Saturday, October 17, 2015

Dravida’s & Peter Donuts

Classic Rock Coffee Co. in PuneDravida’s Bistro is a welcome addition to Pune’s food scene.  Where most restaurants that serve Indian food tend to focus on oily dishes that can leave you feeling heavy and lethargic, Dravida’s has filled its menu with home-style South Indian food with a contemporary twist. The focus is on the use of fresh vegetables and healthy grains. What surprised me the most was the price-point.  For the food on offer and the casual but upscale ambiance I am sure many would be willing to pay higher.

Dravida’s serves only vegetarian food but that has never been a problem with me. Does that surprise you knowing how much I enjoy my meat? Actually, South Indian foods is special because it is comfort food and brings back memories of my childhood days in Mysore; this is the one kind of cuisine for which I can gladly go vegetarian.

Dravida’s has a few other unique things in its menu.  They allow you to customise almost any dish to your taste.  For example, a dosa can be specified by size (small, medium, large), type (regular, rava, etc.) and filling (traditional, mixed veg, paneer, etc.).

The one thing that has been my favourite for lunch is their Create Your Own Basket option, which allow you to create a custom thali by choosing your own variety of rice, breads, and options from a menu of vegetable starter and gravy preparations - all available in small or large sizes.  It is a rather unique concept, but one that works very well.  Another thing I love is their Degree Coffee sourced from Kerala.

The restaurant is located in City Point on Boat Club Road.  Try them also for their organic juices and the elaborate satvik thali on weekends. If there is one thing they should continue to focus on, it is faster and more efficient service. They are a little short of waitstaff which can be a problem if you are in a hurry.

Cafe Peter Donuts is another place to hangout over coffee, pastries or even something more substantive.  Large and airy, this place recently opened opposite Symbiosis in Viman Nagar.  There is no way you can miss the bright red cafe with its large glass windows when you are driving by.

We tried a few of their dishes, which were served fast and efficiently.  The Chicken Stroganoff and Thai Green Curry were both pretty good especially if you were looking for a fast meal. Their donuts were good too - not surprising, since Koreans tend to be serious about their baking.

I was curious about so many Korean run places opening up in Pune lately (London Muffin, another favourite place, is also run by Koreans).  Turns out the couple who own this one visited India once, loved the country and on a whim decided to move here and set up their own restaurant.  The day we went to Peter Donuts, the restaurant had just opened and a lot of people from the local Korean community were in attendance. I hope we will continue to see more of this phenomenon.  India was once a magnet for global travellers; I hope we can make this country attractive from global immigrants once again!


The Untourists said...

Awesome. Just discovered your blog. Is Peter Donut owned by Koreans as well? I had been to the outlet near Bavdhan. So nice to hear about Dravida too. Though We live in Mumbai, Pune has a special place and we keep visiting every now and then.nwill check these places out.

Shantanu said...

Sorry...haven’t been updating the blog lately. Thanks for visiting. Yes, Peter Donuts is owned by a Korean family too.