Chutney Mary Tasting Session

Chutney Mary Tasting Session
719 East Coast Road

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am - 10:30pm

This was an invited media review. I did not pay for the meal during the free hosted tasting session.
Attended with representatives from HungryGoWhere, and The Arctic Star.

North Indian Casual Bistro, With Some South Indian

(Ratings: On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 = Worst and 10 = Best)
Overall: 7
Ambience & Setting: 5
Food & Beverage: 8
Service: 7
Value for Money: 7
Budget about SGD $28 ++ per person.


Chutney Mary is a small, casual bistro in Siglap, that for the better part of a decade, has been serving up tasty, authentic, bistro quality North Indian and South Indian food. Despite very little media publicity, Chutney Mary has gained a strong following via word-of-mouth, securing its longevity amongst the highly competitive restaurants of the area.

Ambience at Chutney Mary is casual functional. The place is not built for comfort, furniture is simple and clean, and the atmosphere does live up to its 'fast food' tagline. While the place get a lot of natural sunlight during the day, the low ambient lighting within means very little light at night. Best for a quick meal, in fact, they also get a lot of takeaway orders.

Chutney Mary Exterior

Service at Chutney Mary is definitely above your average fast food outlet, more like bistro style service. Proper cutlery is used, which staff will help to change during your meal. They're also rather friendly, albeit somewhat halting with the English language. I also commend them for introducing the various dishes, decent product knowledge on their part.

Chutney Mary Interior

Food at Chutney Mary is primarily North Indian cuisine, which they do very well, with a small selection of South Indian dishes. Generally, I find food at Chutney Mary to be very tasty, delicious, and authentic, except for their chaat / street food snacks, which end up tasting similar due to the use of the same sauces. Portions are designed for communal dining, so individual dining is not recommended. Prices at Chutney Mary are similar to most mid-range bistros, budget about SGD $28 per person for a meal here.

North Indian Meal

The signature sauce / gravy here is a tangy, creamy blend of yoghurt, tamarind, and mint chutney. This is generously poured over the majority of the chaat / street snacks, such that the taste profile becomes almost similar dish to dish. Still, at least it's tasty! The Papri Pakori Chaat (SGD $7.50) features a base of crisp flour cakes, potatoes, ginger strips, and chickpeas, while the Pakori Chaat (SGD $7.50) features a base of soft lentil balls, potatoes, and ginger strips.

Papri Pakori Chaat (SGD $7.50)

Pakori Chaat (SGD $7.50)

Loved the Dhai Batata Puri (SGD $9), which has crisp, hollow semolina puff balls, filled with mashed potatoes, lentil dumplings, chickpeas, sweet yoghurt, tamarind chutney, mint chutney, green chili, and coriander. A delighful 1-bite mouthful, this chaat / street snack is absolutely delicious. Highly recommended!

Dhai Batata Puri (SGD $9)

The Pani Puri (SGD $9) allows you the experience of building your own chaat / street snack. Crisp, hollow semolina puff balls are served on the side with bean sprouts, mashed potato, chili powder, and a chilled tamarind chutney. Fill the puff balls with the ingredients, drizzle a little of the chutney into it, and eat it with 1 bite!

Pani Puri (SGD $9)

Our group gave the thumbs up to the Allu Tikki Channa (SGD $7.50), a savoury dish of pan fried potato patties, covered in a savoury spicy chickpea gravy, drizzled with mint chutney. The flavours are complex yet satisfiying, and the heat from the chili is manageable. Highly recommended!

Allu Tikki Channa (SGD $7.50)

Heaving eaten this in India several times, I have to say the Vada Pav (SGD $9) here isn't great. The potato patties are a little too firm in texture, and somewhat bland, quite disappointing. At least the buns are nicely grilled with a slightly crisp exterior, and the mixture of spices spread on it give it a lot of flavour.

Vada Pav (SGD $9)

Vada Pav

Loved the Chicken Tikka (SGD $13), with its meaty, juicy, well marinated, savoury boneless chunks of chicken meat. The juice of the chicken meat runs clear, and is tender in texture, yet the outside still has that smoky barbecue / grilled / tandoor aroma. Excellent, highly recommended!

Chicken Tikka (SGD $13)

Chicken Tikka

The Non Vegetarian Kebab Platter - Murgh Malai, Chicken Tikka, Fish Tikka, Mutton Seekh Kebab (SGD $19) is a medley of meat. The Chicken Tikka is consistently good, the Fish Tikka is decent, tender in texture with a mild marinade, but with a slight fishy taste. The Mutton Seekh Kebab was the most disappointing, dry and gamey. The Murgh Malai was pretty good though, tender with a smoky aroma. It seems they do much better chicken here, rather than fish or mutton.

