This iconic restaurant is reputed for its authentic South Western Indian Coastal delicacies. Karavalli has, over the years, delighted gourmets, critics and celebrities alike with the aromas and flavors of home-food recipes from the states of Kerala, Karnataka, Goa and Maharashtra. Synonymous with best-in-class food and service in Bengaluru, Karavalli has also been voted amongst The S. Pellegrino World’s Best Restaurants.
Me being from coastal Karnataka , was curious to taste the dishes from my region and was skeptical about the taste . But when the food did arrive, i was super impressed by the authenticity of the cuisine they nailed. They tasted exact the way our grannys used to make which is a rare in restaurant style cooking .Each dish offered a range of flavours that never failed to surprise .
The chef Naren Thimmaiah was happy to hear this and revealed the secret that chef’s were actually sent to the kitchens of traditional homes to learn the authentic recipes from the place of origin.Even the spices , raw material,herbs etc are sourced from the native region to maintain the authenticity . Many dish was cooked on wood fire to retain the original taste and mechanized stone grinders have been added to preserve the robust flavors of the coconut rich masalas , which can be easily damaged by the high heat of mixes . Hats off to the Chef !!
As you pass through the huge wooden gates , you are welcomed by a lush green garden , tiny waterfall , rustic shades , cool breezy air .
In the midst of this garden is a beautiful bungalow constructed in the traditional architecture of coastal south India .
You have 3 seating arrangements to choose from , in the garden / indoor area with AC / indoor without AC . Whichever you choose i am sure you would love the ambiance and the smiling staff will make it more better.
My personal favorite was the gazebo in the garden area.
As you seat in your table , first arrives a bowl filled with Jasmine water to clean your hand and another small bowl having organic Jaggery to clean your palate . This was so unique …
The food is served on steel banana-leaf shaped plates covered with real banana leaves (bale ele oota).
We started our elaborate dinner with few coastal nibbles and cocktails to sip in between…
Tiger Prawns Roast – Fresh tiger prawns tossed in Kerala spice mix
Meen Eleittad – Marinated Black Pomfret , wrapped in a banana leaf and pan fried to perfection…
Koli Barthad – Coorgi style roasted chunks of chicken
I was the only vegetarian in our group for the day . All my friends were enjoying feasting these delicacies . They loved them to the core especially Tiger prawns roast, meen eleittad and kane kaidina . Though i didn’t taste any of them but these coastal specialties are the essence of Karavalli and i had to give a virtual treat to all my non veg readers. Hope you enjoy them as i did clicking them .They were served so beautifully in an antique traditional crockery .Then came the veg nibbles .
Oggaraneda Aritha Pundi -Steamed rice dumplings flavored with coconut and cumin and later tossed in spice powder.It made a lovely snack . The dumplings were soft and had taken in the flavors.
Pachakkai Varuthathu – Crisp fried raw banana, tossed in a tangy kerala spice mix. It was crispy
Pathrode – the famous South Karnataka dish was not new to me . A spicy paste made up of rice and spices, are applied generously onto Colocasia leaves and then steam cooked to perfection. Later they are cut into pieces and lightle shallow fried to enhance the taste . This was really tasty and tasted just like it was made in my home .
Seeing that i didn’t get much starters in veg , the chef specially ordered for me
Gobi Kempu Bezule – a crispy mild spicy deep fried cauliflower .Byadgi chilli souced from Dharwad gives a traditional mild spiciness to this dish .
As we were savoring the delicious starters, Chef Naren Thimmaiah narrated some very interesting kitchen stories from his 25 years experience at Karavalli… We were surprised to know that menu of Karavalli was almost the same from past 25 years and still the place is crowded … authenticity is the hallmark..
For the main course, it was
Allapuzha Meen Curry – Seer fish, simmered in a moderately spiced gravy of ground coconut, ginger and raw mangoes…
Kozhi Malliperlan – Boneless pieces of chicken and vegetables, in tender gravy of coconut milk and fresh spices.
Attirachy Ularthu – Lamb cubes ,cooked with onion ,tomato and fresh spices from Travancore , Kerala
Then came my favorite ,
Mavinakayi Mensukkai – a spicy tangy sweetish mango curry . Karavalli gives the recipe courtesy of the dish to Havyaka community South Karnataka .The dish was so perfect.. a lovely blend of the sweet and sour, i relished it with aapam ,idiyappam and rice.
Pachakkari Stew – seasonal vegetables gently simmered in creamy coconut milk…It was so creamy with mild flavors and perfect thickness .
Urullakkizhangu Roast – Baby potatoes roasted with onion ,tomato, chilli and a blend of several spices…
The curries were served with a choice of Malabar Paratha, Aapam, Idiappam or plain steamed rice
Live Aapam Making….
To sip between our meal we were served one of the best tasting hot and spicy rasam .
Last but not the least was dessert . We were served
Bibinca – A goan multi layered cake dish served with vanilla ice cream. I tasted it first time . The mild flavor was tempting .
Dodol: Rice cooked gently in coconut milk and jaggery. The usage of organic jaggery had given the dish a distincy taste and flavor .
Elaneer payasam: Chillied tendercoconut pudding…
Banana and caramel ice cream – this was surprisingly tasty . I was so full that i rejected it . But the chef insisted to taste it and i am so happy i listened to him.
Each dessert was so unique , not overtly sweet or overpowering — a nice finish to a lovely meal ..
With great food, warm service, homely atmosphere and a rustic décor, Karavalli is certainly worth a visit. I will surely recommend The Gateway Karavalli for your next dining experience.Thank s karavalli for having me over .
My rating : 4.8 / 5 .
Cost for 2 : Rs 3500 ( approx )
Gateway Hotel, 66,Residency Road, Bangalore
Phone number : 080 49652649
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