If you have not been to Pondicherry, it is the stuff dreams are made up of. While for some, it is dunked in history, art and culture, for others, it is a piece of heaven in an otherwise busy and overpopulated land like India. But for most, the food in Pondicherry is the excuse to eat their weight in food.
A mishmash of Tamil and French cuisines, with influences from Dutch, Portuguese, Anglo-Indian, and Bengali cuisines, food in Pondicherry is the best of all worlds! While the tamarind in Tamil culture gets replaced, Indian staples like coconut and turmeric have found their way in a delicate balance to create a whole new world of gastronomy. In every nook and corner in Pondicherry, you will find a cafe or eatery popped up, like the town will never let you go hungry. But with so many places, you can literally lose your mind. That is where we come in handy. We have curated the ultimate food guide that you are going to need when in Pondicherry.
Ultimate guide for food in Pondicherry
Breakfast at Baker Street
No vacation is complete without a hearty breakfast and in Pondicherry, you can have the best one, courtesy Baker Street. This place opens up as early as 7.30 in the morning, so start your day early with their delectable offerings. For the flakiest croissants, buttery pastries, sticky chocolate escargots, burgers, sandwiches and pita pockets, sugary palmiers, cakes and mousses, this is your address. They also have some of the best street food in Pondicherry. So, rest assured, you can breakfast like a king!
Address: 123, Bussy Street Near Clock Tower, MG Road Area, Puducherry, 605001
The best crepes at Crêpe in Touch
From savoury buckwheat crepes with fillings like cherry tomatoes, pesto, fresh cream, eggs, bacon, ham, and more to the sweet classics like crepes drenched in butter and dusted with sugar or filled with gooey chocolate spread and caramelised bananas, you will get all things crepe here.
Address: No. 29, Needarajapaiyer St, MG Road Area, Puducherry, 605001
Café des Arts for the most Instagrammable spot
If you are looking for the best restaurants in Pondicherry to populate your Instagram feed, this would be your #1 destination. Disclaimer first, their food is nothing extraordinary, but the interiors and the ambience with dated furniture, vintage typewriters, gramophones, and an interesting selection of books will make your visit worth it.
Address: 10, Suffren St, White Town, Puducherry, 605001
The best of French food at Les Saveurs
For the closest and most accurate rendition of French food in Pondicherry, this eatery does a pretty good job. Fill up your plate with their Shrimp Cakes, Chermoula-spiced Chicken Tenders, Eggplant Galettes, Ratatouilles, Lobster Thermidor and Salmon Wellingtons. Finish it all up with a glass of wine.
Address: 36, Dumas St, White Town, Puducherry, 605001
Eat alfresco in a villa at Villa Shanti
Even if you have not been to Pondicherry there’s a high chance that you have heard of this place. One of the absolute best restaurants in Pondicherry, Villa Shanti will transport you to a different world. Housed in a restored villa painted in muted shades of grey and beige, this place is exactly the kind of calm you need to disconnect from the cacophony of big cities. Eat alfresco at the verandah or the courtyard of the villa.
Address: 14, Suffren St, White Town, Puducherry, 605001
Samosas near South Boulevard
You will probably wonder why someone would have samosas when in Pondicherry. Wait until you try their mutton samosa, one of the best street foods in Pondicherry that rank pretty high among the locals.
Address: South Boulevard, Puducherry-605001
Bondas on Mission Street
Popular South Indian snack medu vadas are called bondas here. The love for pakoras that Indians have, Mission Street is the best place to satiate them. One unique thing you will find here is the Mushroom bonda that they sell. So head over to Mission Street for some of the best street food in Pondicherry.
Address: Mission St, Puducherry-605001
Storytellers Bar for some interesting cocktails
If the name isn’t interesting enough to get you hooked, step in for their interesting cocktails. Try the French Toast, a cognac-based cocktail, and the Chocolate Filter Kapi, a whiskey cocktail made with locally sourced chocolate and served in a traditional devara.
Address: The Promenade Basement, 23, Goubert Ave, White Town, Puducherry, 605001
Best of French-Tamil cuisine at Maison Perumal
Step inside this traditional Tamil house and gorge on their lip-smacking Tamil-French offerings. From Muttai Kuzhambhu, Vada Curry, Sutta era and Milagu Kozhi, to cocktails named after like notable personalities like Pedro Kanakaraya and Dubash Ranga Pillai, this place is an absolute delight for some of the best food in Pondicherry.
Address: 44, 58, Perumal Koil St, Heritage Town, Puducherry, 605001
Coromandel Café for the best experience overall
Formerly called La Maison Rose, this place was voted in India’s Top 50 Restaurants for a reason. Nestled in a French-era mansion with thick walls and high ceilings, this place is as cosy as a place can get! With furniture from the colonial era, muted lighting, and a carefully curated menu, every item here is made from locally sourced farm fresh ingredients. Their house specials are Posh N’ Pink Tagliatelle, hot pink eggs Benedict, and flatbread with pink hummus. They also have the best Andaman Prawns and Mango Pad Thai Salad you will ever come across.
Address: 8, Romain Rolland St, White Town, Puducherry, 605001
Hero Image: Courtesy Kaushik Murali/Unsplash; Featured Image: Courtesy Coromandel Cafe/Instagram