The Gokarna Diaries – Part 1

After the intense exam stress, I decided that as soon as the exams were done, I needed a trip and what better destination than GOKARNA. Beautiful beaches, adventurous treks and a quiet town with temples at every nook and corner. Its a perfect blend of ‘A laid back chilling Destination’ and spirituality!

How I got there?

From Bangalore(Took a bus from Chennai to Bangalore) I took a night bus*VRL Travels*. Its almost a 12-13 hours journey. The road starts off good, but gets a little bumpy and rough towards Gokarna.

Day 1 :

+ Reached around 7:30 and took an auto to the Zostel which is a 10 min ride. (Rs 100-80)

+ As my check in was only at 12 PM, I chilled around the Zostel for a while. Had breakfast from the Mantra cafe, freshened up,Put all my luggage in the common room and decided to start my Trek towards Half Moon(Got too dark for Paradise) 😀 !

+The first beach was Kudle! It was a 1.2Km walk from Zostel. Beautiful and happening, and laden with shacks! Dont forget to try out the pizzerias there!

At Kudle Beach

+ The Second one was a 30min walk(Almost 3 kms and it was too hot)and hence had to take an auto there(Rs 70).The Om beach was more of a people beach, with tourists and locals alike. The Rocky beach had the shape of the symbol Om and hence the name . Jam Packed with many shacks and small beach stores( I got a Shiva tee from there 😁),Om gives us a wide variety for ambience and dining/Chill.

+ The next 2 were the Half moon beach and the Paradise beach. The half moon beach is quite a trek from om beach. Just 2kms, but will take around 15-20 mins to trek through.(The terrain is a bit rough and narrow with shrubs and small trees all around,so make sure to be careful,and also shoes/boots are preferred). But its worth the struggle! It is a Beautiful beach with still water and perfect solitude.I even ended up having a good swim😁. It has 2-3 shacks that serves good food and and a perfect ambience to just sit down and take a moment to appreciate everything around you.
(P.s : Even during the trek, take a minute or 2 to just stop and enjoy the ocean scenery.)

+ It had already become 5pm, and The sunset Kudle wasn’t to be missed. So I started my trek back. But unfortunelty I couldn’t reach Kudle by the time. But Nevertheless, the sunset was still an absolute beauty to watch from the rocky shores of Om ! ( Actually It was the better of the 2)

+ And finally, around 8:30,I got back to the Zostel! Exhausted but with a feeling of accomplishment, I checked in into my Dorm, Arranged up my luggage, Took a nice long Hot water bath and had a Desi Thali dinner from the Mantra cafe, right under the star lit night sky, while breathing in the ocean.
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…... To read about Day 2, make sure to watch out for the second part !

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A Vegetarian dining with an ambience : Hamsa

Hamsa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Love to dine with a Royal In-House Ambience ? Well Hamsa is just the place! I had heard about this place a few months back from a friend. The lovely ambience with a variety of tasty vegetarian dishes (rates on the higher side, I must say) was a very popular opinion! I just had to try this place out. So myself, along with some of my foodie buddies decided to give this place a go!

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Location and Ambience :

Hamsa is located on the Gandhi nagar road, Adyar. The Entrance to the restaurant is via the ground floor that takes you to the Restaurant through a lift. The first thing you notice is the beautiful, cozy and lavish wall arts and decor! Tables are provided with chairs and sofas, and decorated with silver cutlery. The entire restaurant has a dim lighting that goes pleasantly with the surroundings. People visiting in a group are recommend to book as the place is relatively small but madly popular and hence gets easily crowded. Overall, Hamsa presents a brilliant ambience and a special Kudos to the designer!

The service is friendly, kind and humble.They do take a few extra minutes to serve, but they make sure to explain their dishes well and suggest the best among the choices.

The Food :

Even before ordering, the first thing you notice is the crown-like silverware present on your table. Open it and voila! There’s sits a complimentary (and yummy ) Gulab jamun as a welcome waiting for you! ( Such a “Sweet” welcome xD)

We decided to start off with the soups and starters! (Make sure to notice the creative names)

The soups,We tried the Tomato Shorba, Narangi and pumpkin Shorba and Green peas Shorba out of which the Narangi and Pumpkin Shorba was very different and tasty!

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Tomato Shorba, The pumpkin and Naarangi Shorba and the Green peas Shorba

For starters, we tried The Vazhalaipoo fritters, Paneer saunfya,Baby corn milagu pirratal , Cheese kurkure and Bharwan dingri kebab! Apart from the Vazhalaipoo fritters(which tasted very similar to normal fries!!) and the cheese kurkure, all the other starters were delicious! especially the paneer and the kebab!

Now moving on to the main course!

We ordered a Paneer Gulmarg(which was amazing!!!), Gobi Dum Mussalam , Bhagarwaj Subzi,Dal Makhanni(most mainstream out of all the curries) and Kofta Brindavan! I was a bit confused on identifying which was which!And also got confused between them, but I can tell you truthfully that all the dishes were delicious!( Personally i never realised vegetarian dishes could be made this good with such varieties! ) To go along with the curries, we also ordered some breads : The cheese and olive Naan, Paneer kulcha, Garlic Naan and Butter naan! (Make sure to get the Cheese and Olive naan onto your to-eat list!)

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Now moving onto the best part, The beverages and the desserts ❤ !

They have quite a distinct variety of drinks and desserts!

To drink I would recommend trying the Thandai( which is chill spicy milk with almonds) , The Panagam (Its a mixture of ginger and tamarind!It was a different blend of flavours, so I don’t expect everyone to enjoy it) and the Panchamirtham(Sweet,very sweet!I could make out the taste of Banana,vanilla,dates and cardamom!)

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THANDAI!

For dessert, we tried :-

The Gulab Jamun Brulee : A truly amazing dessert! It an infused creamy custard along with Gulab jamun and burnt sugar on top. (Must try)

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Gulab Jamun Brulee

Shahi Tukda : Fried bread topped with reduced milk(milkmaid) and garnished nuts! The dessert was simple but tasted good!

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Shahi Tukda

Anjeer aur Adrak ka halwa(Fig and ginger Halwa) : It was too sweet and thick for my liking… I couldn’t even have more than a spoonful of it.

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Lychee aur Thande naariyal ka kheer : Kheer is a main dessert all around kerala! Be it a major festival or even a small greeting,kheer is always served! But i have never even imagined such combination! Lychee and coconut! and It was such a beautiful combination! (Must try )

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LYCHEE + COCONUT KHEER

South Indian Filter coffee and Rose petal flavoured Ice creams : I actually expected it to be the coffee and rose milk flavour, But trust me,it isn’t, especially the filter coffee flavour! All coffee lover – make sure to give this one a try!

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Filter kappi and rose-petal flavoured ice creams

Hamsa has quite a lot to offer! And it is not only the vast variety of Vegetarian dishes, but also the beautiful ambience and tasteful decors!

And Hamsa made me believe that Vegetarian food can also be exciting and surprising!

Overall Hamsa is a brilliant experience! With good service,good food and good Ambience! And a special mention to the lovely desserts!

TheFoodFella rating : 4.5/5 !

Happy Fooding 😀

Tff

How about a new veggie project in Chennai : The Food Project !

The Food Project Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Been planning to try out this place for quite a long time. Especially with the name “The food project”. I have been reading a lot of positive reviews and was curious to check out the place. So here goes!

Location and Ambience :

Located on the sterling road, Nungampakkam, situated in between the The bombay fries and the Westfield waffles, The Food Project is a small cozy eatery that offers quite a limited yet an amusing range of dishes. Its a small space with a seating of around 10-12 (around 4-5 tables). The walls are filled with funny food quotes and attractive lighting.Even though the place was quite small, it felt pretty simple and cozy .Maybe because it was a weekday evening, it wasnt too crowded when we visited the place. But overall, the TFP had a nice, cozy vibe to it.

