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Malabar House

Fort Cochin, Kerala

The restaurant here – Malabar Junction – has a lovely indoor setting, not air-conditioned but open to the lush courtyard with its tropical plants, palms and hibiscus trees. In winter, seats are placed outside in the shade and come the evening it’s a great spot for a romantic dinner. There is also a small stage area in the courtyard, where during the early evenings Kathakali and other cultural performances take place.

The restaurant has a reputation as one of the best in Kochi and rightly so, as the food here can be spectacular. Take advantage of the good wine selection and ask for a recommendation. The gnocchi, for instance, paired with rose wine, was a winner for us.

Breakfast is as good as one would expect: a full spread covering both Indian and continental options.

From the courtyard, climb an external staircase to Divine, a well-stocked wine bar with a small terrace. Inside, scarlet leather bar stools and polished wicker chairs populate yet another super, stylish space. Cocktails and other aperitifs are served but wine is the focus, including a good Indian selection, a rarity indeed. Food is also available here, fusion and tapas-style.

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A wide range of options, ranging from north Indian (palak kofta, dal and roti for example) to a scrumptious local, seafood platter. Continental and fusion dishes also hit the mark, and for dessert lovers the chocolate samosas along with homemade ice cream must not be missed.

Dining nearby

There are some great little cafes around Fort Cochin. Kashi Café on nearby Burgar Street has delicious homemade cakes and some cool art on display. Teapot Café on Peter Celli Street, behind the basilica, is a really cute place with great teas and awesome chocolate cake. Either place is also good for snacks or a light lunch.

Do check out Old Harbour Hotel on Tower Road, over by the fishing nets. This hotel has a lovely dining area in its large walled garden, especially nice for a romantic dinner, and with good Keralan and Continental dishes.

Also see our guide to eating in Cochin.

Type Boutique hotel
Rooms 17
Children Yes
Closed Never