Iniavans: Comfort food for my Indian friend

With ChinChaiGuy

I hope you realize just how much a part of you food really is. You are what you eat – literally. Don’t you find it amazing that a simple thing like milk can eventually turn into hair, flesh, fat, nerves etc etc? Well, that’s all a baby eats for the first six months so whatever growth it experiences is all made from that milk! Just as amazing as how corn can turn into a mouthwatering USDA Prime Steak. But aside from being the very building blocks for your body, food has also a big role in programming your personality.

I know myself that even though I love a hamburger, the thing that I really cannot do without is rice and soy sauce. Same thing with my long time best friend, ChinChaiGuy. Being married to a Chinese girl, he has been made to eat Cantonese style steamed fish, herbal soups and the like almost every day. Exquisite cuisine to be sure — if you are Cantonese. But for my poor friend, what he really wants, even though he is a chin chai (not fussy) kind of guy, is to dig his fingers into some rice and spice!

Now I have eaten in Little India quite a few times and I will say this — It is good to go with an Indian friend. It’s one of the few places in Singapore that I sometimes feel like a foreigner. You know how many times I get the “Pffffttt” look when I ask for fork and spoon? They really can’t understand how we “chopstickers” can enjoy our food if we can’t lick it off our fingers. So when I am with my friend, he does all the ordering including getting the fork and spoon for me.

Now, even though I call him the ChinChaiGuy, he really isn’t all that Chin Chai. He does have restaurants that he would never go back to again and he did take a long time choosing a wife. (Well longer than me anyway and I am not Chin Chai ok?) So I can at least trust that he brought me to a decent place to eat.

This place sells South Indian food and that means lots of spicy goodness. The first thing that I would recommend is the Dum Briyani. For those who complained that the Briyani at Ali Nachia was a little to plain, you would be happy with this one. This is chicken Dum briyani and each and every grain of rice is coated with curry spices. I nearly thought I was eating rice mixed with curry, but then again that is what Dum Briyani is. 4/5

Now all the rest of the curries were pretty good as well. I enjoyed most of them, but you know, I just felt there was not one that stood head over the rest. Not that I can remember anyway, cos after a while, the taste of all that spice becomes un-differentiable and all I could sense was the heat. It was just like the first time ChinChaiGuy invited me to his home in Sec 1 and his mother’s curry was so hot that I spent the rest of the night gasping for air in the void deck. My friend, on the other hand, went home truly rejuvenated that day with enough fiery spice in him to prepare an equally fiery Sunday sermon that coming week. Just in case you want to hear what the curry did to the sermon, please click here. (Title of the sermon was: “Is there more to life than this?” It should have been “Is there more to life than curry?)


Overall a pretty decent meal, but then again it tastes much the same as many other Southern Indian eateries in Little India. I am not a big expert when it comes to spicy food and I must admit that I don’t really have a favourite place for South Indian food.

So where would you all recommend for a die die must try South Indian joint?

Iniavans Indian Cuisine

37 Chandar Road

Opening hours:


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