Thakkara Restaurant Review (Farwaniya br)
Kerala has a very deep cultural heritage and that reflects in the cuisine. The finest food of Kerala is normally found in traditional family homes, in villages, fast paced small town restaurants and toddy shops; where the freshness of flavors and the bounties of the tropical land and seas are celebrated with careful spicing and skillful preparation. Thakkara is more than just the average commercial food churning machine, its actually a traditional family kitchen. They serve the dishes that have been fueling their families for many years. Most of the recipes have been passed on for generations and for the most part, they have stuck with the traditional recipes rather than taming the spice to cater to the locals.
As I pen this review, they are working on opening doors to their fourth branch in Kuwait. Its been a few years since we reviewed their first restaurant in Fahaheel, and with the Farwaniya branch they have breathed life into their old menu, added a house boat theme to the restaurant and enriched the overall customer experience with more space and quality service.
Four of us had visited the place on a weekday at about 8pm for dinner. Finding the place was pretty easy thanks to their huge board. You can probably even spot them from an airplane (major exaggeration, but you get the point). We began the experience with a fresh and healthy drink, flavored with cucumber and mint. If it wasn’t for the food, all of us would’ve had another glass of the same. We began our feast with the Nadan kozhi (chicken) soup – Kd 2.250, (chicken with bone prepared in coconut milk) and for appetizers we had the Chicken Nurukku Kd 1.350, Fish Nirukku Kd 1.650 (small pieces of chicken and fish marinated with a traditional spice mixture and deep fried) and Murgh Pakoda Kd 1.500 (winglets of chicken lightly coated with flavored gram flour and deep fried). Our elaborate main course consisted of Kozhi Nirachath (stuffed chicken) Kd 2.750 (chicken fried in coconut oil, stuffed with egg and served with a thick gravy), Chicken Agadi Kizhi Kd 2.150 (exquisitely spiced chicken pieces cooked in a banana leaf), Meen Vattichathy Kd 2.750, Kadal Koottu (mix seafood) curry Kd 2.250 (crab, squid and shrimp cooked in a delicately spiced creamy curry), Malabar Meen (fish) curry Kd 1.650, Mutton Varattiyathu Kd 2.150 (lamb roast), Irachi puttu Kd 1.350 (steam rice layered with coconut and beef), Appam Kd 0.150 (a delicate latticed pancake of rice and coconut) and Moola Pathri Kd 0.150. For desserts we had the Fried Ice Cream Kd 1.150 and Falooda Kd 1.150.
One of the first things we noticed was that the portions were pretty generous and all the dishes had their own distinct flavors. There was never an ‘all for one-one for all’ gravy/masala concept. Each dish was exclusively prepared and served. Between the meat and sea food dishes, the sea food dishes stood out in terms of exquisite flavor and taste. To list our favorite dishes we unanimously agreed on the Kadal Koottu curry, Malabar Meen curry and Chicken Angadi Kizi. The Chicken Angadi Kizhi had amazingly soft and juicy chicken pieces that were almost in a paste of the perfect blend of spices. Where these dishes lacked in spice they made up in flavor. These three are highly recommended. Another note worthy dish was the Murgh Pakoda. Unlike many places that serve a ‘starved’ chicken coated with a bland and thick batter, here the flavored batter just lightly covered a fleshy and juicy chicken. The Meen Vattichathy was a red snapper palpably fresh and carefully cooked. The Moola Pathri (which was more like a square chapathi) was delicious enough to be eaten by itself. It retained its soft and pliable texture even after it got a bit cold. The desserts were pretty average.
While the Indian cuisine uses a myriad of spices each dish is intricately spiced and laced with the flavors of the masala that ought to enhance the flavor of the primary ingredient be it meat or fish. Every restaurant has a price to quality ratio which I believe is vital when reviewing. While it would be foolish to benchmark a modest dinner to a Michelin star or a fine dine restaurant, our favorite three dishes would certainly offer some competition. Thakkara offers an interesting array of flavors that are unique to Malabari cuisine, generous in portions and affordable in price.
Ratings – Ambiance – 8/10, Service -8/10, Menu – 8/10, Food – 8/10, Consistency – 8/10, Value for Money – 8/10
Overall – Serving traditional Kerala cuisine, offering an exquisite menu, housing a theme restaurant, serving good food at an affordable price makes Thakkara an ‘Oasis’ in this dessert!
Ph – 24734994
Time – 11:30 am – 11:30pm