When in Chennai, you know ECR is THE route to escape the ‘hustle and bustle’ of the ubiquitous stressful work/study life, so much so that it’s now become a ritual for people to just chill along the many places that have come along this road nearly every weekend! Of course, the stress here is on the place being as de-stressing as ever, and that’s where a quaint restaurant like East Coast at Madras Square makes its mark. We were here on a Friday for dinner and thanks to Google Maps, we could figure out exactly where it was. Tucked away inside the bylanes of ECR, locating it is the only challenge. Once you reach there, the ambiance is just enough to take your breath away. The calming greenery, the casual sea breeze, and an indoor seating with big glass windows and lovely drapes, the subtle and extremely pleasing fragrance of the room, the ambiance are simply on point for a quiet, dawdling meal!
We kicked it off with some mocktails – Strawberry Basil Crush, Kokum Sharbat and Litchi Lemonade. The Kokum Sharbat was our pick of the night, punchy yet refreshing with a unique taste. The other two lacked the intensity of flavor that their names had promised.
Famished, we decided to go all in with the appetizers, vegetarian and non-vegetarian. We tried the Watermelon & Feta Salad, Sambousik Jibneh, Bruschetta and Veg Quesadilla. The Sambousik Jibneh was a thin flour casing wrapped cheese stuffing with a spicy dip on the side that was an extremely great appetizer. Loved the subtle cheesiness with the adjustable spice levels of this. Veg Quesadilla was another one of our favorites. The right amount of filling to the outer bread, cheesy enough to make it extremely scrumptious. The Salad was the right palate refresher in between and undeniably fresh with a killer combo of watermelon and feta.
We also tried the Panko Parmesan Chicken Strips and BBQ Chicken Wings. The Chicken Tender with the Spicy Mayo dip was super juicy and crunchy. Loved it to the very last bit. The Chicken Wings were doused in sauce and will go well for all Wings lovers.
With the great spread of appetizers, we also wanted to try their pizzas, having heard rave reviews about it. We had the Pizza Margherita and Pizza Diavolo. Another advantage here is that you can ask for half-n-half pizzas, so it’s gonna be great if you come in with a smaller diverse group who’s gonna want different toppings. The Pizzas were lip-smackingly yum. Cheesy (like pull-apart-the-strings-of-cheese kinda cheesy), a thin foldable pizza crust and ample toppings that gave the pizza the oomph lift. The Margherita was especially our favorite.
As we were entering the restaurant’s indoor seating we couldn’t help but notice the refrigerator in the outdoors with such eye soothing desserts. Having had the perfect relaxed meal we’d hoped for on a weekday, we simply had to go for the desserts as well. We tried the:
Triple Chocolate Mousse Cake – Sinful layer on layer, soft, creamy and lick-it-off-the-spoon delicious.
Blueberry Cheesecake – Super light with a strong hit of blueberry in it, again SO worth it.
Salted Caramel Chocolate Cake – Gooey, moist (no other word to describe that!) and extremely packed with flavor. Not a very sweet dessert though and being a fan of Salted Caramel, this was a dessert made in heaven for me.
The quantity of the dishes was ample, and as a group of 3, we had more than enough to satisfyingly complete our meal. The prices are a bit on the higher side but for the quantity, it is complete VFM if you go as a small group, unwinding over the weekend in this lovely getaway spot along the East Coast.
WTF METER FOR east coast at madras square, rAINTREE:
Ambiance – 10/10
Service – 7/10
Quality & Taste – 8/10
Quantity – 10/10
Beverages – 6/10
VFM – 8/10