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Restaurants & Bars

Chennai Hoppers in Gaithersburg - Report

Steve | Dec 16, 202109:28 AM    

Seven Chowhounds got together to try this upscale South Indian place in Montgomery County. Some folks had read about it from a review in The Washington Post. For me, it's been a long time since eating on white tablecloths, which always come in handy in case you run short on napkins.

It's a big menu, and we were drawn to the many fritters, pancakes, and other starchy items not so easy to find elsewhere. Perhaps another visit that relied mostly on grilled meats and vegetables would produce a different repast, so plenty of the menu went unexplored. We ordered:

Fritters of
Street samosas
Cheppankizhangu 65 (taro slices coated in gun powder)
Uthiri onion pakoda

Breads:
khottu parotta
Kashmiri naan

Pancakes:
Virudhunagar chukha kari dosa
Mysore masala dosa
Uthappam with Chili

Goat biryani

And sauced:
Sambhar vada
Goat Paya

The standout was the very thick pancake of the kari dosa with lamb. This is a specialty treat from Madurai. It is quite a meal unto itself and I strongly encourage you to get this.

The fritters were all very well executed, but not necessarily worth a special trip. I've never met a kotthu parotta (shredded bread) I didn't like, this was well liked by all. Kashmiri naan is more like a dessert with a fruity paste.

Sambar vada were very large fluffy balls of a vada mixture soaked in a bowl of gravy. The lightness of the vada was remarkable. Goat feet were quite good. The biryani was good for a restaurant biryani, which in general has quite a simple taste.

I would go back for the kari dosa and explore more options.

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