Experience The Spicy, Traditional Chettinad Lunch Meals At These Iconic Places

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For us South Indians, Chettinad lunch meals are quite important. Attacking steamed rice by rounds of different spicy curries and gravies, had with either vegetables or meat side dishes is what we like to call, a complete lunch! If we just got you craving for the perfect South Indian meals, check out these iconic places, to give your taste buds quite the experience.

Amma Chettinad Restaurant

Run by the late veteran actor MGR’s personal chef, Chinnaiah, this petite restaurant in T Nagar is quite popular for its spicy nattu kozhi roast & fish fry. With soup being served to all during lunch hours to get our appetite working, we couldn’t help but try out the mutton chukka and the chicken lollipop. But if you don’t have the patience to order one course at a time, simply order the non-veg meals, which comes loaded with chicken, mutton and fish curries, along with vegetables and unlimited servings of rice!

Velu Military Hotel

I still remember my father and grandfather telling me stories about how good this place was! And it still is. Started in 1955, Velu Military quickly turned into a franchise and has outlets in Nungambakkam, Arumbakkam and Maduravoyal. After being served steaming hot rice on a banana leaf, you’ll be welcomed by a tray filled with different varieties of spicy, colourful, meat and vegetarian curries, from which you’ll have to choose from! Just be sure to order the chukka, just in case you can’t get enough of everything.


Probably one of the spiciest restaurants in town. But Chettinad meals are meant to be spicy! Located all over town in Pondy Bazaar, Egmore, Mylapore, Nungambakkam etc, Anjappar offers a neat ambiance and a very detailed menu. Simply order the non-veg meals if you’re too hungry and want to get straight to the point. They are known for the seafood, specially the crab and fish fry, but the mutton briyani and paya is still worth a try.

Thambi Vilas

Thambi Villas is all about the experience! With their interiors designed like a traditional Chettinad house, you’ll fall right into place while you enjoy your non-veg meals. They also offer goli sodas & paneer sodas in the actual goli bottles, coconut and jaggery sweets to hit you right in the feels and bring back some nostalgia. If you’re asking me to cut the chukka and get to my point, yes, the non-meals are a must try, especially the elaneer payasam or the elaneer cake to wash the meal down and 40 different types of paan!

New Pattukkottai Kamatchi Mess

Open only from 12 to 4 PM, the food here is fresh and made entirely from wood fire, making it a meat lover’s paradise. Be sure to try the prawn masala with white rice and work your way into the spicier and heavier dishes like the mutton and chicken kozhambu. Get your meals accompanied by karandi omelette¸ which as the name suggests, an omelette made in a ladle! The New Pudukottai Kamatchi Mess has outlets in Pondy Bazaar, Velachery and Karapakkam.