Chennai, the land of historical and cultural legacies, is noted for its rich classical music, centuries old film industry and finger-licking South Indian delicacies. The mildly hot traditional cuisine of Chennai, loaded with rice, legumes, lentils and a host of spices, promises to be a sensory overload. From yummy appam to finger-licking Chettinad Chicken to highly aromatic filter coffee, Chennai cuisine is all about zest and flavors. But that is not all to Chennai food. If you think that food options in Chennai are limited to idli, vadas and upmas, then you couldn’t be more wrong. Chennai has legions of restaurants catering to cuisines from all across the globe. With an exciting variety of both local and continental cuisine catering to a host of delish delicacies from all across the globe, dinning in Chennai definitely promises to be a memorable experience for the epicureans. If you wish to know more about the savories of Chennai, then dig deep into this article and know more about popular Chennai food.
Chennai Food Guide
The deep influence of Tamil culture can be well perceived in the local cuisine of this coastal city. Chennai cuisine is a blend of different flavors like sweet, sour, bitter and spicy and offers quite an extensive range of delicacies when it comes to talking of breakfast, lunch and dinner. Idli, vada, dosa, idiyappam, uppma and pongal are some of the city’s favorite breakfast choices. For lunch or dinner, you can bet on traditional meal of rice, vegetable curry, sambar, rasam, curds etc. If you love non-vegetarian food, then the famous Chettinad dishes are a must-try. Apart from this, Chennai is also known for its filter coffee. The Saravanaa Bhavan Group of restaurants in Chennai is quite famous for its excellent vegetarian meals. Some of the other popular restaurants of Chennai are Vasanta Vihar at Rajaji Salai, Ananda Bhavan at Triplicane High Road, Mathura Restaurant at Tarapore Tower Anna Salai and Usilampatti at Lattice Bridge Road.
Although the city’s food tradition is majorly influenced by authentic Tamil Nadu cuisine, Chennai has some delectable regional cuisines to offer to its gastronomists. With the changing trend and lifestyle, Chennai has become home to spicy North Indian, sweet Bengali, rich Punjabi and many other regional foods. With a huge number of restaurants catering to diverse dishes from other states, people can enjoy any regional dish of their choice during their trip to Chennai. Bay Leaf restaurant on Ambujambal Street in Alwarpet is famous for its mouthwatering Punjabi and Bengali foods. Some of the other well-known Indian cuisine restaurants are Breeze Hotel at Chetpet, 16th Century at Mylapore, Dhaba Express on Cenotaph Road and Hotel Ashoka at Pantheon Street in Egmore.
Chennai cuisine is not just limited to traditional and regional cuisines, but has extended its platter to a diverse range of dishes that caters to the globetrotters from all over the world. Although European, Chinese and Continental cuisines have been an integral part of city’s a la carte, Mexican, Thai, Italian, Japanese and Korean have slowly and successfully made their to the menu cards here. Some of the popular international cuisine restaurants are La Madeleine on Kasturi Rangan Estate, China Town at Cathedral Road and Cedars in Kotturpuram.