Lunch at Michelin-selected 𝗗𝗶𝗻𝗱𝗶𝗴𝘂𝗹 𝗕𝗶𝗿𝗶𝘆𝗮𝗻𝗶 on Penang Street today. The homegrown eatery fashioned itself after the legendary Tamil Nadu dining icon, Thalappakatti Biriyani from the town of Dindigul in India. Founded back in 1957 by Nagasamy Naidu, Thalappakatti Biriyani prided itself on its Tamilian biryani which was cooked using the short-grained 𝘴𝘦𝘦𝘳𝘢𝘨𝘢 𝘴𝘢𝘮𝘣𝘢 rice, spiced with ground onions, garlic, green chilis, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves. 𝘉𝘢𝘴𝘮𝘢𝘵𝘪 rice, popular in other parts of India, especially the north, won’t be acceptable to its Tamil customers.
Over here in the heart of Penang’s Little India, 𝗗𝗶𝗻𝗱𝗶𝗴𝘂𝗹 𝗕𝗶𝗿𝗶𝘆𝗮𝗻𝗶 also opted for the 𝘴𝘦𝘦𝘳𝘢𝘨𝘢 𝘴𝘢𝘮𝘣𝘢 rice grains (also called 𝘱𝘢𝘳𝘢𝘬𝘬𝘶𝘮 𝘴𝘪𝘵𝘵𝘶), and replicated the same recipe to produce their 𝘣𝘪𝘳𝘺𝘢𝘯𝘪 offering.
We also ordered 𝙢𝙞𝙡𝙖𝙜𝙪 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙣𝙣𝙞 – a South Indian pepper soup which was the forerunner of the British 𝘮𝘶𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘨𝘢𝘵𝘢𝘸𝘯𝘺, having been adopted by the British Raj colonialists and brought back to England in the 19th-century.
For our main course, we ordered the 𝙑𝙚𝙙𝙖 𝙆𝙤𝙯𝙝𝙞 𝘽𝙞𝙧𝙮𝙖𝙣𝙞, a weekend special where the biryani is topped with a spicy, intensely-flavoured dry chicken curry. The 𝘣𝘪𝘳𝘺𝘢𝘯𝘪 was served with 𝘶𝘭𝘭𝘪 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘪𝘳𝘶 (curd with chopped purple onions), 𝘴𝘦𝘷𝘪𝘺𝘢𝘯 𝘬𝘩𝘦𝘦𝘳 (vermicelli in sweet milk dessert) and 𝘬𝘶𝘭𝘢𝘮𝘣𝘶 (a tamarind-based broth accented with a spice blend of ground coriander seeds, fenugreek, and 𝘵𝘰𝘰𝘳 𝘥𝘢𝘭/yellow lentils).
The food was ultra-spicy here, and pretty much suited the palate of the local Penang-Tamil customers. It was very busy at lunch today on Saturday.
43, Lebuh Penang (Penang Street), 10200 George Town, Penang, Malaysia
Tel: +604-261 4532
Operating hours: 10.30am to 10pm daily