It is customary, in fact, common-sensical, to categorize restaurants based on
- Cuisine (From Ethiopian to Thalapaakattu Biriyani),
- Price levels (“Swiss Bank account details required” vs “mere account mein daal dena”)
- Geography (Manhattan to Masilaamani Street (near Brilliant Tutorials).
Therefore, it is my solemn duty to categorize eating joints around the world by not using aforementioned parameters.
Let us start with The Snooty.
Waiters usually wear Hugo Boss suits and speak in accents that could be used to trim foliage. Food arrives in quantities inversely proportional to the cost. The wine comes from grapes that Mr Fox’ great-great grandfather declared to be sour. People speak in volumes so low that bats would need hearing aids to listen to them.
Eggsambles: Anything with a French name. Les Sappadeaux, La Foullthaalee
The Amreekan Desi
Pnjaaabi. All-you-can-eat. Mango Lassi. Slaaad. Same menu across the length and breadth of the United States. $6.99 Kingfisher beer. Instrumental (usually piano and saxophone) Bollywood background mujik. Posters of Taj Mahal.
Eggsambles: India Kitchen, India Palace, India Haveli, Taste of India, India Oven, Taj Mahal
The Makku Vaatthu
Uniform dresses. Caps. Zombie like forced smiles. Over enthusiastic “What would you like to eat today”. If you spend over $10, you are probably overeating. Or you came with friends. 5 of them. With the exception of Freedom Fries, everything on the menu is served between 2 pieces of bun. Animal Fat.
Eggsambles: Wendys, Taco Mani, Kaattuputthur Fried Cozhi, Arbys, Burger Raja
The Sukravaar Sandhosam
Hi. My name is (insert name). I’ll be your waiter/waitress today. What can I get you to drink? Your food will be right out. Large cocktails. Pacific Blue Mountain Margaritas. Lots of posters, theme based paraphernalia. Small box with glowing red buttons to indicate that they are ready to seat you.
Eggsambles: Yabbaaa! Friday Vandicchu, Chilis, Applebees
The Rajjaakku bai Massacred Barotta Stall
Street corner. Movable(with wheels). Extra Large Cauldron with Biriyani. Large tawa with devious torture weapons for making Kotthu Parotta. Two healthy looking street dogs with tails wagging all the time. Cutlery = 5 fingers of human hand.
The Wonton Van
Ramshackle van. Nepali or Naga chef. Questionable hygeine and spellings. Nudals, Amlate, Choupusy, Sweat and Sour chikan. Momos.
The Real Balle Balle
Dining table = Bed made out of jute rope strung across crudely cut pieces of wood. Several large trucks promising to blacken the faces of those who look with an evil eye. Butter Chicken. Sarson Da Saag. Side dish = 30 Rs. Tandoori Rotis = 0 Rs.
Eggsambles: Kake da dhaaba, Jabba di Hutti (Finest Pnjaabi cuisine on the planet Tatooine)
The Maxican Rashtront in Delhi (and Gurgaon)
Waiters dressed like Hombres de Mexico. Wearing spurs. Guns. Cowboy hats. Spanish music playing in the background. What do they serve? Paneer Butter Masala.
Eggsambles: Rodeo (Connaught Place), El Rancho
Banana leaves. Decibel level of stainless steel vessels clashing against each other = 120. Waiter attire = banian, dhoti, striped underwear (visible below dhoti). Kumbakonamwaiterese for “What would you like to eat?” = “Mmm?”. As you tell him what dish you want, he will relay that information immediately to the kitchen using a very loud voice. Coffee served upside down. Bill arrives with the food immediately.
Eggsambles: Srinivasa Cafe (Kapey in Tamil), Mayavaram Arya Nivas
Meals Ready. Mountains of rice. Served not with a ladle, but a large plate. Limited side dishes.
Eggambles: All restaurants in places other than Chennai in TN, between the times 12 pm to 3 pm.
The Desi Fyvishtaar
Finely boiled rice from the Cauvery Delta subtly mixed with perfectly curdled milk featuring lactobacteria from Switzerland, and garnished with a delectably spicy combination of spices served with marinated citrus fried and preserved in sesame oil. Rs 425 + taxes.
Eggsambles: Dakshin (Park Sheraton), Southern Spice (Taj Coromandel)
Ofcourse, this list isn’t complete. Now readers, get to work.