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Aug 9, 2006 01:24 AM

Bombay Cafe - very good food, but not a good value

Bombay Cafe
12021 West Pico
Los Angeles

It has been awhile since we ate here, so this past Saturday night -- not being able to recall some of the other good Indian restaurants in the area -- we ended up at Bombay Cafe.

The quality of the food is very good; it is not at all greasy, and the saag paneer was delicious. We also had chicken with a dry spice rub that was really tasty, although a little dry.

Except for some chips and dip (the chips were more like shrimp chips than papadum) everything else needs to be ordered separately, including the chutneys. The portions are small; for example, we ordered raita (yogurt) and mango chutney and each came in a tiny cup -- perhaps 1/4 cup serving. I am used to large bowls of the yogurt and complimentary chutneys and tamarind and mint sauces.

I really liked the food, but I felt as though they had cut to bare minimum on everything. We were over $40 for two of us before tax and gratuity, and we did not order much. The service was ok, but I felt as though they did not care if we were there...

Has anyone else been here? What was your experience? Where else do you like in the general West Los Angeles area?

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  1. This pretty much sums up my feelings about Bombay. The food is great, especially the Samosas & Nan. However, It's just too expensive except for a special night out.

    I hear great things about All India Cafe on Santa Monica but I haven't has a chance to try it yet. Anyone out there?

    5 Replies
    1. re: Cthoover

      I haven't been to the All India Cafe in SM, but I do like the Pasadena branch. Good quality and fresh ingredients at reasonable prices. I like their fresh fish specials and they are one of the few Indian places that serve lamb frankies.

      1. re: Cthoover

        Since my first visit to All India Cafe (the one on Santa Monica), I've stopped going to Bombay Cafe. I've probably been to All India a dozen times now, and it never disappoints. Not only is the food better than at Bombay, but the service is better too (and the prices are lower as well.) Give it a try -- you won't be disappointed.

        1. re: banjoboy

          Thanks! It is at the top of my list!

        2. re: Cthoover

          I grew up in India & All India Cafe is the best Indian food in LA. It is the closest you can get to a home cooked Indian meal. Their foods are freshly prepared and spices used are not contaminated with chemical dyes. The Pasadena branch is excellent.

          An aside, Bombay Cafe is a good place for the ambience. Everything else is extremely average.

          1. re: Ute

            Ambience? It felt a little hippy-ish to me...Our waiter was not present, even though he was doing some waiter-motions...very, very slowly.

            Ute, I take your vote for All India Cafe and am looking forward to trying it soon!

        3. Concur on all points...FYI, India's Grill on San Vicente just south of Beverly Center has GREAT food. Portions are decent for dining in, but HUGE for takeout.

          1. Thanks, All. You have given me some options for next Saturday night!

            And while I have your attention, how is India's Tandoor (or Tandoori) at Wilshire and Granville, upstairs? I saw this recommended on another post.