Kodaikanal finally gets its very own ‘destination’ restaurant and it’s slammin’
It’s taken forever but it’s been well worth the wait. It’s odd that an area that boasts of high quality, fresh local produce hasn’t spawned a top notch restaurant. Ten Degrees doesn’t just take its name from Kodi’s average year-round temperature but also from its 10°N latitude.
The interiors are cheerful and cozy – perfect for a leisurely meal when you’re on chill (holiday) mode. The still life images of Kodaikanal look even more dramatic when the lights take over. Yes, it’s a complete contrast to those big city frenetic dining experiences where you always have one eye on your watch. Stuff unfolds in slow-mo in Kodi; the best way to enjoy a meal here.
Chef Anand who masterminded some of Chennai’s finest culinary experiences (including Cornucopia, one of my personal favourites) is firmly in charge. Cornucopia regulars will remember some of his signatures like a velvety mushroom soup and the elegant tres leches cake. While some of the menu stays in that comfort zone, a significant chunk of the menu explores new ground. Kodi’s fresh local produce elevates a fruit and cheese salad with seriously crunchy lettuce while fresh crab from not so nearby Rameshwaram adds great flavour to the Crab curry.
The cuisine doesn’t follow a set pattern except for Chef Anand’s now customary brilliance that also occasionally borders on eccentric genius. The wasabi prawns where a drizzle of honey adds a magical contrasting element to the wasabi is a case in point and so is the orange infused chocolate mousse in an edible chocolate shell. The menu also has room for flaky Malabar parottas (made a la minute) with a host of scrumptious curries – the Pork Vindaloo is a ‘must try’
Many of us need Kodaikanal (just like how we need Goa) to truly unwind and slow things down. This new eatery adds a cool new dimension to your Kodi holiday experience by a factor of more than Ten Degrees.
Ten Degrees is at PT Road (just off the 7 road Junction) at Kodaikanal. Phone: 96593-06633. Open through the day (11 am to 9 pm). Meal for 2: Rs 1000/-
(All images in this feature snapped on the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge)