In a sea of South Indian restaurants, Sri Muniyandi Vilas focuses on dishes from Chettinad, where, unlike much of South India, the cuisine is heavily nonvegetarian. The restaurant also specializes in Indian-Chinese cooking.
Chicken kothu paratha is a big winner, says zartemis. It’s a very large portion of well-spiced dark meat, served with curry sauce. “We’ll be getting this again frequently.” Pepper chicken is whole dark-meat pieces—most of the chicken here is dark meat—cooked in lots of onions and spices. There’s also complexly flavored chicken chettinad.
“Regular” biryani is actually Chettinad style, with egg, well-browned rice, and long-cooked spices. Meat (mutton or chicken) is served on the side, as is raita and curry sauce.
“I haven’t enjoyed the Indian Chinese dishes I’ve had elsewhere, but I like the all the ones we’ve tried at Muniyandi so far,” says zartemis. Maybe the best is the simple chili gobi, featuring cauliflower with a nicely fried crust and good heat. Sichuan chicken noodles, too, are surprisingly good. And if all else fails, there’s a wide range of the South Indian staples idli, dosa, and uttapam.
Sri Muniyandi Vilas [South Bay]
3064 El Camino Real, Santa Clara