Eating your way through Ooty

We give you five tried and teste culinary destinations — a mix of new and old — that you need to check out on your next visit

Manasvi Pote 

Ooty’s a haven for nature lovers! That statement is severely underrated. With misty mornings, emerald valleys and enough chocolate to send you on a sugar rush for a week — Udhagamandalam, Ootacamund, Udhagai — call it what you want, but it’s still got its charm. What does one do, however, when hunger pangs strike amidst exploring all the town has to offer? Don’t worry! We’ve got you sorted. This guide ditches the tourist traps and dives into the real deliciousness Ooty has to offer. This guide is your passport to Ooty’s hidden gems – its fantastic food scene! We’re talking beyond the usual chai and overpriced chocolates. We’re diving into a world of flavour, from fancy fine-dining experiences to finger-lickin’ good street eats. So ditch the overpriced nonsense, build up an appetite and get ready for a food adventure that’s kind on your wallet, great for the gram and absolutely driven by the love for gourmand perfection. 

Celeste by Mindescapes 

Perched atop a hill, this restaurant offers not just breathtaking views of the town but also a culinary experience that’s nothing short of a symphony for your senses. The menu is a fusion of European and Pan Asian cuisines and an extravagant selection of exotic drinks. The chef’s special dishes include Cream and pan-seared Duck Breast with a Cherry Gastrique, Pork Ribs, Shepherds Pie and Chilli Garlic Noodles. Think artistic plating, impeccable service and an ambiance that whispers, ‘special occasion.’ Just remember, this one’s for those who like their meals with a side of sophistication. Meal for two: Rs 2,500 onwards. At Ketti Valley. 

Savoy – IHCL SeleQtions 

Savoy, a part of the IHCL SeleQtions portfolio, is more than just a restaurant; it’s an experience. This heritage property, established in the early 1900s, retains a certain colonial charm. The menu features European and Indian dishes, with a focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients. The highlight, however, is the extensive wine list, perfect for those who appreciate a good pairing with their meal. While the prices might be on the steeper side, the impeccable service, sophisticated ambiance and a touch of history make it a worthwhile indulgence.  Meal for two: Rs 3,000 onwards. At Monterosa Colony, Sylks Road. 

Earl’s Secret 

This sprawling restaurant offers a multi-cuisine menu, with everything from Chinese and Italian to Indian and Continental gracing their extensive list. Whether you’re in the mood for a hearty pizza, a comforting bowl of Butter Chicken or a steaming plate of momos, Earl’s Secret has you covered. Plus, the option to dine outdoors with stunning views of the The Nilgiris makes this place an absolute winner. Just be prepared for a bit of a wait, especially during peak season, as this popular spot tends to get very crowded.  Meal for two:  Rs 2,500 onwards. At Havelock Road, Pudumund. 

The Periodic Table

 The Periodic Table injects a healthy dose of fun into your fine-dining experience. The menu here is a playful take on the periodic table of elements, with dishes named after various elements and their properties. Feeling a bit ‘iron deficient’? Order the succulent Lamb Chops. Need a ‘calcium boost’? The creamy Cheese Fondue might be just the ticket. This restaurant is housed within a 150-year-old building, which was once the site of the first church school in Ooty. This restaurant is also perfect for those who appreciate a bit of whimsy with their meal, and the open kitchen allows you to witness the scientific magic.  Meal for two: Rs 1,500 onwards.

At Littlearth Square, Commissioner’s Road. 

Le CafÉ 

If you are someone who craves a relaxed coffee break with a European twist? Then look no further than Le Café! This cozy café offers a warm atmosphere, perfect for soaking in ‘Ooty vibes.’ Their menu features delicious coffee — a must-try for any caffeine enthusiast — alongside an assortment of delectable pastries and snacks. Whether you’re in the mood for a flaky croissant, a slice of rich chocolate cake or a savoury quiche, Le Café has something to satisfy your cravings. They also cater to families with kid-friendly options and occasional live music adds a touch of entertainment to your coffee break. Meal for two: Rs 1,200 onwards. At Littlearth Square, Commissioner’s Road..

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