There’s a lot to like about Chutney Mary’s, a small restaurant located on the trendy Bangsar strip, known as Jalan Telawi. The dramatic use of color — red, purple, green, orange, gold — gives the place a bright, contemporary look that is also quintessentially Indian. The food is good, the price though on the high side, is appropriate for the location, quality of food and service. The waiters are exceptionally friendly and helpful.
More than 15 years ago, the first “upscale” Indian restaurants began appearing in Kuala Lumpur and in a city filled with curry joints, here where the first signs of white-tablecloth operations with aspirations to be more than just a mass feeding joint. These new restaurants were eclectic, exciting, expensive and successful — and yes, they were fast catching on, especially amongst the elite and classy folks of Kuala Lumpur, the upmarket location of Bangsar heading the pack.
Chutney Mary’s Indian chef clearly takes great care in buying and preparing ingredients to make authentic dishes from chiefly the North of India. The food and service are equally superb. Step in and already the more than helpful waiters are laying out the chutney dips on your table, something for you to nibble on, as you contemplate what to have for dinner. They hand you a menu and wait quietly for a signal that you might want their help. If not they, stand patiently on, awaiting your next move. Soon you decide and with a quick flourish, the waiters are gone – off to the kitchen to hand in your order to the Chef. In no time at all, tantalizing starters of crispy bhindi (crispy strips of ladies fingers) with assorted dips, more chutney dips and garlic naans make an appearance on your table. In minutes, dinner will be served.
A delicious specialty that you must not miss here is the Goan inspired Fish Vindaloo. This very hot dish is made with Indian spices, butter ghee, turmeric powder, vinegar, and chilies. The Tandoori Chicken is something I never fail to order. This spicy roasted chicken made in a Tandoor and seasoned with spicy yogurt and curry based sauce is somewhat of a legend here.
Chicken Tandoori – RM 14.90
Thanks to the Tandoori or Tandoor, which is an earthen oven used to roast the chicken, and that usually gets very hot, you get this nice crispy seasoned outer with a moist and delicious chicken interior that’s difficult to top. Another good northern specialty to go for is the Murgh Malai Kabob, chunks of chicken marinated in ginger-garlic paste, then mixed with cheese, cream, coriander, chili, cinnamon, and anisette, and cooked in a tandoori oven. Trust me when I stay that one of the highlights of eating at Chutney Mary’s is the fantastic Palak Paneer – a delicious, hearty North Indian dish prepared with spinach and Indian cheese. This traditional greens based vegetarian dish is rich, smooth, creamy with addictive paneer cubes that are just nicely chewy and add texture to the dish. And finally no meal is complete without the signature Butter Chicken dish, the Murg Makhani, that is one of the easiest Northern Indian dishes to order. Its gravy can be made as hot or mild as you like so it suits most palates. If you ask them to go easy on the chili, even children can eat this with great ease. The Murg Makhani, also tastes great with Kaali Daal (black lentils), naan and a green salad.
For dessert, try the ever so popular Gajar Halwa, a rich and sweet dessert (cooked in pure ghee) of grate carrots, chop cashew nuts, almonds, raisins cooked in milk, green cardamom, sugar and then garnished further with chopped cashew nuts, sliced almonds and raisins. This dessert can be served hot or at room temperature. And equally irresistible here is the Kulfi, a Northern Indian ice-cream which is denser and creamier than normal ice-cream, as well as the Gulab Jamun, an Indian milk product (buffalo milk) that is rolled into a ball together with some flour and then deep fried. It is then put into a sugar syrup flavored with cardamom seeds and rosewater, kewra or saffron. Trust me , if you have space, you really should try them all. Chutney Mary’s has one of the best Northern Indian desserts I have tried in KL. Definitely a must not miss.
[CHUHT-nee] From the East Indian word chatni, this spicy condiment contains fruit, vinegar, sugar and spices. It can range in texture from chunky to smooth and in degrees of spiciness from mild to hot. Chutney is a delicious accompaniment to curried dishes. The sweeter chutneys also make interesting bread spreads and are delicious served with cheese.
[Mary] Er.. not sure who Mary is but the food at [CHUHT-nee Mary] sure is fantastic.
[Chutney Mary] One of my favourite Northern Indian cuisine restaurants in Kuala Lumpur which serves my favourites dishes like Palak Paneer, Tandoori Chicken, Lamb Vindaloo, Biryani Rice and Kulfi.
The Butter Chicken – Murg Makhani – RM 18.90
Briyani Rice – RM 9.90
Kulfi a.k.a. spiced Ice Cream – RM 9.90
Gajjar Halwa – RM 6.90
Gulab Jamun – RM 6.90Google Maps