Kove for the love of Coimbatore/ Kovai❤️

The Manchester of South India is weaving a new Coimbatore. My first visit to this little city was in 1998 when I married a young man from here. Our reception was held at the most iconic Annapoorna, I was told this was one place where many of the coimbatorians get hitched!

Mandatory

Our visits to this city continued over years and stories about how my husband and his friends use to hang around Annapoorna was something I got used to hearing often and at times the stories kept on repeating as friends who are all around the world kept coming to Coimbatore for their vacation. By now it had become a household name for me who came from Mumbai. The morning coffee and breakfast was a ritual everytime we came to Coimbatore from Chennai. We hosted and attended many weddings over the years!

Few years back when we saw the place closed for renovation, we were a little disheartened but at the same time excited and waiting for it to open. Little did we know that the wait was totally worth it. My heart swelled with Pride and happiness to what I witnessed today!

Coimbatore you have arrived should I say more! The structure, the food, the ambience, the service and the warmth was class apart!

Would I have ever thought of me seated in a vegetarian restaurant and enjoying the most amazing cocktail along with my family few years ago in Coimbatore???and today I was right here in this place enjoying Nannari Negroni & Jalapeno Mojito, really what – a – what -a !!!

Nannari Negroni
Jalapeno mojito

And wait, vegetarian did I say? Let me correct myself progressive vegetarian restaurant, because most of the dishes that we experienced today are specially curated for kove and kove alone by Gourmet Sage Hospitality Solutions who also are the principal consultant for this project.

We started our meal with Tortellini soup and Singhada makkai shorba. From Italy to North India the soups were spot on with the right flavour, taste and presentation.

Singhada makkai shorba
Tortellini soup

The brocolli Thai cold salad sure was a pleasant twist to the salad experience. The Asian fusion to the south indian curry leaves the cream cheese Rangoon to the karuvepillai baby corn the journey kept the flavours intact.

Karuvepillai baby corn
Cream cheese Rangoon
Brocolli Thai salad

The yam urandai kuzhambu ( yam balls) in South Indian gravy served with ghee rice was as good as the Nasi Goreng that was our main course.

Nasi Goreng
Yam urandai
Yam urandai kuzhambu

The mocktail shoots definitely intersting not only for the eyes but the palate too!

Mocktail shoots

The finale for this meal sure had to be exceptional. The nanari Sorbet was a refreshing palate cleaners and the best friend to someone who is vegan! The lucky Irishman was my favourite since I love Bailey’s!

Nannari sorbet
The Irishman

Kove at ikon, Annapoorna is definitely a place to visit for the sheer experience of something very very special, it is an experience not to be missed along with family and friends! A place to make memories thinking of the old, cherishing and embracing the new! And raising a toast with cheers to new beginning!

Weekend getaway to this city that is so close and so beautiful Bangalore! Sheraton Brigade you made it special!

It has been almost 2yrs since we crossed our state border. For avid travellers like us, it has not been easy not to travel, but at the same time we were grateful this time around crossing our state border only 350kms away. The pandemic has given us many lessons one that tops the list is gratitude!

So when we had a family function to attend we grabbed this opportunity to just drive and enjoy this beautiful city Bangalore! When we started looking up hotels we wanted something that was close to our family yet something that we could enjoy too.

Sheraton Brigade was the ideal choice for us because that meant we could commute easily to our family house. And we were so glad we choose Sheraton Brigade, Marriott Bonvoy! Though we reached a little early, our check in was done with grace and smile. Debolina took very good care of our check in.

The night view ❤️

Our room had the most beautiful view from the 11th floor, the beautiful skyline and orian mall. The rooms were comfortable, clean and spacious.

View from our room

We dined at two of their restaurants. Our constant was the feast for breakfast everyday and the sunday brunch. Here is a shout out that I would want to give Rahul Sharma for gracefully handling all my request. I am totally not a buffet person, I like very limited food but has to be fresh on my table with all the goodness. Since the 1st day of breakfast to the 3rd day I was served simple nutritious food. Some of my favourites were the French Toast, pancakes, egg Benedict, crispy dosa, fresh fruit bowls and the clear Soup. Conversation along with food is something I love too, so we had loads of knowledge exchange and food conversations, that’s what I Loved the most !

