On one of our usual weekend food hunts, we decided to try out the banana leaf rice at Devi's Corner in Telawi. Coincidentally, the girlfriend was gonna have her hair cut in the area, so win-win for us because we get to omnomnom as well.
Pretty sure everyone knows that Telawi is growing in popularity as a food haven, housing a lot of KL's well known cafes and hipster joints. But not only that, they're also home to some of the best restaurants that serve banana leaf rice. The first being Sri Nirwana Maju, and the other is obviously Devi's Corner!
Having dined in Sri Nirwana Maju before, I must say there are some differences that set both places apart. The first is the availability of seats. In Sri Nirwana Maju, the place is more than often jam packed and its difficult to get a seat unless you're willing to queue. For Devi's Corner, the banana leaf rice segment is housed in the upper level of the restaurant, with plenty of places to sit.
I'll admit right off the bat that we thought we were hungrier than we actually were, so we ended up ordering more than what we can eat. You can practically see that the sauce was overflowing out of my leaf.
Service was prompt and we were served as soon as we were seated. For the mains we ordered a serving of Chicken Varuval, Mysore Mutton and some fried chicken. (Bad idea)
The Chicken Varuval was bursting forth with flavors and spices, and is best enjoyed with a drink if you aren't into spicy food. The Mysore Mutton on the other hand was a surprise. The compound of indian spices really gave the dish an aroma to die for, and the thick gravy goes very well with plain rice. The mutton was well cooked, I think it was braised instead of the usual roasted style (correct me if I'm wrong) and it results in a stew-like variation of the dish instead of the typical semi-dry dish. Overall very pleased with the mutton and would definitely come back for more of it. :)
Quite a generous serving of deep fried bitter gourd and papadum to help us buka selera. We were basically stuffing ourselves with these even after our dishes arrived.
The girlfriend's serving on her leaf which looks a lot more modest compared to mine. :D
The fried chicken. Nothing to shout home about, but it's well spiced and tender. Probably should have specified that we wanted some other part. Girlfriend liked it much better than I did, but maybe it has something to do with my having to eat chicken almost everyday growing up.
You can't really tell, but the curry on our rice is crab curry! Yums, you can really taste the difference and it was nice because the taste of coconut milk wasn't too overwhelming like the other curries. Not photographed but we also had crab rasam, best taken while it's hot because it's very jelak after it cools.
My "Let's Makan!" face. Obviously the food was tasty, but you can see that we've heavily favored the mutton more than the Chicken Varuval :P
Other diners enjoying their experience. I still think banana leaf rice is best eaten with your hands..but we didn't want our hands to smell of curry and spices that day, so we ended up eating with utensils.
The array of different dishes are laid out next to the cashier, so you can take a glimpse before having a seat if you don't know what to have. We've heard that the sotong (read: squid) is also not bad, so perhaps on our next visit we shall give that a try. :)
All in all, would say that it was well worth the visit and would also recommend those in the area who are craving banana leaf rice to give it a shot, especially if Sri Nirwana Maju is packed to the brim. On a last note, the price for dining between the two of us with 3 main dishes came up to less than RM50, which I would think is not too bad at all for banana leaf dining, no?
14, Jalan Telawi 2, Bangsar, 5
9100 Kuala Lumpur.
Tel No: +60 3-2282 7591
Bonus content! Please watch this. Like seriously. Especially if you want to learn how to eat banana leaf rice with the agility of a seasoned martial artist.
The Fatter Half.