We all know what good service is. Ok, I lie. We don’t see it very often in India. But we all have an idea of what good service is – when everything clicks into place, when you feel a little surprised and delighted because of the thoughtfulness and smoothness. Ok, so this doesn’t happen often – most of the time, it doesn’t happen at all in restaurants in Bangalore. But I’ll save that rant for a Monday.
Today, I want to focus on what it takes to get service right. Rayalaseema Ruchulu provides authentic Rayalaseema cuisine. And yes, that means the food takes Andhra spice to a whole new level. Come prepared to sweat and cry.
The wait staff at Rayalaseema Ruchulu, while polite and helpful, don’t have the greatest communication skills. Here’s where the manager, Vijay Kumar, comes in. The first time I dined at the restaurant and raved about the special chutney of the day, he insisted on packing some for us to take home.
We asked him to recommend a few dishes and he gently urged us to try the Ragi Sangati with Gongura Mamsam. Vegetarians, get the Gongura Pappu – you’ll thank me.
He sent us dishes that weren’t on the menu yet, just to try them out. And before you ask, no, we weren’t charged for anything over and above what we ordered.
The second time, he recognised us from our previous visit. I asked him to help me navigate their extensive menu. Having stuffed ourselves to mythic proportions, we were contemplating dessert when, as if by magic, a khurbani ka meetha appeared under our oh-so-greedy noses. He sent three portions (complimentary) to our table and we protested vehemently, saying one would be enough. He was having none of it. It was like being at a friend’s house where despite multiple protestations, a mum or an aunt presses you to eat way more than you ever thought you could.
The third time, we landed there at 10.25 PM, which is Bangalore’s usual bedtime. Other restaurants would politely show you the door, obliging you to call home and ask mum what’s in the fridge. At Rayalaseema, I find Mr. Kumar, apologise for showing up at closing time, and ask if they are still open. He welcomes our party of ten and takes our orders at a leisurely pace. This visit was specifically for my friends to have a taste of the mamsam pulao. A taste so heavenly, it warranted braving the hellish traffic.
Indians are famed world-over for their hospitality. When we go to restaurants, we often wonder why. This is a reminder. Go to Rayalaseema Ruchulu, ask for Mr. Vijay Kumar. Let him show you why.
How to get there:
Where: Rayalaseema Ruchulu, Indiranagar 949, 1st Floor, 12th Main Road, Indiranagar, Bangalore
Contact: 080 49653467 (Table reservation recommended)
Timings: All days 12 Noon to 4 PM & 7 PM to 11 PM
Cost: ₹800 for two people