Jannal Kadai, Chennai, India

I have eaten at this iconic window in Mylapore in my home city of Chennai numerous times. It is easily one of my most favorite street spots ever. However, just a few days ago one of the faces behind the window- Sivaramakrishnan (Ramesh), succumbed to covid.

At Jannal Kadai (literally translated as window shop) near the Kapaleeswarar Temple, Ramesh or his brother Chandrashekar would be seated at this window every morning at 7:00 AM – 10:00 AM, dishing out breakfast eats straight from his kitchen to the lines of eagerly awaiting patrons and then again opening at 5:30 PM for an evening session of tiffin eats. 

I have pretty much sampled everything that was made in this tiny kitchen from vadais, dosas, idlis, bajjis, pongal – the list goes on and on. I cant even describe how delicious his food was, it was simple, tasty, heartfelt, homemade food. It was hard to get a good picture of Ramesh as he was camera averse but didn’t mind his food being clicked. 

My heart hurts to think that this window is open no more…..perhaps once the dust has settled on all this craziness and life limps back to normal, the window will open again and carry on this legacy.  In the meanwhile, I just want to thank you Ramesh, you perhaps never knew just how much a part of my life you have been and I will really miss you. RIP Sivaramakrishnan you truly were a culinary legend!