*The TFP follows a self service policy. so dont expect a waiter to come over anytime soon 😅! *

The Food :

The menu is quite different. Take a few minutes to read the menu out.
(Vegetarian and simple)
We decided to go for :-

The Paneer Tikka Tartlet : 4 small bread tarts served with loads of Garlic paste, Cottage cheese and Tikka seasoning and paneer on top. It was a little small, probably a mouthfull each, but it tasted pretty good. Quite an apt starter.

The Marinara Paneer Breadizza : This was my favourite dish here. Its the concept of a bread pizza within a mug filled with veggies and pizza toppings on a bread base (A Bread-iZza !) The Marinara paneer was filled with paneer, cheese, onions and more cheese. It was very tasty and I would definitely recommend it.

The Exotic maggi pasta Mug : A mix of Maggi and Macoroni pasta in maggi masala and a little bit of white sauce. The dish was decent. But instead of bringing out the pasta, it just bought out a large flavour of the maggi. So basically “Maggi in a fancy Mug”

The Fox berry drink : Remember the Fox candy. well they made the Blackcurrent Fox candy into a drink. Nothing too great, but was quite a refreshing one.

The Crackling Chocolate sandwich :

“TFP signature dish”. Its a crispy sandwich filled with chocolate. And I dont mean just in the inside, EVERYWHERE! The inside is filled with chocolate sauce, the oustide with melted chocolate flakes and the entire plate seasoned with Chocolate flakes. I didn’t find it to taste anything different than expected , but its definitely a chocolate lover’s feast!

P.S : Dont forget to place the empty mugs in the ‘Waste mug section’ and to throw the used plates into the dustbin placed inside. (If any confusions, just follow the directions given there ! )

The Food Project is a place you should try when you want to try different and good vegetarian food for a very cheap cost. It is pocket friendly, offers fast service and also serves above average food.

Thefoodfella rating for The Food Project : 3.8/5

– Happy Fooding 😀

– Tff

Mascarpone cafe – The Getaway with great ambience.

Mascarpone Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Mascarpone cafe is a one of those romantic getaway restaurants that offers both great food and a great ambience. Its a pretty good spot not only for couples, but also for families/friends(5-6 people) to come and spend some time to have food and chill !

The Location and Ambience :

This restaurant is located on the side of the East Coast Road.It is on the left side of the road while travelling from Chennai to Mahabalipuram/Pondicherry. The restaurant has both indoor and outdoor seating.The indoor isn’t much to talk about. Its just a closed room with a capacity of 6-8 people maximum. But the outdoor seating is amazing! You can either choose to sit in the open and dine on the grass in the outdoor,or you can get your own cottage seating (for 2-4 people) which offers you good privacy (Perfect for a candlelight dinner 😀 ).The area isn’t all that big,but they make it look spacious with the arrangements.They have soft covers of all the latest pop songs being played in the background. The service is quite friendly and courteous. They make sure to give their guests privacy and yet get you the food on time!

Being a weekday, there wasn’t much of a crowd. And according to the management, peak time is usually during the weekend evenings.

The Food :

Now moving on to the important part, the food. Since we already had a few starters from the Moonrakers,Mahabalipuram, we couldn’t eat a lot. But that didn’t stop us from trying. We decided to try their Honey glazed chicken and the Spinach Ravioli. The honey glazed chicken was a bit sweet, crunchy and tasted pretty good. The spinach ravioli was bland. It tasted how it should, but was a bit too bland.(Authentic Italian!) I enjoyed the dish, but maybe they should consider spicing it up a bit for the Indian foodies xD. Now finally we decided to order the famous Mango pannacota. It tasted lovely, it was soft, creamy and just firm enough to hold the cream together. Also had a great mango flavour. For all mango lovers, this would be a treat!

