Sri Ananda Bahwan is a small chain of curry shops, which started in Butterworth and spread onto Penang Island, along with other states in Malaysia, KL and (improbably?) India. There are even two branches (one vegetarian, one mixed) on the same road in Little India in Penang. We went to the mixed one. I had been before, but just had roti at one of the plastic tables they annex the road with when busy. This time, we would try some of the more exciting dishes.
Inside, it’s not either very attractive or awful. We went on a very busy evening, and picked up the last table, though turnover is high.
We had Gobi 65, which is coated cauliflower. Aromatic and crispy, it was a good version. Mock mutton curry (with carrot, rather than the usual potato) was really nicely flavoured, but the ‘mutton’ had been stewing for too long so was a little soft. Egg burji (described to me as like a bhaji) was actually scrambled egg with spices. Not very exciting, but nice with some of the curry sauces. Cheese naan might as well have been plain naan, sadly, while masala naan was stuffed with a slightly sour mashed curry of vegetables and was a lot better. These both came with a vegetable curry and yoghurt based green chilli sauce which I loved. Wife said fish curry was too big and too bony, while chicken tandoori was a bit dry and lacked flavour.
The staff are pretty friendly, even if it did take a while for drinks to come, and I chose a dish based on a description which was way off. I rather liked the majority of the food, but wife thought her meat and fish dishes were a bit dull. Maybe go veggie for a bit? I wouldn’t mind going back, but I realised afterwards that the bill seemed a bit higher than it should have. Do check. Also, you may encounter a homeless man on crutches. He is well known to staff and you can buy him dinner if you’d like.
Address: 55 Lebuh Penang, 10200 Georgetown, Penang