You don’t serve food, you serve years of tradition, love, generosity and hospitality in India! And when somebody visits her, the country takes its esteemed guest for a whirlwind culinary tour. She bestows upon him an array of such gastronomic delights and local delicacies, that his most memorable moment often becomes the times spent on the dining table! Not only that, every region lends its own distinctive flavors, ultimately creating what can be called ‘the fragrance of India’ that not only fill the atmosphere within, but also outside the country.
Today, let’s go explore some Indian restaurants in the United States that have been praised by connoisseurs and critics, and keep appearing in food lover’s guides year after year. It doesn’t come as a surprise that the list has New York, our own little India, written all over it. Being the food capital and harboring over 20,000 restaurants with approximately 65 restaurants per square mile, New York City has to be the tastiest city of them all!
Devi is the first Michelin-star Indian restaurant in the United States. Undoubtedly one of New York City’s best Indian restaurants, Chefs Hemant Mathur and Suvir Saran not only brings together flavors from various regions in India but also innovates them further to create, sheer magic. They have an array of scrumptious local fare and fusion delights, including their signature dishes, Tandoor-grilled lamb chops, spicy Goan scallops, Crispy Okra Salad and Manchurian Cauliflower which sells the most.
Amma is stylish, high-end, pricey, and has her own sommelier. This cozy place in Midtown East, New York City, has always been in news and in people’s all-time-favorite-Indian ever since its inception in 2002. Amma might be a small place but it is big on taste and hospitality! Its tasting menu, a seven course meal of 50$ (and 85$ with wine pairing) is a great way to sample local fares!
Tamarind, located in New York City’s bustling Flatiron district, is a fine example of upper crust, elegant and enchanting dining experience. The restaurant even has Tea Room, a comforting place where you can relax during your extended lunch hours. Tamarind Tribeca, by the same Walia owner, is an extension of their earlier success. Only this time, the project is more ambitious and exhaustive, including the food and wine carte du jour.
Chola, is an upscale restaurant in East Street, New York, with an eclectic menu featuring both North and South Indian cuisines. They even have vegan options! Surprisingly, the prices attached to these delights are quite reasonable, with some exceptions, of course. Chola specialities are Chicken Chutneywala, Chingri Malai, Crispy Okra, Goat curry and Dosas, and their tasty lunch buffet at $15 is worth a try! Celebrities like Harrison ford, Woody Allen, Anthony Hopkins, Aishwarya Rai, Shahrukh Khan and Amitabh Bachchan amongst other stars, have had been here!
5 SARAVANAA BHAVAN
Located in 5 places – New Jersey, California, Georgia, New York and Florida, Saravanaa Bhavan is the ideal place to quench your burning thirst for authentic South Indian Vegetarian food. The menu is dominated by an array of dosas with different fillings, vadas, idlis, uttapams, hot and cold drinks, deserts, plus the ever popular thali. All these items are reasonably priced, but, here’s a slight warning…with that kind of price, don’t except lavish décor and great service.
Also in the list are Bukhara, Dhaba, Junoon and Dawat among many other upscale and casual dining places scattered all around the country. A big thanks to all of them for creating a comfortable atmosphere, for satisfying our cravings for Indian eats, and for serving food that makes us feel close to home.
Do you have a favorite Indian restaurant in the United States that you would like to recommend?