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Nov 16, 2009 04:30 AM

Malabari Food Festival at Maroli

Maroli is holding their second Malabari Food Festival at the end of November. I went to the first one and enjoyed the food since some of the dishes are closer to what I like. It's completely different from all the North Indian food you get in almost all other restaurants. Here is a link to the announcement on their website:

I'm hoping all the Indian food gurus on the board go and check it out as you need to try something different from what is widely available. After all, you could not be an expert on the Kama Sutra just by reading the first half of the book. :-



630 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6G1K7, CA

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  1. Does the 25 $ fee includes food?

    1 Reply
    1. re: garfield

      Yes I am sure it does as it did include it last year - actually even a beer was included then. Did you read the text at the link? It explains it there but maybe not clearly enough. The food is all laid out buffet style so you can go up again and try something else or more of what you liked.

    2. Thanks, have put this in my calendar.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Pincus

        Here is the thread from last year, to get an idea what it was like :

      2. Oh man, I am THERE! I love this place. Gotta try those bull nuts, maybe I'll finally find a preparation of them that I like.

        1. This is a good place, although I prefer the Keralan dishes at Anjappar Chettinad - having visited Kerala, I feel that Maroli sometimes cooks for a western palate. That being said, I was mad at myself for missing this event last year and will definitely be there this year.

          9 Replies
          1. re: childofthestorm

            Im going for the first time. It sounds amazing.

            1. re: domesticgodess

              It was a excellent selection of varities from Malabar during last years Food festival .
              Well it is the review of maroli on Toronto star that reminded of the food festival .

              1. re: michimo

                I hadn't seen that article as I don't read the Star but it's interesting that they also mentioned that most people are only familiar with North Indian food as I did in the initial post. That's only about 10% of all that is available and much of the other food is better, in my opinion.

            2. re: childofthestorm

              I love Anjappar too, but since I don't drive it is a wonderful luxury to have a place as good as Maroli on the subway line. I have talked others into going to Anjappar when they offered to drive :)

              630 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6G1K7, CA

              1. re: munchieHK

                Well Anjappar and Maroli are like
                Mexican and Greek food ,
                One is Malabari and other is Tamil - Both has their own identity .
                But could have few spices in identitical usage as they are neibouring states .
                my self being a tamil I love Karaikudi for tamil food than Anjappar .
                Hopefully we get to try lot more malabari dishes at the festival .

                1. re: michimo

                  Finally someone else who knows there is more to Indian food than Chicken Tikka and Butter Chicken. With all the diverse cuisine from India, it's too bad very little of it shows up in Toronto. I wish I could find the type of food my relatives cook, but you won't find it in any restaurant. But if it did exist, people here would say it's not authentic.

                  1. re: foodyDudey

                    I just...don't,,,get Butter Chicken. I have never seen it in India. I never saw it in Indian restaurants in Hong Kong (which are some of the best in the world, as they poach all the best chefs from India). In fact, Toronto is the first place I have seen it and moreover it seems to be some kind of benchmark for people here. I have tried it 3 times and each time thought it was awful. It is the antithesis of good Indian cuisine. What Big Macs are to hamburgers, Butter Chicken is to Indian food. An over sweet, over rich, over fat, over cooked concoction designed purely to cater to the Western palate. Can we not have a new benchmark? Best Uppams, maybe?

                    1. re: munchieHK

                      Proper butter chicken is made from left over Tandoori chicken, do if you don't have any of that left you can't make butter chicken the correct way. And if they use dried up tandoori chicken in the restos, you will probably get dry butter chicken.

                      For a new benchmark, how about looking for the best East Indian style pork vindaloo, since it's supposed to be made from pork, not beef or chicken? Click here to see what it should look like:
                      When no place in Toronto serves an real vindaloo, it's no wonder that hardly anyone knows what it should taste like.

                      1. re: munchieHK

                        Butter chicken is an actual Indian dish though, called Murgh Makhani, with roots in Delhi dating back to the Mughal Empire. I ate a remarkable version in Old Delhi a few years ago, mixing spicy with sweet with the smoky taste of the tandoor.

                        Of course, most butter chickens we are served here in Toronto are overly sweet and definitely geared to the Western palate, in the same way that your average Toronto pad thai is laden with ketchup.

              2. This is intriguing. I read The Star article as well and it definitely peaked my interest.

                It's true...most Indo-Pak restaurants in the GTA are northern-based, Mughali-inspired and the food is 'richer' relative to other regions of the subcontinent. More cream, clarified butter, almonds, cashews, paneers etc's thicker, richer and more 'luxurious' as it's roots are based on food the ruling Moghal Empire ate.

                I will definitely be checking out Ajnappar and Maroli at some point in time.

                I've commented in past posts about what a pitiful situation the Indo-Pak restaurant scene is here in the GTA. It's a disgrace as we are not living up to our potential.
                Somebody needs to come and raise the bar a notch or three.
                The food is nowhere near as good as it could be.

                1 Reply
                1. re: pakmode

                  In response to the OP: this is an excellent festival/buffet. We went last year -- the price included a beer, and the food was excellent. There was 16 or 17 dishes, plus pickles and chutneys and breads. Recommended.