According to Chef Sricharan Venkatesh from Nadodi, there are even more banana leaf rice eateries here than in India! The following restaurants are T.Dining approved:

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Vishal Food & Catering

Specialising in traditional Chettinad cuisine from Tamil Nadu, Vishal's dishes are well-known for their complexity of flavours. Chettinad cuisine is characterised by the use of freshly ground spices such as cumin, star anise, fennel seeds, cinnamon, clove and bay leaf. If you have a tolerance for fiery dishes, order the Chettinad chicken curry prepared with freshly grated coconut. The quality of the food here certainly exceeds the establishment's humble facade, and the restaurant serves a full house during lunch hour every day of the week.

Vishal Food & Catering | 22 Scotts Road, Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur | 03-2274 0502

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Restaurant Sri Nirwana Maju

Famous for its fluffy basmati grains and rich curries, Sri Nirwana Maju is touted as one of the best banana leaf rice restaurants in KL. Each portion comes with three to four vegetarian sides including the highly addictive bitter gourd fritters. Speaking of deep-fried dishes, the tender yet crispy calamari is always a crowd pleaser, as are the fried chicken and fish.

Restaurant Sri Nirwana Maju | 43, Jalan Telawi 3, Bangsar Baru, Kuala Lumpur | 03-2287 8445

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Devi's Corner

Devi’s Corner holds a treasure throve of banana leaf rice dishes. The local secret is to head upstairs for more comfortable air-conditioned enclosures. Your regular banana leaf rice comes with three vegetable sides, a basket of papadum, deep-fried snake gourd and three condiments, which include dried chilis, cucumber raita, and sour pickles. The crab curry comes highly recommended and the Kerala Fish curry is also a crowd favourite.

Devi’s Corner | 14, Jalan Telawi 4, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur | 03-2282 7591

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Sri Ganapathi Mess

Tucked away in a residential neighbourhood in Petaling Jaya Old Town is this eatery in a single-storey bungalow. Sri Ganapathi Mess is a hideaway for those in the know of scrumptious Indian food. What makes it unique is the 'dine at home' experience. As you step into the porch of the restaurant, you're bound to feel tempted by the deep-fried dishes on display. True to the home-cooked image, Sri Ganapathi Mess offers crab rasam, a tangy soup that's believed to boost immunity. 

Sri Ganapathi Mess | 47, Jalan 1/10 Seksyen 1, Petaling Jaya, Selangor | 016-279 1384

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Kanna Curry House

There are few pleasures quite like enjoying fresh crab curry ladled onto steaming hot rice. Kanna Curry House is famed for its crustaceans infused with a secret blend of herbs and spices. The gravies and dishes are packed with spices and intensely rich, as expected of South Indian cuisine. Cool down with a tall glass of lassi—the creamy and tangy yoghurt-based beverage will provide some solace to your taste buds after experiencing high levels of spice.

Kanna Curry House | 27 & 29, Jalan 17/45 Seksyen 17, Petaling Jaya, Selangor | 03-7958 4814

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Fierce Curry House

Fierce Curry House take things up a notch by tantalising your taste buds with classic North Indian dishes, such as their signature Hyderabadi Dum Briyani. The Bir-Nana Set is a good way to experience both the briyani and the banana leaf thali, but don't overlook the naan breads, tandoori meats, and desserts. If you're able to splurge, order the signature Lobster Briyani—the aromatic saffron layered Hyderabadi Lobster Dum Briyani dish is served in a steel pot so large that the staff have to wheel it out on a trolley.

Fierce Curry House | 16, Jalan Kemuja, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur | 019-770 1945

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Appu Uncle Curry House

Appu Uncle Curry House will keep you on your toes while scrolling through their Facebook feed for news of their latest promotions. From all-you-can-eat banana leaf rice to weekend specialty dishes, you never know what the restaurant has to offer. Appu's signature Fierce Like Wife Fish Head Curry sees delightfully tender fish head with tangy and creamy curry.