Non Vegetarian Kebab Platter - Murgh Malai, Chicken Tikka, Fish Tikka, Mutton Seekh Kebab (SGD $19)

Non Vegetarian Kebab Platter - Murgh Malai, Chicken Tikka, Fish Tikka, Mutton Seekh Kebab

The Mutton Biryani With Papadum & Raita (SGD $16.50) is deceptive in looks; served in what looks like a tiny pot, the portion is actually large enough for 2 people. The biryani rice is nicely fragrant and the grains separate easily, I also like that it's not too oily! The mutton chunks are tender and moist, with a nicely savoury taste. I notice that they're more generous with the mutton here, rather than 1 large chunk, they've given many smaller, bite sized chunks. Well worth the higher price, highly recommended!

Mutton Biryani With Papadum & Raita (SGD $16.50)

Papadum & Raita

Mutton Biryani

The Palak Paneer (SGD $12) here is the 1st time I've seen an almost dry version of this curry. The spinach is thick and sticks together in clumps, making it easy to spread on the naan. It's still easy to eat, but it's odd without the usual gravy. The cottage cheese is made in-house, in bite sized chunks, and lends a smooth, creamy texture to the spinach. An overall decent dish.

Palak Paneer (SGD $12)

The Butter Chicken (SGD $13) features boneless chicken tikka simmered in a rich butter and tomato gravy. The texture of the chicken is perfect as usual, and imparts a smoky aroma to the dish. The rich, creamy, decadent sauce is utterly delicious, perfect for spreading over naan or rice. Very good, highly recommended!

Butter Chicken (SGD $13)

A warm pot of Pulau Jeera (SGD $9), this staple of rice uses the long grain version. Fragrant with grains that separate easily, the portion is large enough for 2 people, and sharing is recommended. Good when paired with wet curry dishes.

Pulau Jeera (SGD $9)

Loved the Dhaba Daal Makhani (SGD $11), with its rich, savoury taste and creamy, grainy texture from the black lentils. Perfect comfort food, pair it with either naan or rice. Warming, satisfiying, and comforting, I could finish a whole bowl of this!

Dhaba Daal Makhani (SGD $11)

The West Indian Goan Prawn Curry (SGD $14) is a fiery concoction with large, meaty, fresh deshelled prawns, in a savoury spicy coconut based gravy. Texture is a little thick than it should be, and it's not as spicy as the authentic version, which can be a good thing! Flavourful, great with naan or rice, and I note there is a decent portion of prawns within the curry too.

Goan Prawn Curry (SGD $14)

There are 3 varieties of Naan bread here, the Naan Plain (SGD $3), the Naan Butter (SGD $3), and the Naan Garlic (SGD $3). All of them are well executed, but since they all cost the same, the most value for money would be the Naan Garlic. Personally, I preferred the Naan Plain, which allows the full flavour of the curry to shine.

Naan Plain (SGD $3)

Naan Butter (SGD $3)

Naan Garlic (SGD $3)

Of the 2 types of kulfi here, the Kulfi Falooda Plain (SGD $8) was our favourite dessert of the evening, and won the stamp of approval from everyone, for its rich and creamy texture, milky flavour, and crunch of aromatic pistachios. The Kulfi Falooda Mango (SGD $8) was good but didn't fare as well, likely because the much stronger flavour of mango overwhelms the delicate milk flavour of this dessert.

Kulfi Falooda Plain (SGD $8)

Kulfi Falooda Mango (SGD $8)

I was wary when I saw this South Indian dessert on the menu, knowing that this bistro specialises in North Indian cuisine. Most places in Singapore can't get this right... Sadly, the Rasmalai (SGD $8) turned out to be the weakest dish we had here. While the texture of the cheese curd was properly firm, the cream was sour instead of sweet. Skip this.

Rasmalai (SGD $8)

Their other South Indian dessert, the Rasgulla (SGD $8), turned out pretty good. The cheese curd is nicely spongy and semi-firm, and has soaked up the light, sweet, clear syrup. Choose to have it either warm or chilled, personally, I prefer the warm version. Good!

Rasgulla (SGD $8)

The Gajar Halwa (SGD $7) is a sweet, North Indian dessert pudding whose main ingredient is grated carrot, hence the bright orange colour. Those eating it for the 1st time are usually surprised that this is a sweet dessert, not savoury. The version here is not overly sweet, with a nice chewy texture, and some crunch from the nuts. Good!

Gajar Halwa (SGD $7)

The classic North Indian dessert of Gulab Jamun (SGD $7) is well executed here. Semi-firm, spongy dough balls, which have soaked up the warm, light, sweet floral syrup, are utterly delicious. The kind of dessert I wish I could eat more of. Highly recommended!

Gulab Jamun (SGD $7)

Glad to do a decent Lassi Salted (SGD $5.50) here. It's properly savoury salty in taste, and pairs well with the much sweeter desserts, providing a nice contrast in flavour. Not recommended to pair with savoury food.

Lassi Salted (SGD $5.50)

The refreshing Lassi Mango (SGD $6.50) is much thinner in texture than elsewhere, but at least it has good mango flavour. Decent beverage.

Lassi Mango (SGD $6.50)

Overall, Chutney Mary impresses with its bistro quality North Indian food, and fast, casual service. While somewhat lacking in ambience, their concept is sound, no surprise they've outlasted most other restaurants in the Siglap area. I'm willing to return to Chutney Mary for more of their delicious food!