The spot on City Road where Ponnuswamy is located has been the home to a number of South Indian restaurants over the years. And, I pretty much always order the same thing.
Madras in Wales was the first I reviewed back in 2013
Kumar’s was the next incarnation to come along in 2014. One of my favourite restaurants in the ‘Diff, it sadly closed its doors last October.
Thankfully, another South Indian restaurant has taken over the reins in the form of Ponnuswamy.
The décor is still exactly the same as Kumar’s. The menu seems almost identical. And, it’s still BYOB.
A pair of idli (£3.25) were spongy, soft vehicles for the accompanying chutneys and sauces. They included a spicy tomato number, a chickeny lentil stew and coriander and creamy coconut chutneys.
Cauliflower Manchurian (£3.95) was every bit as good as Kumar’s version – pan fried cauliflower, peppers and onions with just the right amount of bite were bathed in a soy and chilli heavy Indo-Chinese sauce.
Lamb kothu parotta (£7) was also just as good as always. The comforting mix of shredded flatbread, tender lamb, tomatoes, onions, curry leaf and scrambled egg served with a bowl of curry sauce and raitha is still one of my all time favourite bits of comfort food.
A dish of parotta (£7.40) and chicken curry was good but not quite at the level of the other dishes – a pair of parottas were crisp and slightly elastic but they didn’t achieve the buttery flakiness of the very best examples. A coconut-based chicken curry meanwhile was well spiced and studded with a decent amount of tender meat.
Massala chai was creamy with a good hit of warming spice.
Overall, I was impressed with Ponnuswamy. If I’m looking for a plate of cauliflower manchurian and lamb kothu parotta, it’s definitely going to be my go to destination.
Despite being stuffed to the gills, we stopped off on the way back home at the recently opened So Good on City Road. This bakery and coffee shop specialises in baklava that they bake daily.
They were all impeccably fresh and tasty (and a box of six came to a very good value £2.25).
Highlights included hazelnut and pistachio varieties that were seriously crisp and not over-drenched in syrup. A pair of circular hazelnut and almond ones were also heroically good.
Address - 129 City Road, Cardiff, CF24 3BP
Web - http://ponnuswamy.co.uk/
Telephone - 02920 094 094
Address - 211a City Road, Cardiff, CF24 3JD
Telephone - 07565 605654