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Yes, we may be in Karnataka, but if there is one cuisine that has made it as big as Indian Chinese, and that is from Andhra. Always famous for its high spice levels, heavy use of masalas and of course those green chilli laced biryanis and heavy rice meals, Andhra food enjoys the status of comfort food for just about everybody in this largely migrant population. If you are looking for some of the best places to indulge in some good Andhra food, here is a handy list of places for you to head to.
There are several branches of Nandini Deluxe across the city. You can never be too far away from one. Come at lunch hours and the restaurant can fill up as early as 12.30 PM and you will be standing in line for a seat. The Andhra meals here are extremely popular. They have the standard spread of mutton and chicken fries. What you should try are their Fish Fries when the season is right. Some of the branches of Nandini also have a bar attached and you can enjoy your favourite tipple along with your meal
Address: Nandini Deluxe, Near Petrol Bunk, Horamavu Main Road, Banaswadi, Bengaluru
Price: Rs. 700 for 2
Another one of those Andhra restaurant chains that can never disappoint you. The brand has multiple branches across the city, many of them with multiple floors each. Yet, come lunch or dinner, you will find the restaurant packed to the gills and people ever willing to wait to get in. The sorrel leaves dal served as part of the meals and known as pappu, is what the place is most famous for. The Mutton Sholay Kebabs are pepper laced and good. The biryani is available in large and small sizes depending on your appetite. The place also serves the Andhra meal in child portions.
Address: Nagarjuna Chimney, 21/22, 22nd Cross, 3rd Block, Jayanagar, Bengaluru
Price: Rs. 700 for 2
This Andhra restaurant on Church Street has been around for generations now. The décor has changed, the place has expanded, yet what remains constant is the great food it constantly churns out. The Andhra meals are the most popular option here. The Chicken Roast and Mutton Masala are popular accompaniments. Biryanis are available in large and small sizes. It also has a large vegetarian and egg-based fare on offer, however, these are not Andhra in the true sense of the term, but more North-Indian inspired.
Address: Bheema's, 31, Church Street, Bengaluru
Price: Rs. 750 for 2
This is one of the very few Andhra restaurants in the city that actually specializes in food from a particular region of Andhra Pradesh. In this case, Rayalseema. What it is particularly famous for is its large variety of biryanis. The Bilal Mutton Biryani, Chicken Pot Biryani and for the vegetarians – the Mushroom Biryani come highly recommended. If you want to go truly local, the Nati Koli Curry with Ragi Mudde is the way to go. There is designated parking which is a plus point. The restaurant can be packed and so timing yourself well is a good idea.
Address: Kritunga, 105, VTP, Industrial Layout, 5th Block, Koramangala, Bengaluru
Price: Rs. 635 per person
Another chain Andhra food joint that has firmly placed itself in the hearts of many Andhra food lovers. Of course, the first thing to order here is their biryanis – the chicken and mutton are quite popular and score really high on the spice factor. It is the boneless fish biryani that is the surprise here. It has flaky, soft well-cooked pieces of fish that cover the pot of biryani and is a pleasure to have. For those of you who like your spice, the Chilli Chicken, with a generous squeeze of lime is what you order. Not all outlets of Meghana do the Andhra meal and so if that is what you are aiming for, you will need to check in advance.
Address: Meghana Foods, 57/1, Jayalaxmi Chambers, Near Old Galaxy Theatre, Residency Road, Bengaluru
Price: Rs. 700
By now, you will know that this is a common refrain, the Andhra meals here are what you order when you want to go all the way. But this is a place that takes things quite a few steps ahead. They are working on a menu that tones down on the spices and is much more palatable to the younger, corporate crowd that they are aiming for. Try their Bamboo chicken, which despite having pounded chillies is quite the delight. The Chicken Sholay kebab has some beetroot in the marinade that makes it sweeter and delicious. The Carrot 65 is a complete surprise – roundels of carrots tossed with peanuts and garlic. A dish you will consider seconds of. And their Chicken Supreme boneless biryani is great for when you want a quick lunch.
Address: Nandhana Palace, 4034, HAL 2nd Stage, 100 Feet Road, Indiranagar. Bengaluru
Price: Rs. 800
Ruth Dsouza Prabhu has been a media professional for 18 years now, across multiple platforms. As a passionate F&B writer, she has interacted personally with internationally renowned names such as Marco Pierre White, Janice Wong, Chef Vivek Singh, Chef Vikas Khanna, Madhur Jaffrey, the late Tarla Dalal and many others for her stories. A highlight has been personal interviews with all three of the celebrity judges on Masterchef Australia. She is on several jury panels of food and beverage awards, is sought after for opinions in the field by publications and has her work published in well-known names such as The Hindu, Firstpost, HuffPost India, Condé Nast Traveller, NatGeo Traveller among many others.