Insti Food Survey 2022: Messes And Eateries

Note: T5E’s Insti Food Survey 2022 was conducted in October to critique insti’s messes and eateries and assess the nutritional intake of students at IIT Madras. The survey had 543 responses across the entire junta.

This article focuses on comparing the messes of insti across various attributes.

North Indian messes

Himalaya FF vs. Nilgiri GF & FF

The mean rating for the taste of food served is observed to be the highest for the Nilgiri ground and first-floor messes with around 2.2 and lowest in Himalaya (first-floor right) with 1.84.

Nilgiri ground and first-floor mess received the highest rating with around 3.0 for a rating of quantity served, and Himalaya FF right and left have received very close mean values.

Rating of Cleanliness and Seat Availability:

The highest average rating received for cleanliness in the messes serving North Indian food is 2.6 (which is considerably low), and that is observed for Niligiri GF and FF mess. This is followed by Himalaya first floor left and right with a decrease of 0.2 for each.

Seat availability in all the messes serving North Indian food is almost similar and in the range of 3.5 with a slight increase in the order: Himalaya first floor right, Himalaya first floor left, and Nilgiri ground and first floor.

Waiting time in queue:

The diversity in extras for vegetarians and non-vegetarians is rated better in the Himalaya FF mess and is one of the few things one can look forward to in the Himalaya FF mess. The value for money spent on extras is also highly rated in the Himalaya FF mess, although waiting time can be slightly higher. If you thrive on extras, then Himalaya FF Right mess is a mess you can look forward to.

All the messes predominantly have a waiting time of fewer than 10 minutes.


  • Apart from the extras in consideration, Nilgiri ground and first floor are better options if you are opting for a North-Indian mess considering the taste, cleanliness, quantity served, and seat availability.
  • For a person who thrives on extras, Himalaya FF Right mess is a better option considering the diversity, value for money, and waiting time.


Even though Himalaya FF Right and Left are run by the same caterers, only one of those (Himalaya FF Right) has extras, which is why they are considered different messes here.

South Indian messes in Insti

Let’s compare the south indian messes across various attributes and evaluate their performance.

Himalaya GF vs. Himalaya SF

There is no difference in the taste of the food served by the two caterers, and the mean rating for both is 2.7.

Though there is no difference in the taste of the food, there is a slight difference in quantity, cleanliness, seat availability, and staff behavior, with Himalaya’s second floor taking the edge on all of the above parameters. In terms of quantity served, Himalaya SF gets 3.3 which is 0.3 points higher than Himalaya GF rating of 3.0. The same goes for seat availability with Himalaya SF at 3.8 compared to 3.4 on the Ground floor. The difference is fuzzy when cleanliness and staff behavior is compared, with a difference of 0.1 in both cases.

In terms of the regular mess menu, Himalaya’s second floor is clearly a better choice, but when we talk about extras, the flips with the ground floor having a better rating than the second floor. Respondents found GF Extras to provide more value for money, with a mean rating of 2.8 compared to 2.6 for SF. You may also have to wait slightly longer if you order extras in SF than GF.


  • If only the regular mess menu is considered, then Himalaya second floor is a better option in all the parameters evaluated.
  • If you are someone who frequently eats at outside restaurants or orders frequently, then the ground floor is a more suitable choice for you due to its relatively better extras.

Food courts

Nilgiri SF vs Vindhya FF FCs:

Among all the available messes in the institute, Food Courts are the most in demand. The food court system allows students to make their pick from the diverse set of items on the food court menu using a fixed mess amount. The institute has two food courts: Nilgiri Second Floor and Vindhya First Floor. 

Taste is better in Nilgiri SF when compared to Vindhya FF, and Seat Availability is better in Vindhya FC. The Waiting time is too long in both the Food Courts.

Anjappar restaurant

Anjappar was a famous eatery in insti. The mean ratings for Anjappar were unsatisfactory all round with complaints regarding poor quality of food being elucidated in mail threads. When it comes to hygiene, it was rated 2.33 out of 5. The quantity served relative to price is also subject to criticism which was rated 2.76 out of 5. The waiting time was deemed too long as well. 

Vindhya GF Mess

There is no diversity in veg extras in Vindhya mess, and the quality-to-price ratio for extras is low. Seat availability, staff behavior, and quantity served are good. The waiting time in the Vindhya mess is less. Nearly 50% of people only wait for 0-5 minutes.


  • In conclusion, the survey states that on average, the taste of food is better in Nilgiri SF when compared to Vindhya FF.
  • The mean ratings for Anjappar in all aspects were unsatisfactory. 
  • There is no diversity in veg extras in Vindhya mess, and the quality-to-price ratio for extras is low. Seat availability, staff behavior, and quantity served are good comparatively.


SF: Second Floor

FF: First Floor

GF: Ground Floor

Himalaya, Nilgiri and Vindhya are centralized messes that serve the insti populace. Nilgiri SF and Vindhya FF house a food court instead of a traditional prepaid, fixed menu mess.

Aditya A
Keerthana Sri

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