If one had any doubts about availability of south Indian food in Gurgaon, they can heave a sigh of relief. The city has a lot to offer in this respect and here’s how…
1. Zambar- One of the few fine dining south Indian restaurants in Gurgaon or even NCR, it is located at the famous Ambience Mall. Lending a distinctive flavour to this restaurant is the presence of a bar, relatively uncommon in south Indian restaurants. The house boat style theme is aesthetically pleasing and complements the coastal reference in the restaurant’s nomenclature. The food extends beyond the ubiquitous south Indian offerings a la Dosa or idli and offers a rich variety of seafood option. This place has been the recipient of several food awards and has a huge fan following. The menu is divided into vegetarian, non -vegetarian and coastal sections, showcasing food from Andhra, Kerala, Karnataka but predominantly Tamil Nadu. A meal here is definitely an experience to savour.
A meal for two would cost approximately Rs 2000.
2. Coco Palm Moets Enterprise- This one is situated in DT city centre mall on MG Road. It offers a mix of Andhra and Chettinad cuisine. This is definitely much more than the regular Southie joint. With both vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes featured on the menu there are definitely a lot of options for someone wanting to experiment. This is the place of choice for the movie-going population of this mall.
A meal for two would cost Rs 1200 .
3. Mr. Idly Express- This one’s opened newly at the LG floor in mgf metropolis mall. The menu displays daily specials. The place has a self-service format. The place has a great location advantage being on the entrance of Auchan- the Department Store from Landmark Group- giving it a fairly good clientele on weekends, right from the time the place has opened. This is probably a direct function of the stores’ footfalls. The place however, is too small for the customers so ends up feeling claustrophobic. The last time I visited, the food didn’t quite pass muster, though the coffee was not bad. For the not so discerning south Indian food starved public, the restaurant may not be that bad. The menu shows some spark but not quite. The variety in Idlis though is something to talk of. Some hygiene factors, like the seating arrangement and the lack of facility to pay by card hold back the quality of experience.
A meal for two would cost approximately Rs.450.
4. Madhuban – This is a small place located at centre point mall opposite Galleria and DLF city club, at DLF city Phase four. It’s clean and swanky with a distinct character. The meal contains no onion or garlic in keeping with its sattvic (pure) theme. The place is nice and simple; not making too much of a fuss. The food is decent and the presentation neat.
A meal for two would cost around Rs. 600 approximately.
5. Sagar Ratna- This one reminds me of the udupi restaurants in Mumbai which serve Chinese, south Indian, north Indian cuisine under the same roof. Probably one of the most widespread chain of south Indian food joints in the north. It’s generally a fulfilling experience. Their combo meals are irresistible, both for the palate and the wallet. There are many branches in Gurgaon but the one on Sohna Road is my favourite.
A meal for two would cost around Rs. 450.
6. Vaango- Located at south point mall and some other branches-most famous being the one at Cyber Hub- Vaango literally means “come in“ in Tamil and the staff does manage to keep the theme running. The USP of this place is they serve substance with style. On account of customer service, this place gets full marks! The staff is one of the best, smiling obsequiously and making a genuine effort to provide a good experience to its customers. The menu also is pretty extensive.
A meal for two would cost around Rs. 350
7. Naivedyam- My favourite place to indulge in idlis and dosas. I’m positive that my opinion resonates with a lot of people, given the serpentine queues at their outlet on weekends. The traditionally attired staff dishing out complimentary welcome drinks- adds to the southern feel of the joint. This along with the sale of sandalwood incense, Mysore pak and pan at the counter. They generally feature attractive discounts on credit cards. As far as bang for your buck is concerned, Naivedyam tops the list!.
A meal for two would cost approximately Rs.400.
Whilst the restaurants are listed in random order and do not reflect any ranking, the list is not designed to be exhaustive but is crafted on the basis of my personal experience .