Nothing invigorates the Chama clan quite like a wedding and impending nuptials saw various members arriving in Chennai. After animated discussions, mock-serious arguments and the passage of much time (2.5 hours tbe exact) we zeroed in on the culinary offerings of ID.
ID stands for Idly-Dosa and is located on the first floor of Sathyam Cinemas. The decor is dominated by black and white and the stainless steel cutlery complements the stark decor. The no nonsense attitude is carried onto their tiny little menu which quickly details their offerings. They offer a variety of south Indian snacks from the ubiquitous idli to more exotic items like adai and ulithiyal. (And of course, an array of chatnis)
As a starter or snack you should try the kirai vadai. This flat, spicy modification of a traditional vadai is sure to whet your appetite.
Though almost everything at ID is good, I recommend that you give idli and dosa the ditch when here. One of my regular orders at ID is the appam (Hoppers made with rice batter and some coconut milk). You can choose to have appam with milk, vegetable stew (my personal choice) or ulithiyal (a spicy side dish which has distinct overtones of tamarind).
Another favourite of mine is adai and more specifically the aviyal it is served with. Similar to dosa, adai is a thicker crepe made from a mixed-dal batter. The best part however, is the avial. A vegetable dish with a yoghurt and coconut base. ID's versions is mouth watering. The pesarratu, with upma stuffed inside is also a good choice.
Their sweets section is a little limited but don't leave without trying the kasi halwa. This pumpkin based sweet is soaked in ghee, butter and all things good. Not for the calorie conscious, this is sure to send you in raptures of sugar induced delight. Their kesari is pretty decent but I insist that you try the kasi halwa.
Wash it all down with a glass of spiced buttermilk.
The service at ID leaves much to be desired. They take forever to take your order and procuring a glass of water can often be a difficult task.
ID is one of my favourite South Indian restaurants in Chennai. It is infinitely better than the over-rated and over-priced Murugan Idli (clearly, I am not a fan). Sometimes, it is the best part about watching a movie in Sathyam Cinemas.
P.S: This post is dedicated to Thatha. We miss you so very much.
Pricing: Rs. 80-100 per person
Location: Sathyam cinemas, 1s floor, Royapettah, Chennai