Online edition of India's National Newspaper
Monday, Jul 12, 2004

About Us
Contact Us
Metro Plus
Published on Mondays

Features: Magazine | Literary Review | Life | Metro Plus | Open Page | Education Plus | Book Review | Business | SciTech | Entertainment | Young World | Property Plus | Quest | Folio |

Metro Plus    Bangalore    Chennai    Coimbatore    Delhi    Hyderabad    Kochi    Madurai    Tiruchirapalli    Thiruvananthapuram    Vijayawada    Visakhapatnam   

Printer Friendly Page Send this Article to a Friend

Chappattis unlimited

Besides the North Indian menu and taste, of course, the attraction of Shank Wala is the "unlimited chappattis" served to the customers, says T. SARAVANAN.


FOR THOSE wanting a break from traditional South Indian lunch, the `Bombay Meals' offered by the Shank Wala is just the right place.

Situated in the heart of the city, the eat-out attracts numerous North Indian customers. Ask why? Besides the North Indian menu and taste, of course, the attraction of Shank Wala is the "unlimited chappattis" served to the customers.

"How many `chappattis' would you like to eat, 30, 40? Don't hesitate. Order your requirement and we will provide," says S. Ramlal, one of the proprietors, flashing a smile. "Our menu includes three sabzis, one dal, curd, papad, mango pickle, onion and cucumber or beetroot and cabbage salad, mango juice apart from the `chappattis' and cooked rice," he goes on.

Established in 1957 by his father L. Sardarmal Rajpurohit, Shank Wala was a big hit then. Migrated from Jalore district in Rajasthan, Mr. Sardarmal with all the experience he had in the industry as a cook, opened this joint near the South Tower of the Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple. But after couple of years' struggle, he shifted the restaurant to adjacent street, where it started flourishing. "We started the restaurant near the temple to attract North Indian pilgrims. But soon realised that alone will not generate enough business and so we shifted to the busy Jadamuni Koil Street, where the response from North Indians working in the textile showrooms was overwhelming," Mr.Ramlal shares, not forgetting his "South Indian customers who too brought him business."

Given the USP of unlimited "chapattis" right from day one the restaurant was started, Mr.Ramlal recounts how he has had customers consuming more than 50 `chappattis' at a time. "I know our customers come to us for our soft "chappattis', so we never restrict the number." In the initial days the Shank Wala `Bombay Meals' offered two sabzis along with its famous chappattis for One rupee. Over the years, other items were added and the cost went up by 40 times. Mr.Ramlal unhesitatingly reveals his recipe for success: "Though North Indians use lot of oil and "garam masala" while cooking, we avoid these and try to give our customers health food by using more turmeric and coriander leaves in our items".

The restaurant, which opens at 11 a.m. for lunch and extends upto 3.30 p.m. and again from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., is totally run by the family members and hence they claim to maintain "absolutely healthy standards".

"We have never employed any outsider," Mr.Ram Lal asserts, adding that business is particularly brisk during the Deepavali and Navarthiri festivals. They also pack food items for the convenience of travelling tourists or pilgrims. "We usually parcel "puris" for our customers as they remain good for four to five days," he says.

Besides allowing people to host lunch within their premises - for which order has to be placed a week in advance, the restauranteurs also take orders of sizes more than 100. "We take big orders only as then we shift our entire workforce to the venue for preparations. The cost is fixed on the basis of number of items selected," informs Mr. Ramlal.

He does not have lofty ambitions but possesses a diehard desire to retain the name and fame of his father. And this can be achieved, he knows, by "maintaining the quality of food".

Printer friendly page  
Send this article to Friends by E-Mail

Metro Plus    Bangalore    Chennai    Coimbatore    Delhi    Hyderabad    Kochi    Madurai    Tiruchirapalli    Thiruvananthapuram    Vijayawada    Visakhapatnam   

Features: Magazine | Literary Review | Life | Metro Plus | Open Page | Education Plus | Book Review | Business | SciTech | Entertainment | Young World | Property Plus | Quest | Folio |


The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | The Hindu eBooks | Home |

Comments to : thehindu@vsnl.com   Copyright 2004, The Hindu
Republication or redissemination of the contents of this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of The Hindu