a-half-year-old restaurant. Punjab Grill met Chennai — as the name of the venture goes, promises an outburst of flavours and take the hint, it’s a not so cheerful a ride.
Curated by Chef Vijay Sethi from Punjab Grill and Chef Vetrimurugan Nateshan from Zambar, the South Indian speciality restaurant in New Delhi, the unique menu will have you surprised, if not prepared to see chicken tikka served next to South Indian fish curry. “We have tried to prepare and present our Punjabi dishes in a South Indian style,” says Kashif Ansari, the resident chef of the restaurant while adding that the fish and paneer dishes are the most sought after ones in the menu.
Picking up the Bollywood songs playing in the background, we watch our table getting filled with platters of veg and non-veg starters. Be it Tawa paneer, Tawa murgh kali mirch (chicken) or Tawa mushroom masala, marinated and grilled in a bit of yoghurt,a pinch of kasuri methi and lots of black pepper, all of them are sure to make you reach for the tissues and bottles of clear water (imported from Bhutan, we learn). With their striking green colour, Moogilai adai, herbal South Indian dosas made of rice and lentils stand out in the otherwise red platter not just in appearance but also in taste and is definitely worth a try.
As we move to the mains, there is paneer tikka masala with a spicy tomato gravy and malai palak bhurji, corn and shredded spinach with a strong garlic flavour as the vegetarian options.
From meen manga, traditional fish curry with chunks of mango and green chillies to mutton milagu masala, succulent lamb pieces cooked in coconut cream, there is an array of gravies to choose from to have with Malabar parotta and plain ponni rice. And as to make up for the peppery journey so far, we are pleased with the sight of a gulab jamun to end our meal, served with jalebi churros and semiya paal payasam that ensured a sweet ending.
Meal for two: `1,500 onwards
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