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Distinct cuisine traditional touch

Kuchipudi, the latest restaurant at Fortune Katriya Hotel, offers Telugu cuisine

Ethnic food is the hallmark of this specialty restaurant — Photos: P.V. Sivakumar

Chef recommends

Chinta chops
Kobbari kodi kurma
Kuchipudi special kodi
Chikkudu vankayya kura
Yerra chapa
Ginger ice cream

THE DÉCOR of the restaurant is traditional named as it is after the classical dance form of Andhra Pradesh. Kuchipudi is the latest restaurant in the city opened at Fortune Katriya Hotel (By WelcomGroup located off Raj Bhavan road, Somajiguda. Tel: 23325678 ) serving Telugu cuisine. The ethnic effect is visible in the roof (which resembles the roof of old countryside homes), rosewood pillars, old furniture (tables and chairs like one found at grandparents homes a few decades ago) and lanterns hanging from the roof (which has reapers too).

Waiters too are dressed in traditional attire - dhoti, kurta and angavastram (but wearing shoes) and they welcome visitors with the customary namaskaram.

This is a speciality restaurant and its signature line is "For Truly Telugu Taste". And keeping in line with this, the food is culled from various regions of the State, although there is a predominance of cuisine from Andhra regions. Executive Chef Narayan Rao has brought out delicacies which are normally not featured in restaurants. Some of the items feature in wedding menus or as part of daily cuisine of the households. "The menu was worked out after a survey of various restaurants serving Andhra food in the city," says chef Narayan Rao.

On arrival the guests are served paanakkam or buttermilk, while the women are given flowers.

The menu card offers a fair amount of dishes for the veggie brigade despite the tilt towards non-veg cuisine. The thali is available only at lunch time. While the veg thali is priced at Rs. 175 plus taxes, the non-veg one costs Rs. 195 plus taxes.

The a la carte menu is fairly sumptuous with adequate number of dishes in the meat, chicken, seafood and veg section. If you are game for tasting some old delicacies check out Noovula kodi, (sesame flavoured fresh chicken), karvepaku kodi (chicken marinated in curry leaf spice powder and simmered dry), kanda vada (yam cooked with spices), punukulu (lentil batter grilled in a special container), thanda korma and Kuchipudi special kodi (both specialities of the restaurant), kaju munnakai iguru (drumstick and cashewnut curry), kanda bachchali koora (yam with leafy vegetable), mukkala pulusu and dibba roti. "We also serve some egg curries as well. The thanda korma is served at room temperature," says Chef Narayan Rao.

A number of chutneys and pickles form part of the menu. Not to miss the ghee of course.

Spices are an integral part of the cuisine. "While I was doing some research I found that some of them are good for health. For instance, red chillies help in coagulation of blood and cools our bodies (perhaps that explains the high red chilli content of food in most parts of Andhra as it faces extreme heat), coriander seeds are a cholesterol cutter and fenugreek is good for the heart)," adds the Chef.

For the sweet lovers there is Kakinada khaja, semiya payasam and the traditional parvanam. The surprise dessert is ginger ice cream. The rates are not five-star. The curries are priced between Rs. 60 and Rs. 225 (for the prawns). The rice items cost between Rs. 75 and Rs. 135.

So if you are one of those who love to tuck in wholesome Andhra food, Kuchipudi is the destination.


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