The sunday brunch sure was a big affair to everything on the counter that one could think off including Live music. At the same time all covid protocols were adhered to, no guest was allowed to leave their table without masking up. Strict but polite was the Mantra! The food was elaborate with prawn masala, spaghetti bolognese, chicken butter masala with chura paratha, tomato basil Soup, salad, prawn corriader, broccoli kasundi grill and avacado bruschetta. Loved the Vibes and energy of the place on a Sunday afternoon.

Evenings were pampered with snacks the little cute things that just make you happy!

The sunday dinner at the persian terrace was another beautiful story I could just keep penning. Have had the opportunity to have Mediterranean food in my places. But this one is Bangalore out beats of all them. This one was a totally unplanned dinner. Just when we were planning to skip dinner this place caught our attention. We wanted something light and nice.
The cocktail  Jawaafa -tini the gin in gauva  was a great start to our quiet sunday dinner.
The amuse bouche was a beautiful platter with falafel, hummus, baba ghanouse, pita and samboosak  the perfect Platte cleanser to dig into our mixed meat Platter Kebab e mukthalif.
This platter had minced meat, chicken , newzealand chops, fish and prawn all the Mediterranean way, served with either flavored rice or pita. Each meat had its own distinct flavour and loaded with flavour.
We ended our dinner with the perfectly plated  baklava!
Called it an evening with the beautiful view and weather.
Must must visit place if in Bangalore!

Along with our beautiful stay and food at Sheraton Brigade I had the most relaxed massage at shine the spa at Sheraton Brigade.
In covid times they have taken utmost care to ensure that their place is kept clean and sanitized all the time. My masseurs Linda was masked and vaccinated. Her hands were extremely professional in the massage and relaxed my whole body with ease and comfort.

3 nights and 4days of stay at Sheraton Brigade was very special. I would like to thank the entire team for taking service to the next level. Special mention to Debolina, Rahul Sharma, Rukhsana, executive chef Anshuman Bali, Gaurav, Deeksha and priya for making our stay so special. Shibil Malik, must say you have an excellent team!

How to successfully convert Job offers to Joiners in India!

The biggest nightmare and challenge that every recruiter is facing today in India is the conversion from offer given to joining. And that’s the first question I ask every candidate that I call for a recruitment position.

Who is worried about how many offers you rolled out, tell me how many joined and what is your success and strategy for that conversion.

As greedy as people could get it’s a fact that if you are the first to offer a person who has 3 months of notice period you are his last prefered employer. The moment he/ she gets an offer, there is when the real job hunt starts. By the time the candidate joins that last company that he negotiated the salary he/she would have managed a minimum 100 to 200 percent hike. So 3 months is used to get more and more and believe me there is no end to it. I have had candidates whose current salary was 9 lacs got their first offer for 12lacs, next one for 15lacs, 18lacs, 20lacs and finally joined the company that offered him 22lacs.

Now who is to be blamed for this ofcourse the employers who keep giving these offers just because they are desperate to fill that position.

Can we bring an end to this drama? Yes we can. How? Like I always say once a person has resigned his contribution and loyalty for that employer starts going down. Those are also people who can create more harm than adding any value to your organization. Let them go, 3 months is a ridiculously long time to keep someone in the system well only if you want to show the head for the headcount. Like most of the countries 2 week’s is a good time for knowledge transfer and farewells!

To all my senior management and decision makers of an organization, if you are looking at hiring people and looking at only immediate joiners it’s time to let your people go immediately too. It’s a circle and someone has to break it. 2 week’s believe me is a good time to let go and induct a new employees!

Yogita Uchil Human factor corporation

Homemade Konkan food in Chennai ❤️

My hands are trembling with joy when I am writing this Blog. This is the food I grew up eating and have been wanting to have it in Chennai. Specially now during lockdown since I couldn’t travel to Mumbai or Goa due to the pandemic.

Deepika and me have been having discussion about konkan food and we started the discussion last year when lockdown was announced. Have been following up with him every other week and he kept telling me soon. Finally the dream is a reality.

Konkan food ( Goan and Konkan) has its own unique flavour of spices, coconut and kokam. The Flavours are very comforting and not too rich. The sol kadhi has its own soul and it’s the best! We ordered the fish thali and the chicken thali.

The fish thali had bangda/ mackerel rava fry, prawn curry with kokam, kismur ( typical goan salad made using dry fish), kosambir ( veg salad), steamed rice and sol kadhi ( spicy kokam juice in coconut milk) it is a digestive. Like south indians have curd rice end of the meal people from the konkan region have a small portion of steamed rice with sol kadhi.

