Rest : KaravalliLoc : Gateway Hotel, Residency Road,
Meal : Lunch
Having been to most of the locally famed eateries i thought i would give the cuisine a try in a finer setting. Karavalli, came highly recommended from almost everyone i spoke to and it wasn't a difficult choice.
Its nestled in a very green spot within the Gateway Hotel, which happens to be in the middle of the city but you wouldnt know it if you walked out back. This much greenery takes getting used to for a Bombay Boy.
The space itself is very refined yet reflects the local touch. Understated elegance, gives you a feel for how the patricians of the south must have lived during the Raj.
The menu was akin to Konkan Cafe, in that it covered a particular region rather than say a Dakshin which has a comprehensive and exhaustive menu covering a great many regional cuisines.
i was determined to get the thali and the thali is what i ordered. Why choose when you can have it all ?
we started off with a little bowl of papads which i quite enjoyed. there was a terrific garlic pickel along which i might have finished half way.
red chutney was terrific. i think i got em to refill it a bunch more times.
the rasam was all pepper and fire, just brilliant. Got the appetite going
these were served up with appams or parottas made to order. i had the appams exclusively, and loved em.
they offer regular or red rice and i chose red of course.
the dessert was brought out separately, the payasam, i am a big fan of these but i like em cold, but that's a personal preference.
a slew of paans to end the meal.
Overall, my meal was terrific. a good thali in my opinion has no real standout dishes but works in tandem which was the case here, the dishes were in harmony and it wasn't too rich or complicated. Simple fare is hardest to do right anyway.
The pricing for what you get is terrific value for money. Its almost the third of the price of a Dakshin and nowhere is it weaker in what it offers which is saying something.
I must also say that the service was terrific, from the moment we entered till we got the check, they were extremely hospitable. They insisted we have something to drink, when i refused, they got me buttermilk anyway and then refused to let us pay for it saying it was on the house as we were their guests.
They ensured we knew the meal was not limited and we could more of anything we wanted. Explained all the dishes in detail and like at a family meal, they were nudging us to try this and that and warned us at the outset not to ruin our appetite with too much papad.
Food : 8/10Service :10/10
Damage : 2500 for two without drinks.