Swadishta - MG Road, Bangalore

Not the kind of place one would review, but I'll try. Swadishta is an Andhra restaurant on MG Road. It's the best of the worst (read affordable) restaurants around. The Andhra Thali, Egg Fried Rice and Biryani are favourites, though they seem to have hiked the price on Egg Fried Rice and Biryani since we started going there. For the weak stomached, there's always curd rice.

I believe they also serve alcohol here, but I've never asked.

Blues rates it:
Food - Ok, a little spicy
Service - not bad
Price - reasonable
Decor - sit and eat kind of place
Overall - Another one of those daily meal places

Recommendation - Not a place to take a date, but if you're just out for lunch or dinner while working, then go there. Don't go there too often or you could screw up your stomach.

Getting there:
It's at the base of Mittal Tower on MG Road. Can't miss it.

Santrupti - Off MG Road, Bangalore

Note: The place is either undergoing renovation or has been demolished.

Santrupti was one of the first few places I had dinner at. It has nothing to offer, but if you're hungry and this is the only place around, go in and eat. It won't cost you much. They close at 10pm, but will serve you if you get in at 9:55.

The good stuff there is the bullet idli. 12 idlis in a bowl of sambar. Really good. I think it's a Monday special. The Kudubu is nothing special, and their weird Spring Roll Dosa is worth a miss. North Indian thali is okay, not worth the price and skip the soup. Dosas are okay too, but heavy on the oil. If you really want dosas, walk down to Adigas instead.

Note: Santrupti appears to be closed for renovation or demolition. It isn't clear which at the moment.

Blues rates it:
Food - okay
Service - okay
Price - easy on the pocket
Decor - sit and eat kind of place
Overall - good for a regular eating place until you get fed up of it.

Recommendation - If you like South Indian food, Santrupti is good, and it's cheap enough that you can make this one of your regular dining spots.

Getting there:
Go down MG Road towards Trinity Circle. Take a left at the circle, and it's the first entrance on your right, opposite the Taj. You'll have a hard time crossing the road.


Lalitha's Paratha - Dickenson Road, Bangalore

Lalitha's Paratha on Dickenson road is a reasonably large sized restaurant with AC, non-AC and secluded areas. They're famous for their parathas, as being one of the few places in Bangalore where one can get a good taste of north India. Unfortunately, they throw in too much oil to make their point.

They have a variety of parathas. Aloo (Potato), Gobi (Cauliflower), Mooli (Radish), Onion, Egg and Chicken. A paratha plate consists of two parathas and a bowl of curd. The chana masala, rajma curry and butter chicken go well with any of the parathas.

Lalitha's Paratha also serves very oily biryani. Choices are chicken, mutton and egg. I'd suggest skipping the biryani.

Blues rates it:
Food - Good, oily
Service - Decent
Price - Reasonable
Decor - just a place to sit and eat
Overall - If you like paratha, this is the place

Recommendation - good regular dinner place. Get home delivery if your order is more than Rs.150.

Getting there:
Go down Dickenson Road from Manipal Centre away from MG Road, towards Commercial Street. Follow the road as it turns left. Go past Wigan and Leigh college, and the sweet shop. Lalitha's Paratha is clearly visible across the road from the tempo parking area.

They also have a branch at Domlur, on the road behind Shanti Sagar. This one's much smaller though.

Noodle Bar - Bangalore Central

If you dropped in to 'the lounge on the second floor' at Bangalore Central, looking for comfortable seating, you'd be disappointed. Noodle Bar is a small place, far smaller than the outlet in Bombay. The tables have backless benches that take you back to school. It gets painful if you stay too long, but perhaps that's the idea.

The food at Noodle Bar is excellent. Especially good is the Hong Kong chicken and the shrimp based starters. Try the fried golden prawns. The various sizzlers are great, but their speciality is a DIY dish. They give you a sheet of paper with checkboxes against various catgories. Noodles, veg, non-veg, toppings, sauces, and grade of spice. You tick of what you want and hand it to the chef who'll toss it for you. We didn't get to taste ours.

The black pepper chicken noodles aren't very nice unless you add a good gravy to it. Japanese teriyaki fish is nice, but could do with a lot of improvement.

The service at this place isn't very good. The waiter at our table confused the orders and handed some of our dishes to the other end of the very long table. They also brought food and drinks in at different times, so half of us were still getting our drinks while the other half had finished theirs. It was the same with food, so there were people who had to sit and stare while those who'd gotten their food later finished. I ate right through :)

You can get a pair of chopsticks if you're interested.

Noodle Bar serves various interesting cocktails and soft drinks too.

Update: The entrances to the Noodle Bar and Bombay Blue have merged. There's now a single door to go to either, and you can order from either menu.

Blues rates it:
Food - Excellent
Service - Ok
Price - High
Decor - Minimal but smart
Overall - good food if you don't look at the price

Recommendation - Go there, but not in very large groups. It confuses the waiters.

Getting there:
Get to Bangalore Central at the junction of Residency Road and MG Road. Take the escalator up to the second floor. Noodle bar is straight ahead on the left. Don't go right, you'll hit Bombay Blue, which isn't recommended.


93 - Residency Road, Bangalore

Restaurant closed Ponnasamy's has opened in its place

93 is a little Indian/Chinese restaurant on Residency road. There are innumerable restaurants on Residency road, and 93 is one of the better ones. The food is good, the ambience is great, there's not too much of a crowd, and you can just sit there for hours talking.

We visited 93 on a Wednesday evening, which probably explains the lack of crowd. After having talked for well over an hour, we ordered. Dishes ranged from American Chopsuey, Tsing hai chicken and veg haka noodles, to makai palak (corn in spinach) and rotis.

The chopsuey was great, as was the tsing hai chicken. Haka noodles with garlic sauce was good too, but I prefer to have it with chicken.

If you're interested, they will also provide you with a pair of chopsticks.

The only problem was that they forgot to give us any cutlery, though considering how long we waited before ordering, they might not have been expecting us to eat.

Blues rates it:
Food - excellent
Service - good
Price - easy 50 rupee meal
Decor - very cool
Overall - great place to eat, or just chat

Recommendation - Go there, definitely.

Getting there:
Go down Brigade road to the junction of Residency road. Turn right onto Residency road and keep going up to the petrol pump. 93 is on your left, right opposite the pump. It's part of Hotel Algate, which is at #93 Residency Road, hence the name.

Phone: 91-80-25594786/7/8/9/6965/66