The chicken thali has malvani chicken curry with either rice bakri ( rice chapati/ roti) or vadi ( rice puri) kosambir ( veg salad) and sol kadhi. Packed with Flavours right from the Konkan region.

A must must try meal it has its own charm and this one will definitely not disappoint you. If you have had Konkan food before go for this, if you haven’t tried Konkan food before you have to experience this Flavours. Very limited uncomplicated menu. Btw they buy their produce fresh everyday. Available for delivery in Chennai , call +91 9930503526 order!

Flavours of Odia now in Chennai!

The city of Chennai has been exploding with flavours from all around India and the world. Who are giving us these delectable food? They are the kind hearted and loving home chefs who share food from their home kitchens!

Home chef Abhipsa has been in Chennai for awhile now and has been conducting quiet a few live cookery shows on instagram and Facebook. We have been encouraging her to start sharing the Flavours of Odia in Chennai for quite a long time now. The trigger for starting her small food delivery is the food exchange we had 2 week’s ago through our community group Eat Pray and Love that gave her the confidence that she could start taking baby steps towards her food journey!

we were lucky to be part of the first week of food going out of Abhi’s cafe. We had two style of meals one with
Ghee rice
Luchi
Dhaba style dal tadka
Alu potala bhaja ( pointed gourd fry)
Pithau bhaja ( rice coated veggies tawa fry)
Bilati baigana khata ( sweet tomato chutney)
Odia style malpua

Another with Ghee rice
Luchi
Dhaba style dal tadka
Chuin besara bhaja ( drumstick fry with mustard paste)
Saga bhaja ( green stir-fry)
Dahi bhendi ( ladies finger in yoghurt)
Odia style malpua

Paneer kobi tarkari ( paneer n cauliflower curry)


Chhanka tarkari ( odia style mix veg curry)

Machha Besara( fish in mustard gravy)


Kukuda jhola ( chicken gravy with potato odia style)

For people who want to know. Odia food like Bengali food is cooked using Mustard oil
Odia Cuisine is the cuisine of the state of Odisha. It has developed over time with local culture and agriculture and hence has its distinct items and practices. Odisha borders both north Indian states and south Indian states and consequently is similar to the cuisines of South and North India ( wiki)

For us it was totally delicious home cooked comfort food that came with the best ingredients and flavours from Abhipsa’s home kitchen. The Flavours were definitely extra special because it was loaded with love and affection. If you are in Chennai and looking to taste the Flavours of Chennai. Please reach out to Abhipsa on +91 99401 28965

The Joy of Bengali Home cooked food in Chennai!

The sunday Bengali lunch

The big bong lunch ❤️
Sundays are special but this one was super special.
It was my birthday weekend and we were invited to dine with  Joy and family.

Joyadrita (Joy) is a home chef who cooks up authentic Bengali food with recipes from her mom and grandma. Chennai is indeed lucky to have someone like her in the city. Joy has done couple of pop ups and food festivals in Chennai as well as mumbai.

Joy and me

How can we start a Lunch without the spirit? Joy’s husband Ragav makes excellent mojito I was told and mojito it was, must say the best that I have had so far!

Mojito by Ragav

The lunch was an elaborate affair. Started with the Bengali chicken cutlet, my eyes opened wider as I saw the cutlet puff up like a Puri when fried.

Bhetki Jhaal diye/Sea bass in mustard gravy, being a fish lover was my favourite. The fish was super fresh and the preparation was subtle yet so yummy!

Bhetki Jhaal diye/Sea bass in mustard gravy

Chingri Bati Chorchori/Freshwater shrimps in a spicy mishmash. The prawns were soft and sweet and the masala was perfect!

Chingri Bati Chorchori/Freshwater shrimps in a spicy mishmash

Robibarer Laal Manghsher Jhol/Sunday Mutton Curry. With my boys who love mutton this sure was a perfect sunday treat. Bongs make the best mutton I say, the flavour of the musturd oil compliments the flavour of the meat.

Off course we had to have some vegetables too. Phoolkopir Rosha/Cauliflower florets in a silken, flavorful gravy.

Phoolkopir Rosha/Cauliflower florets in a silken, flavorful gravy

Sobji diye ghee bhaat/Bengali Style ghee rice with seasonal vegetables. The flavour of the ghee was intense and perfect combo for the mutton curry!

