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I'm not sure that ITC's management agrees with me but I think that Dakshin, as a concept, is past its sell-by date. The Dakshin Coastal, a re-tweaking of the original concept, marks an improvement but I don't think it goes far enough.That said, the food, drawn from the Southern states, can be excellent. Individual dishes, such as the pandi curry from Coorg or the spicy Andhra biryani are well-executed and it is hard to eat badly here. Even the room has a certain functional elegance and the service is good.It's just the concept of an old-fashioned greatest-hits-of-South-India that I don't like.
Many would say that you really can?t screw up South Indian food but we beg to differ. The cuisine although looks simple, has in it sheer complexity that baffles us. The amount of finesse used to bring the spices together and get that perfect balance of flavours takes some serious skills. Not many South Indian serving restaurants can claim to achieve that intricate balance but there are some places on our gourmet map that have earned their spot by consistent great food. ITC Maratha plays host to several fantastic restaurants including a South Indian one too. The place goes by traditional name of ?Dakshin Coastal?, which in itself explains everything. This establishment is one of the best South Indian serving restaurants in Mumbai and takes deep pride in it. Dakshin Coastal is a decadent experience. Take time with it.
If you have a foodie friend who lusts after seafood then take him to Dakshin Coastal. After all, its menu comprises mostly of dishes from South Indian coastal belt. You will find dishes from Kerala and Chettinad regions here with emphasis put on succulent seafood preparations. The menu is not excessively long, which is a good thing. Whatever is there, is cooked to perfection. Skip the alcoholic drinks and start your meal with something traditional to drink. You have a choice between rasam or neer more. Nibble alongside on, vadai, kozhi roast, sundal, neetha kori, Iyer?s specials and karwar yetti fry. With couple of idiappams or veechu parotta relish the curries. Pandi roast, chapa pulusu, tarkari padhartha, meen jeeri meri, ishtoo, patchakari stew, kai pidi chops, meen kujit, nadang kozhi curry, gutti vankai koora, nandu melagu peratti and malla yetti gassi, will do wonderfully.
End your evening by sampling some of Dakshin Coastal?s traditional regional desserts. Savour a morsel of, basundi, kadal pacchee, elaneer payasam, adai pradhaman and badam halwa. A cup of South Indian filter coffee will act as the perfect conclusion to a grand evening. Dakshin Coastal is not at all cheap but the experience will be sublime. To convey the South Indian theme small details are added to transport one to the regional restaurants of South India. From banana leaf lined metal plates to brass diyas to natraj statue, everything reminds you of South India. The look is elegant and classy, as expected of a posh five star establishment.