From paneer to pekora, raita to roti, the cuisine of India is so rich, varied, seasonal, and regional, that eating your way through the best Indian restaurants in New York could leave your tongue in a permanent state of nirvana. Get enlightened by the best, below.
– Kelly Dobkin
Ten-year-old Chola has a solid reputation as one of the city's best upscale Indian restaurants yet is relaxed enough to offer one of the best Indian lunch buffets in town. The golden masala dosas are paper thin and delightfully flavored. The menu of entrees represents nearly every region of India.
From curries to tandoor, Dawat's extensive menu of Indian delicacies is sure to leave any food lover satisfied. There's also a few tasting menu options of three, four, or five courses so you can custom-build your experience without breaking the bank.
Devi's "haute Indian" approach has expertly combined authentic Indian flavors with an upscale dining environment. Its "create your own" tasting menu allows you to pick 2-4 dishes of your choosing all for under $55.
A mainstay when it comes to haute Indian cuisine, Tamarind's creative and far-flung menu has been wowing diners for years. Tamarind owner Avatar Walia named his restaurant after the fruit pod of the tropical tamarind tree, which has small seeds and sour pulp often used in Indian cuisine. The restaurant's success and popularity led them to open a second location in Tribeca on Hudson Street.
Head to Delhi Heights, one of many incredible Indian restaurants in Jackson Heights, for a lovely lunch buffet that runs about $10 and includes a nice variety of dishes. A nice introduction to Indian cuisine if you're not already familiar; if you'd prefer to order a la carte, the extensive menu affords you the opportunity as well. The aloo gobi is a particular treat: potatoes and cauliflower tossed with various spices, you won't miss the meat while eating.
Though Baluchi's Masala falls squarely into the category of Indian fast food - witness the steam trays and meals easily purchased by pointing to what looks good and having scoops ladled into a container quickly for you to take to go - there lies within an item not available at just every Indian fast food place. That item? Kati rolls (pictured: chicken kati roll), or what some have likened to an Indian burrito. Hand over $7 and receive flavorful chicken wrapped up in a soft flour Indian bread, along with spicy sauce and lettuce. Wash it all down with a mango lassi and you have a great meal.
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