Kannur offers a grand gastronomical experience which should not missed even by those on a day's visit here. Be it the Thalassery biryani teamed up with some spicy stir-fried mussels, a pot full of 'kudukkamoru' (spiced buttermilk) -- a speciality of the village tea shops in the region -- or some sweet aleesa, unnakkai or mutta surka from Payyambalam. To cherry top them, go for the chilled falooda from the Kannur beach.
If short on time to scour around the town for the apt eatery, head straight to Bamboo Fresh, a unique multi-cuisine restaurant at Thaliparamba. Like the name suggests, it is a bamboo-themed eatery where even the utensils are made of bamboo or wood.
The 10-page menu is filled with taste options from the land and beyond. The starters' row is ruled by sea food starting from squid, prawns and other fresh fishes. Try out the squid pepper fry that is dressed in an aromatic spice-mix; give it a moment, allow the rich scent of garlic, pepper and fresh coriander leaves to prepare your taste-buds for the onslaught. The squids are served fuming-hot and crunchy and come accompanied with a yogurt dip.
Chicken churuttu, small Kerala parathas with flaked chicken fillings, is another distinctive starter to try out at Bamboo Fresh. Each platter of starters would serve two passionate eaters. The piquant sea-food starters would be a perfect prologue to your main course.
Prawns 'ela' (leaf) biriyani is a master-stroke in taste and presentation by the Bamboo chef. It is wrapped in banana leaf and secured with banana fibre. The presentation seals the inviting aroma of the moderately toasted banana leaf and that of the prawns biryani till you are ready to dig in.
Bamboo Fresh has also got a comprehensive vegetarian menu which has some quirky flavours like mushroom pepper masala.
Take the pot full of 'kudukkamoru' - iced and chilled buttermilk, spiced with fine green chillies, chopped ginger and curry leaves – to finish off your brief, but enriching episode.
The Bamboo Fresh cuisine has a peculiarity that often turns out to be its drawback -- all the dishes, right from rice (biryani) to sweets and curries are way too oily. Also, the bright flush of the curries dominated by red and yellow would set off the excessive-colour-in-food alarm.
However, this authentic Malabari eatery is also popular for its spacious dining area, remarkable service and reasonable pricing. It has also got a spacious parking area and a 'thattukada' (street-side outlet) in the compound.