Heinz Gift Hamper

THE HEINZ gift hamper for this week goes to Mrs. R. Jignasa from Mint Street for her very interesting suggestions about some small eateries in Old Madras. Suggestions: She recommends the following places:

* Mahavir Bhojanashala — No.46, H.R. Goel Street, Chennai-79. Tel: 25331322 — serve Rajasthani & Gujarati meals with chapatis or dal - batti.

* Hari Om Bhavan — 162, Mint Street, Chennai-79. Tel: 25387065 — serves poori, aloo bhaji and

Bombay chutney.

* Hirji Maharaj has no shop but sells badam katli and kaju katli for 300/ kg and 240/ kg from a room. Address: No.20, Managappa Street, off NSC Bose Road, Opp Pani Plaza . Tel: 25383213.

* How can Andhra food be left behind? National lodge in Govindappa Naicken Street (take away lunch too) is excellent for their podis and gongura chutneys. No. 108, Govindappa Naicken Street. Tel: 25369508.

* For a Gujarati, nothing like having jalebi and gathia with chutney to begin the day with or samosas and kachori or "Patras" (arbi leaves rolled with masala in chanadal flour). This is Mansukh Mithaiwala, which sells sweets, savouries and lots of dry snacks. No. 313, Mint Street, Chennai -3.

* A little further from Mansukh is Novelty Tea House — 175, Mint Street. Tel: 25356355 — a small unassuming restaurant, serving tasty food like idli's, vadas, dosas, chaat items, milk shakes and ice creams, pizza, cheese toast etc. His lichi milk shake, pudina pulao and tava dosa are excellent. Home delivery is within 30 to 45 minutes, and home delivery is free if nearby. They also have a small shop attached, which sells khakras, pizza base, milk, pav, breads, jams, sauces, juices etc. They also sell idli's or coconut chutney by itself — 1/4 kg for Rs. 10/- or 1/2 litre sambhar for Rs. 10/-.

* Kakada Ramprasad in Mint Street and Agarwal Bhavan in Govindappa Naicken Street are excellent sweets and savoury shops. Agarwal Bhavan also serves masala milk, basundi, lassi and hot samosas with sweet and green chutney.

* Udipi restaurants — Prakash Bhavan and Krishna Prasad are in NSC Bose Road serving both North & South Indian fare.

(Rashmi Uday Singh is a food reporter,critic and author for 21 years. Food and health are her passions. )

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