India’s long coastline has always been famous for its cuisine. Uppu Munchi, a new restaurant in Yeshwantpur, has opened its doors to coastal food lovers in the city, serving up some to-die-for dishes from Karnataka, Goa, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.

Salt and chillies

“It is the simple yet unique combination of uppu (salt) and munchi (chillies) that makes the south Indian coastal food a gastronomic delight,” says chef Kamala Kanan. Coconut milk, curry leaves, ginger, garlic, coriander seeds and a dash of chillies provide rich flavours to the food.

I am welcomed with a glass of keralleyam, a refreshing drink made from coconut water, lemon and mint.

What follows are classics: meen pollichathuAnjal fish flavoured with spices and kokum, wrapped in banana leaf and smoked, crab masala – a Mangalore speciality consisting of a whole crab tossed with freshly pounded spices and chilli paste, and kori gassi, a signature chicken curry also from Mangalore, complemented with neer dosa.

The chef tells me that these are his signature dishes and no one who comes to the restaurant leaves without ordering a plate.

A meal in this restaurant is incomplete without a glass of solkadi, a delicious salty drink made from kokum and tender coconut milk. But your meal isn’t over until you gorge yourself on a certain dessert: elaneer payasam, a delicate sweet blend of milk and coconut. It is the perfect grand finale to a sumptuous meal.

Uppu Munchi is a must-visit for an authentic coastal culinary experience. A meal for two could cost anywhere between Rs. 800 and Rs. 1,200.

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