A fellow foodie buddy of mine Rajiv Shankar started a discussion on reviewing last year from our foodie perspective. The idea sounded good, and I right away started planning for this post 😛
After taking a considerably long break from food blogging/reviewing for almost a year (Oct 2014 – Jul 2015), I resumed my food blogging while I was on an official trip in South Africa (The link has my reviews from the trip)
But ofc, the break was only for food blogging and not my food journey itself. I’ve tried out on average 8 – 10 restaurants a month in 2015, some of them repeats, some of them new. I’ve not blogged/reviewed all of them yet, and I’ve decided not to, for a quite a few, where the experience was unmemorable (brrrr…)
With that, here’s my review of my ‘Foodie’ 2015:
Best restaurant/cafe you visited in 2015?
Out of all the restaurants I had visiting in 2015, I loved Little Italy the most, thanks for their excellent Cheese Fondue and Canneloni Alla Florentina. An Indianized version of the fondue is served in Tasteation, Kilpauk (review coming up soon), but Little Italy definitely takes the icing for the fondue and canneloni, the taste of which is still fresh on my buds though it’s been some 8 months since I last had them from Little Italy.
Read my review of Little Italy here: Little Italy, Anna Nagar
Worst restaurant/cafe you visited in 2015?
This definitely goes to 400 Degree Barbecues, a BBQ restaurant in T. Nagar. Though a few of my friends have had a good experience here, our group had a very bad experience at this restaurant during and after our visit. Without further elaboration, the award of starring as the worst restaurant in my memories goes to 400 Degree Barbecues.
Read my review of 400 Degree Barbecues to know why I feel this way: 400 Degree Barbecue (400F), T. Nagar
The best new dish you explored/discovered and which you absolutely loved?
I’ve tasted a lot of dishes in this year, quite a few of them new. To list a few of them:
- Bunny Chow, a South African dish made by hollowing out a loaf of bread and filling it with curry. It was a completely different dish that I first tried in South Africa, and later had in Coco Jaunt, Anna Nagar (review coming up soon). I must say, somehow, I enjoyed the one at Coco Jaunt more.
- Cheese Fondue from Little Italy 😀 – Read more about it here: Little Italy, Anna Nagar
- Last but not the least, Maplai Theeppori Paneer. Spicy, fiery, but enjoyable every bite. I absolutely loved this dish! Read my review of the dish along with others dishes from Maplai here: Maplai, Nungambakkam
Worst thing you’ve ever had in 2015?
Again, quite a few dishes can be listed out here. But the icing (ironically in a negative sense) would be taken up by:-
- Cauliflower tikka from 400 Degree Barbecues – Medicinal tikka it was, as though someone cleaned them with disinfectants. Read my review of the dish along with others dishes from 400 Degree BBQ here: 400 Degree Barbecue (400F), T. Nagar
- Veg Kothu Parotta from Shanghai Annachi – Had upset tummy the next day after eating this, and I wasn’t alone on that 🙁 . Read my review of Shanghai Annachi here: Shanghai Annachi, Nungambakkam
Best VFM restaurant?
No questions about this. Out of the ones I explored, the most pocket friendly ones were:
- Fusilli Reasons, Kilpauk
2 people can easily have a good meal here for Rs. 300 – 400, which is great in Kilpauk
- Prem’s Grama Bhojanam, Adyar – Another gem that mainly serves millet based food in the city, in the posh area of Adyar. But don’t let the location fool you. 3 of us, who are considerably heavy eaters, went here and finished our meals in Rs. 484 incl taxes, which is a phenomenal thing to be honest.
If pocket friendly AND healthy is what you’re looking for, then Prem’s Grama Bhojanam is your destination of choice. Read my complete review of PGB here
Most over rated/over priced restaurant?
This is definitely Cafe Coffee Day, The Square, in Nungambakkam. Overpriced, average food makes this place the most over-rated in my books. Read my complete review of CCD, The Square
The one place you went over and over again?
This is definitely Shaack in Anna Nagar. We’re absolutely smitten by their Blackened/Stuffed Cottage Cheese Steaks. Ofc that doesn’t mean their other items are any less. Pretty much everything we’ve tried in Shaack has been great so far. Even their Asian dishes are good for my buds, which usually dislike any Asian food.
The furthest you’ve travelled for a restaurant, which one?
- Within Chennai: Prems Grama Bhojanam ~ 24 Kms from my home.
- International: ~ 7200 Kms – This was my official trip to South Africa, which also helped me explore the food there. Read my reviews from the visit here
Best restaurant ambiance wise?
This is Little Italy once again, for having a non-flashy, cozy ambiance overall
Shaack comes a close second, with a cozy ambiance again, with a great amount of natural lighting
The place you love to go as a big group?
When you’re a foodie, and go out with fellow foodies, any place is enjoyable.
Originally, I didn’t have an answer for this when my friend asked me. But thinking about it, I feel Arabian Delights in Anna Nagar is underrated. They serve one of the best Shawarmas I’ve had across the city (even including South Africa). But their dingy ambiance and relatively low popularity makes them an underrated place except for those who have been there few times. Read my complete review of the place here
Best review of 2015
This would be Maplai again, as it was the first comprehensive restaurant review I had written and paved the way for more such detailed reviews (including this one)
Not to mention, pretty much every single dish we tried there was a hit, making it a memorable visit/review.