Appu Uncle Curry House | 3, Jalan SS 22/19, Damansara Utama, Petaling Jaya, Selangor | 03-7932 3030

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Aunty Manju’s Banana Leaf Restaurant

Those in search of mutton bone marrow curry need not look further than Aunty Manju’s Banana Leaf Restaurant. The gravy, which comes with four portions of bone marrow, is perfectly cooked to the point where the meat practically falls off the bones. Inside each bone lies soft, juicy marrow that tastes as delectable as the tender flesh outside—possibly better. Enjoy the heavenly gravy alongside generous servings of vegetables, which pair wonderfully with hot steaming rice. 

Aunty Manju’s Banana Leaf Restaurant | 18, Jalan Tun Mohd Fuad 1, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Kuala Lumpur | 03-7733 5954

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Ganga Café

Ganga Café thrives on its garden-to-plate concept and is fêted by the health-conscious for serving dishes that are free from MSG and food colouring. The Standard Thali set comes with the option of brown rice or two chapatis in addition to three vegetable dishes, two types of Dhal, one cup of rasam, papadam and one salad. Feel free to add on signatures dishes such as the Palak Paneer (pureed spinach with cottage cheese), Bhindi Masala (stir-fried okra), and Aloo Gobi (roasted cauliflower with potatoes).

The Ganga Café | 19, Lorong Kurau, Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur | 03-2284 2119

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Sri Vinayaga Curry House

The no-frills restaurant offers authentic Chettinad cuisine in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. Everything on the menu is a true reflection of honest and humble South Indian cooking. The tender Mutton Varuval (mutton served with a dry gravy) is our go-to side for accompanying banana leaf rice.

Sri Vinayaga Curry House | 17G, Jalan Wawasan 4/3, Bandar Baru Ampang, Kuala Lumpur | 016-396 2166

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Indian Spices Village

You can find an assortment of lip-smacking North and South Indian dishes here. Opt for the burung puyuh (quail) and ayam kampung (free-range chicken) with briyani, as it is uncommon to find these dishes in other Indian restaurants.

Indian Spices Village | 59, Ground Floor, Jalan Thambipillai, Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur | 03-2276 6484

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Puchong Chettinad Mess

Tucked away in an inconspicuous industrial area in Puchong, this quaint restaurant serves authentic banana leaf rice. They blend their own spices imported from India instead of using ready-mix spices from the supermarket. Service is also more swift compared to their competitors.

Puchong Chettinad Mess | First floor, 11-1, Jalan 7/9, Bandar Puteri Puchong, Selangor | 012-283 3788

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Mollagaa Restaurant

With a tagline like 'Namma Ooru Style' (translating to 'our village flavour'), it's little surprise that Mollagaa's dishes make Indian expatriates long for home. Pair your banana leaf rice with the Black Pepper Tossed Chicken Lollipops (the spice level is not for the faint of heart), the Fish 65, and the Karaikudi Fish Varuval.

Mollagaa Restaurant | 50A, Lebuh Ampang Kuala Lumpur | 016-552 6777

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Southern Spice Banana Leaf Restaurant

Those with a hankering for banana leaf rice in the wee hours of the morning can swing by Southern Spice Banana Leaf Restaurant, which operates from 5pm to 5am! You'll encounter tipplers trying to sober up with hearty dishes such as Butter Chicken Masala, Aloo Palak Panner (potato and pureed spinach with cottage cheese), and boneless mutton briyani.

Southern Spice Banana Leaf Restaurant | 8, Jalan Sahabat, Changkat Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur | 016-222 5552

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Moorthy’s Mathai Restaurant

Open since the 1960s and coming from humble beginnings, Moorthy's has become a precious family heirloom. The recipes with South Indian roots are passed from one generation to the next. A dish that has stood the test of time is the fried tenggiri (narrow barred Spanish mackerel)—its sweet flesh and spiced crispy exterior is extolled by fans of seafood.

Moorthy’s Mathai Restaurant | G-G-3A,Block G, Jalan PJU 1A/3, Ara Damansara, Petaling Jaya | 012-327 0122.

Tatler Asia
Above Photo: Moorthy’s Mathai Restaurant