In the generation of red spicy food, here is a Rayar Feast, A small nested mess located in Chennai’s rich city Mylapore (Arundale Street), serving hygienic hot idlis, Vada, Pongal, Podi and spicy karachutney.
It was founded as Rayars café by Srinivasa Rao, 70 years back and still its running successfully by their grandsons P.kumar and P.Mohan. “The only thing that has changed in the way we function is that we have moved on from grinding flour by hand into using grinders”, laughs Mohan.
It is so easy to miss the little place that seats just 16 people. Its owner, Mr. Kumar cooks all the items himself and that’s what attracts the people. The mess has seen its share of VIPs for generations, from V.K. Ramaswamy, ‘Thengai’ Srinivasan, Nagesh, Sreekanth (old actor) and Y.G. Parthsarathy etc. to Simbu, Surya, Sivakarthikeyan, Jeevan, VTV Ganesh…
I had leisure time spending with “Cho” Ramaswamy (Indian actor and political satirist) at Rayars mess, says S.Gurumoorthy (Journalist) at 47th Thuglak Anniversary. It is the place where people are treated with respect and cooking place is open to all customers, says Mr. Srinivasan a bank manager.
Customers are mostly regular and they like to travel from various places to have a “yellai saapaadu” (Meals served in banana leaf).
There are Phone bookings nowadays as well. But they are stubborn in not expanding the café. Since it may reduce their level of satisfying the needs of customers, says Kumar. Till now there is no billing system. It reflects their old customs.
NOTE: Rayar’s mess is open from 7am to 10am and 3pm to 6pm every day. They are closed on Sunday evenings. They are located at New no.31, Arundale Street, Mylapore, Chennai.