CC - Jonathan McIntosh
Time Out rating:
Time Out says
A veritable institution, this 80 seat restaurant is in an entirely different class from the rest; a chain with branches in more than 10 countries, specialising in vegetarian dishes from Southern India. But this isn’t a curried version of McDonald’s, rather the squeaky clean surroundings and fresh ingredients put Saravanaa Bhavan above the neighbourhood’s collection of greasy spoons.
The attractive space is done out in design sofas, black tables and big windows, giving more of a Japanese vibe than anything else, though the metal drinking cups and flock of busy waiters feel more authentic. The menu comes with helpful descriptions of the dishes to aid navigation through the array of appetising options; a dozen dosa (garnished lentil-based pancakes), numerous rice and vegetable dishes, four different kinds of bread (naan, parotta, poori and chapatti) and even a few wok dishes.
If you want to try everything, the best solution is to share a whole bunch of dishes – some of them are seriously filling, especially if you drink a lassi at the same time. If you do only taste one dish, it should be the fabulous mutter paneer, a mix of peas, cheese, onions and spices.
Saravana Bhavan 170 rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis