Phone: +91 7824868420
Address: 25/11 Cenotaph 2nd Lane, Teynampet, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Time: 12 Noon – 11 PM
Meals for two: Rs. 1,500
Cuisines: North Indian, South Indian, Bengali, Maharashtrian, Rajasthani
Facilities: Home Delivery, Indoor Seating, Table booking recommended
Bharat Bistro, Teynampet, Chennai: Decor
A ground and first-floor place, Bharat Bistro is different. In that, it is a lot of this and that. There is a large abstract yellow peacock hanging from the ceiling that nobody can miss. If you look at it from below (I did) you will see Bharat, signifying their cuisine. Unabashedly Bharati.
Then, there is a green wall on one side, a wood and metal staircase, and plenty of glass letting natural light in. Upstairs, the main focus is on the colored glass lanterns.
I do like the Khurja pottery used to serve and eat in. Those flower patterned glasses used for water are definitely a statement. I’m told they have been sourced directly from Khurja.
Bharat Bistro, Teynampet, Chennai: Food
On crowded days, expect the service to be slow. I like the puffed jowar and barley salad better than I like the mulligatawny soup. The salad says what it is and delivers: seasoned hung curd, cherry tomatoes and pomegranate arils add touches of juicy sweet crunchiness. The barley grains are well cooked, adding their softness to the puffed crunch of the jowar. In comparison, the poor soup tries to be different, but the ‘puffed’ rice with masala gives a gritty under cooked texture in my mouth. Also, the coconut milk has turned a tad oily.
Chowringhee in a box has four sections and two big, puffed luchis (Bengali puris made of maida and fried in jharna ghee) on top.Below, there are puchkas, singada, jhalmuri and ghugni for the luchi. My vote goes to the puchka. They have the crunch. Paani is well balanced in its flavors, sweetness and tang. I could definitely eat more. It, by far, overshadows the other three.
Parsis are great lovers of eggs. So, this salli per eedu cupcake has me intrigued. And they love the crunch from the salli (thin strips of deep-fried potato). Oh, and they also love their sauce. I half expect the cupcake to be savory, and they are! Beaten eggs with salt and masala salli, baked in the cupcake mould. Another side of the same plate has a poached egg sitting on a nest of salli. Naturally, I pierce it open and watch the yolk ooze all over my salli, egging it up nicely. This one I like. The sauce is also home-made using the special Parsi vinegar.
Reddish brown and shiny, the tender lamb pasand is all about balance. Locally sourced, the meat morsels let the overnight marinade in masalas reach deep within, evenly distributing the flavors. The final dunk in egg and dab of butter only adds to the smoky flavors from the tandoor. A complicated process, yes. But well worth the labour involved.
Goan bebinca. If there is one dessert you must have, go with this layered one. It takes technique, time and patience. It also takes a lot of restraint and experience to make the perfect one. This one in front of me, that I’m peeling the thin layers off, is… perfect.
Bharat Bistro, Teynampet, Chennai: Plus & Minus
The effort is all there. So is the research. But it is the execution of the recipes that go a bit awry at times.