Eat like a world traveller without breaking the bank at rapidly evolving Kammanahalli
Word on the street is that Kammanahalli has acquired a Manhattan-esque vibe, and is now referred to as Kammanahattan. Hardly surprising since a vibrant group of expatriates and students from the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and East Asia have made it a colourful multi-cultural food hub where you are spoiled for choice, from breakfast right through to dinner. We take a closer look
Tucked just off the main road in a narrow side street, Arirang Kitchen is a revelation from the minute you step through the door. Fully decked out with furniture that owner Sun Jun Lee has imported from Korea, everything from the Oriental lampshades to the low wooden tables and comfortable floor stools is authentic. Sun Jun Lee started the restaurant to cater to Korean expats in the city, but now their clientele is only 50 per cent Korean, with intrigued locals queuing up to sample the food.
Order any of the barbeque meats, and your meal will appear before you on a grill set into the middle of the table. With a minimum order for two people, you can sample the succulent beef belly, or try the pork, which is marinated in a sweet soy sauce. Bibimpap, a signature Korean meal served in a hot stone pot, combines rice with sautéed vegetables, soy sauce and a chili pepper paste. Arirang variations include Bibimpap with octopus, squid or fried egg. For those wanting a less adventurous meal, noodles are in plentiful supply, and the glass noodles — made from sweet potato — are a delicious treat. Rs. 1,200 for two. Details: 41732581
Black, gold and green
Established by Dr Manjunath, an ophthalmologist who has lived in Jamaica for the past 25 years, Hotel Jamayca brings the flavour of the Caribbean to Bangalore. The extensive lunchtime buffet running on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays is the perfect chance to sample the food. The star of the show is the Jamaican chicken, which is dry-rubbed with jerk seasoning. A mixture of all-spice, Caribbean red pepper, cinnamon, garlic and salt, it adds a fiery, yet faintly sweet taste to the meat. We ate it with a spinach and egg fried rice, dunking it into the vinegar and lemon-based dip, which created a deliciously sour contrast.
For a la carte dining, try the quintessential Jamaican rice and peas, which is actually a mixture of kidney beans and long-grain rice, flavoured with coconut milk, garlic and thyme. With reggae music in the background, the Jamaican flag adorning the ceiling, and drinks including ginger beer to sip on, it’s impossible not to get into the swing of things. Rs. 1,000 for two. Details: 65326666
The area has attracted its fair share of branded cafe chains, including Au Bon Pain and French Loaf, as well as a branch of the popular Cafe Thulp, which specialises in straight-up American food. Think buffalo wings, hot dogs, beef burgers and steaks. Our vote for a laid-back lunch goes to L’Cafe, Bangalore’s first Singaporean restaurant.
Don’t miss the laksa, a coconut-based yet spicy noodle soup, or the steamed baos, that come filled with either red bean paste or Chinese mushrooms. With advance notice, they can also rustle up Singapore’s famous chicken rice, which contains a whole chicken, and is served with a chilly dipping sauce and a healthy cabbage soup. Rs. 600 for two. Details: 8884938241
— Maegan Dobson Sippy