This 76-year-old restaurant in Matunga has a loyal fan-base spanning across the city. Almost a city landmark, it started off with a menu of idli, vada, sada dosa, masala dosa, rava dosa, upma and other basic staples. Still the quintessential South Indian food place, the joint’s menu has expanded considerably to bring the best of the southern half of the subcontinent – from raagi dosa to appams. The filter kaapi (coffee) here is nothing short of perfect.
This 80-year-old restaurant is packed with eager patrons, no matter what time of day. And with almost legendary fast service, well-priced and delicious food, and possibly the most aromatic filter coffee, there’s no doubt as to why. They don’t have a printed menu, preferring to use a chalkboard that changes almost daily. But the staples, idli, dosa and uttappa, are always available. The idlis are melt-in-your-mouth fluffy, the dosas crisp and buttery, and the chutneys are loaded with the purest coconut taste.
If you are missing God’s Own Country and its coconut-heavy delicacies, then Hotel Deluxe in Fort will be nothing short of paradise for you. From mutton and chicken stews and vegetarian curries rich in coconut milk, to spectacular fried fish, squid and shrimp fry, or the classic sadhya served on a banana leaf – there’s almost nothing Deluxe does wrong. The Kerala style mutton fry paired with malabar paranthas is a life-changing culinary experience.
Serving some of the best Tamil vegetarian cuisine in the city, Dakshinayan is much pricier than similar joints in the rest of Mumbai. However, the food is amazing and the menu is extensive. They have a decent range of dosa offerings as well as rice and curry combinations, best paired with strong filter coffee or tea. They have multiple outlets in the city including in Juhu and Tardeo.
For wholesome, healthy, vegetarian Andhra food, there’s no better place in the city than this modest restaurant in Andheri. Made with freshly ground spices and vegetables, the food has all the welcome qualities of a scrumptious, home-cooked meal. The andhra meal and regular thali, comprising a range of vegetarian and lentil dishes paired with rice, are perfect for a weekend lunch, while the various classic South Indian classic dishes from pongal to cheese dosas are perfect for a workday lunch.
With fun cartoon murals adorning the walls, this small Mangalorean seafood restaurant in Fort has been one of Mumbai’s best places to celebrate South Indian seafood since 1961. The king pomfret tawa fry, the prawn koliwada and the crab entrees are all popular among regular customers. The menu expands beyond Mangalorean dishes to include Indo-Chinese and North Indian dishes as well.