Saturday, 13 August 2016

Restoran Shanmuga Vilas @ Tanjung Malim, Perak

Having started in the year 1959, Shanmuga Vilas is the oldest Indian restaurant in Tanjung Malim, Perak. Then, there was another one called Sorna Vilas which was just a few doors away but sadly, they went bankrupt in the late 90's. 

The Restaurant Along Jalan Douglas
After the town council closed up the main trunk road heading into town, business had been very much affected for most of these restaurants that are located in the original town of Tanjung Malim. Today, the other side that used to be non existent till around ten years back has become the new town and is busy all day long. Despite that, the food here is still the best taste wise. I have not come here in a while myself and having missed some good South Indian food for a while, I decided to have dinner here this evening. This restaurant is located along Jalan Douglas, right opposite AmBank.

Iced Teh O @ RM 1.50
The common Teh O Ais that we get everywhere and I loved the way they had fixed the drink here. Even tea of coffee, is good here and you get the taste that you get from those authentic Tamil restaurants. As for this drink, I would rate it at 9/10.

Idli @ RM 0.80 each with Sambar
Business isn't as good as it was and somehow they are pulling through and that is the reason why you may get banana leaves that have turned yellow. But rest assured, the food is great. Idli here is priced at 80 sen each while in other restaurants in town, it is priced at RM 1.00 each and it is fluffier here. As for the Idli, I would rate it at 9/10. The Sambar is excellent. You get the same taste that you find in Tamil Nadu. Completely different to the other Tamil restaurants. In fact, the Sambar here is so good that I would bravely say that it is probably better than all the ones that are listed as the top ten banana leaf restaurants in the Klang Valley. I just love it and it comes rich with vegetables. Their Sambar surely deserves a 10/10. 

Tosai @ RM 1.50 each with Sambar
Tosai is another item that I would highly recommend here. Elsewhere in town, Tosai is priced at RM 2.00 each but here it is RM 1.50 only. Please do not think that every item is cheaper here. It is only these two items that are cheaper here and the rest are much more expensive to be honest. Nevertheless, truly worth it. The Tosai here is so good that you could eat it on its own. I wonder how they make it like that. It's just so different from the rest. I would rate their Tosai at 10/10.

Onion Bajji @ RM 4.00 with Onion Gravy @ RM 0.50
Yes, you read it right. The Onion Bajji is expensive here. For eight small pieces, I was charged RM 4.00  and another 50 sen for the Onion gravy. But the Bajji was quite unique in that sense. It wasn't just floor and onions but they had also added dhall in the preparation. For the taste, yes I am willing to pay the premium price. I would rate their Onion Bajji at 9/10. The Onion gravy was a chargeable item too. The thing with this restaurant is that they do a lot of unique dishes but end of day, everything is a chargeable item. Even if you sit in for a Banana Leaf meal, it's not a fixed price and the rate would vary based on the gravies and veggies that you take. And the same applies to their non vegetarian items as well. They would not only charge a base price and above that, the charge would vary based on the portion consumed. So that's the tricky part. Coming back to this Onion gravy, I would say that it was superb. See how concentrated it is and they had used a lot of small onions that resulted in the gravy tasting so good. I doubt you can still find this kind of quality in Kuala Lumpur. For the Onion gravy, I would rate it at 10/10. Did I mind the extra charge? Not at all. 

Vadai @ RM 0.80 each with Sambar, Cabbage with Dhall and Broccoli Acar 
Vadai is not so great here and is slightly smaller. But the Sambar  was heavenly and so it went very well with that. For coconut chutney lovers, do try their chutney too. It is super good and way better than perhaps any chutney that you may have tried. As for the Vadai, I would rate it at 7/10. I had also asked for some veggies and they served me Cabbage with Dhall and Broccoli Acar. Cabbage with dhall was good and I'd rate that at 8/10. Broccoli Acar is something that you don't commonly get at Indian restaurants and the preparation here was so tasty. Spicy, sour and crunchy it was. I loved it and would rate that at 10/10. Of yes, they charged me 50 sen for the vegetables. I didn't mind the extras as I really enjoyed them.

The above are the items that you get in this restaurant for dinner. Of course, you get Banana Leaf meals too and I would do another entry on the latter soon. So to summarise, good food but slightly premium prices. But if you are one that doesn't mind paying for some delicious food, then you should definitely give these place a try. 

Address: 6, Jalan Douglas, 35900 Tanjung Malim, Perak, Malaysia.

Telephone: +605 4596 041

Opening Hours: 0730 - 2130 Daily

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