Review – Dakshinayan
Matunga maybe Mumbai's South Indian food haven with the Madras Cafes and the Anand Bhavans but SOBO isn't far behind either. We have a our fair share of Udupi's the Shiv Sagars and Sukh Sagars, which are now by the way multi cuisine, with menus gloating of nachos, pizzas and Chinese food, and then we also have places like Dakshinayan that take South Indian Food more seriously and give it a kind of sophistication.
Located in Walkeshwar, opposite the Teen Batti Police station, Dakshinayan can give the phrase 'hole in the wall' a bit of a complex. Yes not a very big place, the décor too is minimal yet elegant. Terra-cotta crafts adorn the walls while brass curios of sacred cows and diyas are placed on panels. And while the upper half of the walls are painted white, the other half is dark brown giving an effect of thatched mud with Karnataka Chittara style white motifs running throughout in straight lines. The simplistic and understated décor makes for genteel ambience.
The place is pretty crowded for a week day like Thursday. Then again that's the benefit of being located in an area dominated by the community that made thepla a world delicacy. For Gujjus, weddings and eating out are daily affairs like brushing and excreting. No offense meant but a close observation of gujjus (most of my friends are Gujaratis – vaishnavs, jains, lohanas you name it), they are pretty much the reason why Mumbai's restaurants run and inflation is the way it is and they have no qualms about this claim to fame.
The waiter dressed in traditional South Indian muddus (lungis) gives us our menu, which enlists typical dishes like dosas, idlis, uthpams. We start with Steamed Idlis – fluffy and soft, served with fresh coconut chutney and spicy sambhar. We also ordered for a 'Ginger Ale', no they didn't serve the Schweppes one, but this one is also brilliant and refreshing answer to the Mumbai heat. The next was the mini idlis with Molgapudi Idlis – coined sized idlis coated with the famous gun powder chutney, mind blowing quite literally.
|Mysore Masala Dosa|
Next we move on to the dosas – the Mysore Masala was has an earthy flavor to it with mysore chutney coating inside and balmy potato bhaji filling. The Garlic Sada Dosa was a disappointment, it tasted kind of sour like the batter had gone rancid.
|Stew & Appam|
|Mango Ice Cream|
We finished the meal with fresh Mango Ice Cream which was dulcet and yummy.
|Our server in traditional muddu|
On the whole this no frills place, offers authentic and tasty South Indian fare at reasonable prices – a meal for 2 would cost anywhere between Rs.250 - 300 and the service super fast, we were done with our meal in half hour.
Staff: 'Quick' gun Murugan in lungis
Ambience: Traditional and no frill
QuickTip: If your fed up of the Shiv/Sukh Sagars and you are not in the mood to travel upto Matunga, Dakshinayan is a great option for South India Cuisine. The Appam and Stew is a must have!
183, Teen Batti Road, Walkeshwar
Mumbai, Maharashtra 400006
Timings: 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM, 6:00 PM to 11:00 PM
Food Type: Pure Vegetarian, South Indian, Tamilian
Payment Methods: Cash