A Culinary Journey to MTR Singapore: A Taste of South Indian Heritage

May 16, 2024

Introduction to MTR Singapore

Nestled in the vibrant streets of Serangoon Road, opposite the Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple, MTR Singapore offers a captivating experience of traditional South Indian vegetarian cuisine. This branch of the Mavalli Tiffin Rooms (MTR), which started back in 1924 in Bangalore, stands as a testament to the rich culinary heritage that has been preserved and cherished over the decades. MTR Singapore is not just a restaurant; it's a cultural gateway to the flavors of South India.

A Dive into the Menu

Upon stepping into MTR Singapore, you're greeted by an array of dishes that promise an authentic taste of South Indian vegetarian fare. The menu features a variety of dosas, idlis, and vadas, each prepared with meticulous care to ensure the authenticity and freshness of the flavors.

Photo: nnie Tokyo

One of the must-try dishes is the Pudi Masala Dosa, a large, fluffy pancake with a spicy chutney powder, smeared with ghee and a topping of potato-onion filling. This dish is a delightful blend of textures and fiery flavors that resonate with the traditional tastes of Karnataka. Another standout is the Uddin Vada, a savory doughnut made from lentils, which is crisp on the outside and soft inside, served warm with sambar and chutney for a satisfying crunch and flavor contrast.

Photo: Divyanshu Mahajan
Photo: Toms Arackal

For those who enjoy a lighter, yet equally flavorful option, the Rava Idly is perfect. Made from semolina and steamed with a blend of yoghurt, cashews, and spices, it’s served with a potato saagu and drizzled with clarified butter, offering a melt-in-your-mouth experience that’s both comforting and indulgent.

Photo: Lionel Low

The Dining Experience

The atmosphere at MTR Singapore is unpretentious and welcoming, with a focus on delivering a high-quality dining experience that mirrors the simplicity and richness of South Indian home cooking. The service is efficient, reflecting the restaurant's commitment to maintaining the culinary standards set by its Bangalore predecessor.

Photo: Kya Kaise

Unique Offerings and Cultural Ties

Beyond the standard menu, MTR Singapore goes the extra mile by including unique items like the Badam Kesari Bhath, a South Indian sweet dish made with saffron and almonds, offering a perfect end to a hearty meal. Each dish not only offers a taste but also tells the story of its origins, like the Set Dosa, a popular dish from Karnataka, served with vegetable saagu and chutney, which is a testament to the regional diversity of South Indian cuisine.

Photo: HL
Photo: Matthew Lee
Photo: Panuwong Yokying

Final Thoughts

MTR Singapore is more than just a restaurant; it's a culinary landmark that brings the essence of South Indian vegetarian cuisine to the heart of Singapore. With its commitment to authenticity and quality, MTR offers a dining experience that is both enriching and enjoyable, making it a must-visit for anyone looking to explore the rich flavors of India's southern regions. The prices range from S$5 to S$10 per person, making it an affordable option for those wanting to experience genuine South Indian food in a cosy dining setup​.

MTR Singapore
440 Serangoon Rd, Singapore 218134
Opening Hour:
Thursday, 8:30 am–3 pm, 5:30–10 pm
Friday, 8:30 am–3 pm, 5:30–10 pm
Saturday, 8:30 am–3:30 pm, 5:30–10 pm
Sunday, 8:30 am–3:30 pm, 5:30–10 pm
Monday, Closed
Tuesday, 8:30 am–3 pm, 5:30–10 pm
Wednesday, 8:30 am–3 pm, 5:30–10 pm



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