Just had dinner at the [relatively] new Dakhani Degh restaurant at Chacka Jn., Thiruvananthapuram (just around the corner – towards the Petta-Palayam road). I had heard good words being spoken about the place and couldn't wait to check it out. The very thought that there's a potentially good untested (by me) restaurant in the city had made me restless. Talk about the pressures of being the local gourmand ;-)
Dakhani Degh is a restaurant (probably a chain of restaurants) specializing in Hyderabadi cuisine - most notably the Hyderabadi Dum Biryani (or HDB - as these people call it). To be frank, I have never tasted authentic Hyderabadi Biryani, till now, that is. The word 'Dakhani' is derived from 'Deccan' - revealing the Hyderabad connection and 'Degh' is the copper vessel used for cooking (info from the menu card).
The specialty of the restaurant is of course the Biryani - with very less oil in it. In fact, their USP is non-sticky fingers once you've completed devouring your serving of their Biryani.
We tried the Chicken Biryani ('Regular' serving - Rs. 150 - enough for at least 1.5 fellow gluttons) and some Kebabs. The Kebab was quite good and so was the Biryani. The restaurant lived up to its promise - we did end up with non-sticky fingers. This was indeed a first in the list of Biryanis I've had. Two thumbs up!
The only problem, if I should find one, with the restaurant is that it's a Chicken Biryani special restaurant. There's not much of anything else in the menu card – apart from a couple of rotis and a few varieties of Kebabs. Mutton Biryani is on the menu only on weekends. And if you are a vegetarian, go some place else; there's nothing to see here. The desserts/drinks section had only ice-creams, Lassi and buttermilk. The (sweet) Lassi was not too great either.
Anyway, if you're looking for some great Biryani experience in the city, I'd strongly recommend the Dakhani Degh restaurant at Chacka Jn. Go give it a try, and let me know how you felt it.
PS: As always, Wikipedia has pages on Biryani and the Hyderabadi Biryani.