Saravanaa Bhavan – The Best Indian Vegetarian Restaurant

By Sumiitra Yiohan Sooriaarratchi

The tagline says it all – A synergy of taste and quality across the globe… every hour… every day…

The best Indian restaurant in town by far. What I admire the most about Saravanaa Bhavan is that they don’t compromise on quality and always give you the best. Whether its friendly service, quality ingredients, delicious (authentic) recipes, an extensive menu, cleanliness, efficient operations, professional (happy) waiters and ambience – Saravanaa Bhavan wins in all departments. While its true that Saravanaa Bhavan could be considered an expensive place to eat; I came to realize that the price justifies the effort and quality that is put in to the overall service and it is well worth it. The food is fantastic and I highly recommend this restaurant.

The branch that I visit almost every week is located at No.26, Leboh Ampang, 50100, Kuala Lumpur (on the same road as the HSBC Malaysia Head Office Building) and is open daily from 7.30 am to 11.00 pm. Other branches in Kuala Lumpur are at Bangsar, Brickfields, Jalan Ampang, Masjid India and KLCC.

Check out The New York Times (2014) article on Saravanaa Bhavan: Masala Dosa to Die For

On my most recent visit waiter Raja served us. He is friendly and always on hand to answer questions about the menu or to relate interesting facts about the dishes. He introduced us to “Gun Powder” also known as “Idli Pudi”  which is a thick, spicy dip (orange-brown in color) made from the roasted powder of three types of dhal (lentils). Raja also mentioned that when Idli Pudi is eaten in the morning (with Idli of course) it gives you a “kick” and can keep you going for the whole day. Idli Pudi is eaten by very strict vegans in India like the Hare- Krishna’s  who in addition to being vegans don’t eat things that grows underground like garlic, onions, carrots, potatoes or any tubers. Perhaps it has something to do with the spiritual high that yogi’s or strict vegans experience a bit like not being “grounded” so-to-speak 🙂

Try it when you go there next… apologies for not taking a photo of the Idli Pudi / Gun Powder. 

Vegetarian Biriyani (Bottom Left), Kashmiri Pulao (Bottom Right), Papadam (Center), Masala Tosa and Ulundu Vade (Top Left to Right)

Yummy Vegetarian Biriyani !!!
Masala Thosa
Masala Dosa


Our waiter S. Raja…………………………….. wow Raja …that’s some fancy skill with the tea you’ve got there !!!

Tea with milk and sugar… a great way to end this vege feast!

Ah the menu… where do we start? So many things to try… such little time… sigh!

Allow me to quote from their website ( :

The Indian Cuisine is as diverse as its culture, languages, regions and its climate. Every major region of India brings its own unique dishes and subtle variations to popular dishes. Aromatic Spices are the essence of Indian cuisine. This is the unique formula, we, at Hotel Saravana Bhavan, chain of Indian vegetarian restaurants follow, to build our businesses across the globe.

Each new restaurant added to our network carries the legacy of good taste and quality. The trust that the customers have placed in us has been a motivating factor in exploring new destinations. Today, our group has its presence across 30 outlets in South India, 3 in the North and 18 countries with 68 outlets across the globe. We have come a long way creating a niche among the Hotelier & Caterer segment.

We ensure our customers are our strength and make them feel at home when they are with us. An outlet to be great with friends or all by yourself. You can eat in, take it to go, or have it catered right to you. The feeling is friendly and the food is fabulous. Whenever you need it, wherever you need it, it is your own unique world to eat out.

Our services include Fast Food, Take Away, Home Delivery, Outdoor Catering, Party Orders and more.”

Photos by Sharmini Jayawardena

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