The mango lassi at Vishalatchi Food Catering (18 Jalan Scott. 012 348 3034) masquerades as a meal on its own. Ripe mangoes, scoops of yoghurt and ice are blitzed to a creamy consistency. Ask the staff to add a pinch of ground cardamom, if that fancies you.
It’s hard to disentangle the relationship between grittiness and delicious things. Vishal Food & Catering is evocative of a ‘mess hall’, boasting long rows of tables teeming with diners chattering over banana leaf rice. True to their Chettinad roots, Vishal specialises in spicy cuisine hailing from Tamil Nadu.
KL’s chapattis have seen better days, and proof is in the dough at Authentic Chapati Hut. Service is speedy without sacrificing flavour or soul.
Get educated on Punjabi sweets – laddu, palkhova, gulab jamun and more – by the roadside stalls from either Patiala Punjabi Sweets (in front of Kuil Sri Maha Muneswarar. 014 623 7490) or Restaurant Srinivasa Bhavan (21 Jalan Scott. 016 636 3751).
Modernity and radicalism prevail in the curation of Wei-Ling Gallery, which showcases works by local luminaries such as Anurendra Jegadeva, Chin Kong Yee, Ivan Lam, Zulkifli Yusoff and Yee I-Lann.
Stock up on cooking essentials such as cinnamon, fennel seeds, cloves, thyme and curry powder from Jai Seetharam Store (23 Jalan Scott) which are bound to assault the senses.
Walk several doors down from Vishal and you’ll find a bookstore with no signage. Books sit higgledy-piggledy at a corner but those enshrined on shelves proffer gems like a Ghandi biography and Niromi de Soyza’s ‘Tamil Tigress’.
Marvel at the Sri Kandaswamy Kovil built in 1902, a potent symbol to the local Ceylon Tamil community.The temple’s architecture is inspired by Sri Lanka’s Nallur Kandaswamy Kovil. Only Hindus are allowed into the praying halls but you can steal a glimpse of the interior during major festivals like Thaipusam.
After Jalan Scott, visit Taman Cheras
The greatest thing about Taman Cheras, also known as Yulek, isn’t the food. That sounds almost blasphemous, but what really defines Yulek is the decades-old rumah pangsa – the four-storey, walk-up flats.