Sobji diye ghee bhaat/Bengali Style ghee rice

The sweet chutney was more like a dessert, seasoned with the onion seeds the flavour was tangy yet sweet. Traditional this chutney is relished with papad and we had it the traditional way. This reminded me of how few people in the south have a combo of payasam and papadam. After all we Indians have so much similarity in our food habits irrespective of which part of India we belong too!

Sweet Tomato chutney

Lucky to have had this meal during the season of nolen Gur. Nolen Gur is date jaggery that is available in Bengal only during winter and is the best jaggery with loads of health benefits. We got to gorge on the nolen Gur rosgulla!

Nolen Gur rosgulla

And the story does not end there, we Love people who love our food and we want to give them more food. That’s exactly what happened to us. We had some take aways too. Must confess the most environment friendly packing, every small detail was taken into consideration when Joy thought of starting her home cooked food service. Her husband has been a pillar of support with fabulous packaging ideas.

Food packed in earthenware coverd with banana leaf!

I really think that we are so blessed to have home chefs like Joy who spread happiness and joy through food!

The families

A point to note, most of the Home chef’s are passionate about what they do, they don’t do it only for the monetary benefits. The ingredients that most of them use are from their home kitchen and are always hand picked with care and yes hence they do work a bit expensive. But the Joy that you get from the food that comes out of their kitchen is soul satisfying. Show them love and affection ❤️

The meal on our platter!

For authentic Bengali Home cooked food in Chennai reach out to Joy on +91 84520 98701 Instagram handle https://instagram.com/foodofjoyflavoursofbengal?igshid=16z0nkx5yj5xx

Traditional South Indian non vegetarian food in Coimbatore at Hotel Kannappa.

Hotel kannappa is a one of those restaurants that believes in traditional style of cooking that is very rarely found in today’s fast food world. Their spices and masala’s are all made inhouse in Trichy where the brand was born.
The recipes are brought down from the grand mother’s and mothers and most of the dishes are slow cooked on woodfire. There is definitely no short cuts to a good meal.
This fish, chicken and Mutton are sourced fresh everyday. The highlight of the meal is the finale the elaneer/ tender coconut payasam.
Coimbatore has two outlets ( mind you all their outlets are owner run) one near the airport and another at ganapathy.

We started our lunch with the traditional soup Chettinadu Nattukoli Rasam
Chettinadu Aatu Eraichi Saru.

Chettinadu Nattukoli Rasam
Chettinadu Aatu Eraichi Saru

Spl Kannappa chicken
Chettinadu Pepper Chicken
Mutton Sukka
Mutton Nalli Sukka
Mutton Kola urundai
Yeral Milagu piratal
Vanjaram Tawa Fish
Butterfly prawns
South Indian Fish Fingers
The starters were a riot of flavours with everything fresh from the mutton to thr chicken to the fish and prawn. Each dish had unique flavours and spices.

Starters spread on a banana leaf
Fish fry and kola urandai
Fish fingers and Mutton nalli sukka
The starters platter

The best main course and the most favourite dish in South India. Mutton biriyani!

Mutton biryani ❤️

The finale was ultimate with the elaneer payasam!

Elaneer payasam!

Hotel kannappa is based at ganapathy in Coimbatore. All their hotels are owner run. They are a 20 years old brand that started in Trichy in the year 2000. With 5 restaurants in Trichy one in tanjavur and 2 in Coimbatore they are bringing back traditional food to people in South India.

The girl gang with the kannappa team

Every life has a story. This is ours at The story, Yercaud!

On a beautiful Friday afternoon we entered the story to write our story for the next two days!

View watching

Our story started from Chennai on a early Friday morning with a bunch of like minded fun people. We did a quick pit Stop at murugan idly. A little about murugan idly, the food was good, rest rooms are worse. A humble suggestion for murugan idly, many of them stop for your food more to use the wash room, hence please keep it clean. After that stop we straight headed to Yercaud. The weather was stunning, the drive was a breeze.

The story in front of our eyes had a mesmerizing effect on us, the vibes and aura were inviting. This resort is relatively new in Yercaud. Must say it was love at first sight for us, the view from the resort is stunning too!

The reception
The room

A little about Yercaud, Yercaud is a hill station town in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It lies in the Shevaroy Hills, known for their orange groves, and coffee, fruit and spice plantations. Yercaud Lake has a boathouse, and is surrounded by gardens and woods. On the lake’s eastern shore, Anna Park has local plants and a Japanese garden with bonsai. It is a 365 kms from Chennai 195kms from Coimbatore 205 kms from Bangalore and 30kms from salem.

Misty morning
Yercaud hills
Servarayan temple

We did visit a few places in and around Yercaud, but tried to spend as much time as possible at The story. They have a bonfire at night with music, the food is very good and made fresh to order, they do inform you to order food in advance. The complimentary breakfast is quite a big spread with south Indian breakfast delicacies. The staff are extremely polite and are ay your service all time with a smile in their face. Special thanks to Ravi, Saravana, John, Bobby and Namita for the excellent hospitality.

Breakfast
Filter coffee

To know more about The story https://www.google.com/travel/hotels/s/H9mDZ address is Berry Garden Phase – III, Pagoda Point Road, Yercaud Hills, Salem, Yercaud, Tamil Nadu 636601

The Story

Traditional Central Tamilnadu food cooked on firewood at Manjal, Chennai.

Manjal ( turmeric) is such an important part of an indian meal and so is this restaurant that serves the best of traditional food cooked on firewood. The food here is from Central Tamil Nadu.

Manjal

We all know that food cooked on firewood has a flavour and taste that cannot be matched by conventional cooking. The theme of this place is to serve traditional food the traditional way. The meal comes in plates laced by Banana leaf.

Firewood cooking

The vegeterian meal is as interesting as the non vegetarian meal keeping tastes and flavours intact. Both meals are unlimited Manjal has a whole variety of side dishes like the crab curry, brain fry, mutton chops, chicken fry, fish fry, prawn fry vanjaram fry that is served along with the meals. The biryani both mutton and chicken are available on the menu too. The vegeterian meal is priced at 450 plus tax and non vegetarian meal at 575 Plus tax. Remember it’s unlimited.

Vegeterian and non Vegetarian meal
Crab curry
Country chicken shredded ( nattu kozhi) in traditional Tamil Nadu masala
Prawn tokku
Liver masala
Vegetable meals
Mutton biryani

What makes this place special is traditional food cooked on firewood with nostalgic feeling of eating at some small town, fresh ingredients, no fuss food, eat to your hearts content.

Rustic interiors
Breakfast menu
Lunch menu

Manjal opens their door for guests on Christmas with a hearty breakfast and lunch.

Manjal is located at
Old no 17, ,New no 4, kasturi estate, 1st street Poes garden, Chennai-18

Quaint place in Chennai to spend time with family and friends❤️


The most amazing evening  at a beautiful location, outdoor seating, chic interiors and awesome food. You can find it all at “Meraki”  at Neelangarai.

We started our early dinner with two unique soups. The Cream of chicken was bursting with flavour when the carrot and cumin was subtle and yet touched our soul.

Appetizers were a fusion of South, north and continental.
Munthiri Parappu  / dal Vada with cashew nuts did take the Vada to a different level all together, the salsa that went along was a total treat.

The vegeterian Platter was a mix of beetroot kebab, this sure was my favourite, it just melted in my mouth, the brocolli was yummy and the truffle mushroom bharwan was excellent.

The non vegetarian Platter was a combination of fresh fish in green masala, prawn with coconut was my favourite flavour since I personally love coconut and the chicken kebab was moist and subtle on flavour.

Gongura with black and white paratha was a treat to our eyes and palate

Grilled fish chimichuri was served on a bed of fresh vegetable salad. Huge chunks of mahi mahi was fresh and loaded with flavour.

By now we were full and made a little place for some rice and mutton gravy. The ghee jeera rice bursted with the ghee flavour and the tender mutton gravy complemented it very well.

Things to know – like every other industry they too are slowly crawling back to the new normal, the desserts menu is not totally available. Parking here is on the streets, though it is not a busy road, hence not very difficult. Good news they have open dining space on the ground floor as well on the terrace. One reason we opted to try this place.

Covid safety and precautions- please wear your mask all the time except when you are eating or taking pictures. Wash/ sanitise your hands well. Social distancing has to be maintained. If you find it difficult to follow the safety measures, you could order food from them or do a take away.

Here is how you reach there https://g.co/kgs/Zr6swW