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Honey glazed chicken

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Spinach Ravioli

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Mango Panna cotta

The prices were a bit on the higher side, but I felt the quantity for the mains were pretty good. The dessert, was delicious and tasted as good as it looked.

Overall, good food to go along with the great ambience. And If you are searching for a place to eat, away from the hustle bustle of the city with a date, I would definitely recommend this place! The Mascarpone cafe gets a foodfella rating : 4.2/5

-Happy fooding 😀

-Tff

“Vaayil kappalodum” :The Paaykapal review.

Paaykappal Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Finally got a chance to try out the new authentic Kerala cuisine restaurant,The Paaykapal. Launched by entrepreneurs Abraham and Lakshmy, the restaurant offers a wide variety of tasty Kerala dishes from Vegetable stew to Kaada fry(quail) and offers both vegetarians and Non-vegetarians many options to choose from. (It also offers a range of north Indian and Chinese cuisines)

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Continue reading ““Vaayil kappalodum” :The Paaykapal review.”

“73% delicious,27% also delicious”: Flint’s Pizza

Have a look at this review of Flint’s Pizza, Thuraipakkam, Chennai on @Zomato — http://zoma.to/review/38111896

Always been a sucker for good thin crust pizzas, and yet again found another place(This time in Chennai) which not only serves tasty thin crust,but also ‘wood fired oven’ made pizzas! So I decided to try out this place with a bunch of my foodie friends one rainy Thursday evening! Continue reading ““73% delicious,27% also delicious”: Flint’s Pizza”

The “Dine out” at Chili’s!

Chili's American Grill & Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Okay so before I start off with this one, I have to say I actually never imagined going to Chili’s to dine, becauee I always thought of Chili’s as one of those overrated, high priced restaurants (Maybe I wasnt too off point either). But I am actually quite happy that I gave the place a try 😀 And also would like to give a special thank you to zomato gold and The dine out app for helping us keep it economical!

Continue reading “The “Dine out” at Chili’s!”

The Thattu Idli kada.

Tamil Nadu has always been famous for its Dosas and idlis. Be it an early morning Onion Uttapam for breakfast or a Masala dosa for dinner, they make sure that they always serve it hot and tasty. But how about trying out the same from a Banglore based shop? And that’s how we found out the “Vaishnavaa’s Banglore special Thattu Idli and chat shop“.

Continue reading “The Thattu Idli kada.”

Eurofoodie series – Belgian Waffles

What’s a Belgium trip without trying their authentic handmade chocolates and trying out their famous waffles. So upon recommendation from Devi, I decided to try out this waffle place near the ‘piqmanneqin’ (which is the small statue of a child peeing into a fountain, which has quite a funny history to it) during our tour stop in Brussels called ________. It’s basically a ‘make it yourself’ waffle store.(The entire city is filled with them). You start by selecting the kind of waffle you want as base(normal,Belgian or wafflecone) and then you start filling them with toppings which range from Nutella, whipped cream, sauces, different types of ice creams to nuts, fruits,crumbs etc.So my mom, dad and I decided to get 2. For the first one, we decided to go with the Belgian waffle topped with Nutella, strawberries and mokka(coffee) ice cream. And the second one was a normal waffle with strawberries and kiwi with chocolate sauce. The waffles were really good. Probably one of the best I have ever had. Especially the 1st one. Not just because it had Nutella, but the waffle got soggy from the ice cream and that just made it taste better along with the strawberries and Nutella.

The 2nd one was maybe a bit too fruity for me, and the waffle crust was harder, but I still did enjoy it (My parents seemed to enjoy it better though).
It’s not everyday that you get to enjoy Belgium Waffles right from the busy streets of Brussels. It definitely was one hell of an experience !!

Foodie achievement unlocked 🙂

Keep following the Eurofoodie series for more 🙂

Happy Fooding guys 😀

-Tff

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