Other Outlets: Egmore, Purasawakkam and Sowcarpet
Address: Dr Radhakrishnan Salai, Next to New Nilgiri’s Supermarket, Mylapore, Chennai.
Cuisine: North Indian, South Indian, Fast Food, Continental, Fast Food
The origin of “Novelty Tea House” (NTH) happened a long way back with their first venture at Sowcarpet (near the flower bazaar police station). They are known for their signature Indian vegetarian cuisine. Over the period they have grown both with their outlets and food menu. NTH came really handy when I was looking for budget-friendly veg buffet. I choose the Mylapore outlet of theirs, located at the R. K. Salai. Located on the main roads of prominent road-lane it is easy to find the place. Park the vehicles down and head to the first floor of the building to dine.
There menu spreads across different cuisines; we settled down for the sit-down buffet priced at Rs.370 per person (inclusive of taxes). The buffet menu was almost a 5-course meal starting from soup and finishing off with a bowl of ice-cream. Except for the ice-cream, all the other dishes were unlimited. So let me get to the taste of the food.
Corn Cheese Balls & Gobi Manchurian: They both were at their BEST. The amount of corn and cheesiness were perfect, loved the outer coating with sprinkle of chaat masala. The crispy Gobi’s in dry Manchurian sauce were bang-on in taste. I went for repeated rounds.
Grilled Vegetables: This starter seemed to be given for name/count sake. The marinating masala used wasn’t great as well as the vegetables (Gobi, Corn and stuffed Potato) seemed over-cooked and bland.
|Starters - Sides, Cheese Balls, Manchurian & Grilled Veges|
|Pappad & Salad|
The mint chutney was good but never keen about the tomato ketchup (hope restaurants make some effort with the sides and never serve ketchups until asked for).
Chat – Pav Bhaji: Crispy buttery-toasted Pav buns were perfect with the sabji. Tasty!!
Roti & Butter Naan were good and were accompanied with three varieties of sabji’s.
Malai Kofta: The richness were over-powering that I couldn’t sense the kofta or sabji ka real flavors.
Dal Makhani: Average. Too rich to even figure out the flavors. Wasn’t a Dal Makhani I crave love to indulge in.
Aloo Sabji: Ok. Tasted good compared to other sabji’s.
|Indian Breads & Sabjis|
|Breads & Sabjis|
Veg Biriyani & Raitha: I was so full that wasn’t really in the mood to taste. But I would have preferred the biriyani over the roti & sabji’s; Biriyani tasted delicious.
Vanilla Ice Cream: A scoop! If you’re looking for lavish dessert spread in a buffet then happily skip this place.
|Biriyani & Raitha|
The taste of the food will be exceptional if they could cut down the richness in mains and concentrate more on the flavors. A piece of one other sweet for dessert would have done more justice to the price. Nevertheless, the price seems worth considering the unlimited portions. The ambience was neat and simple. The choice of sit-down buffet is brilliant considering the space constraint. We were billed Rs. 740 INR (tax inclusive).
Applause to their idea of serving one portion of the dish before going for second-round so the food isn’t wasted. But if they could serve them faster that would be of help; as we ended up waiting a while for the second-round of starters. Service is decent; but they have to speed-up their game.
Breaking Down Points
Location & Parking: Good. In one of the prominent locations that’s easy to find. They have sufficient parking space.
Ambience: Ok. It isn’t a place that focuses on ambience, it’s simple and good.
Food Variety: Good. A La Carte does have good options to choose from. Buffet varieties are good considering the price except for desserts. They also have limited buffet.
Taste: Good. No major complaints but they could definitely work on the flavors.
Quality: Average. They presented the food well. But the quality of ingredients or spices used seemed Ok.
Quantity: Positive. Unlimited sit-down buffet so eat as much as you could ;-) But only one scoop of ice-cream.
Service: Average. Definitely they could speed-up.
Pricing: Good. With few corrections in the taste and food varieties the pricing would seem more attractive. But still the pricing is pocket-friendly.
My Favorite Dishes: Corn Cheese Balls, Gobi Manchurian and Pav Bhaji
So the Verdict!
NTH! Another Veg (jain) friendly diner with ample food options. Their sit-down buffet is economical for large group of diners. They could work on improving the taste and choice of dishes in buffet. They are gracious but very slow in service. Vegetarians make a note of this place while you run out of options! Hope they spread the novelty in their name across the food and dining experience.
P.S. The write-up is based on my food palate & dining experience during my restaurant visit. Remember, no two person’s palate can be same.
Get Hold of N-Word in the Name - Novelty Tea House - Restaurant Review Reviewed by Divya Srinivasan on 16:54 Rating: