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Dec 13, 2006 07:46 PM

What is the best Indian restaurant in NYC

What is the best Indian food in NYC - something authentic.

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  1. Ah, there you go asking two questions in one. I think Devi is clearly, far and away the best. I'll leave it to others to tell me it's not authentic.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Wilfrid

      try earthen oven on w72 and columbus. it just opened two months ago. it might not be the best (I'm definitely not an indian food expert) but the food is very, very good AND they are nice. i just wish it were less expensive as i live right there and would like to go very often. check out the review on

      i haven't tried devi yet but i found dawat, sitar and mitali (there are two, i think . the good one is at E 6th (bet 1st and 2nd) to be really great. for some strange reason, i also like royal kabab on w103 and brdwy. it's one of the better ones near columbia. i'm curious to see what the others say but it doesn't come close to the others.

      1. re: nativeNYer

        I like Earthen Oven, but oddly, my best experience was with takeout. I ordered a meat tandoori dish--we were having a dinner with 5 or 6 people, a black dal, a vegetable dish, and rice and breads, and the total was about $60. It was a lot of food for that price, and it was good. when we ate in it wasn't so great.

        A related restaurant is Indus Valley, up at Broadway and 100th. Same owners. Indus Valley was good when we ate there, but takeout was a complete bust--the birianis were hot (who makes really, really spicy vegetable biriani?) and mushy, a no-no for sub-Continental rice. It tasted like a Mexican refried dish.

        1. re: nativeNYer

          I haven't been to Dawat in years. I believe Madhur Jeffrey famed cookbook author was the owner and/or chef.

          The last Indian food I ate was at Salaam Bombay and before that a place my friend liked on 6th in the EV, the just okay place on Fulton Street downtown, two restaurants near my old office on 45th/6th Avenue and Tabla when it first opened ages ago. I need to try some of these places.

        2. re: Wilfrid

          Based on my one solitary experience at Devi, I can't belive you would call it "far and away the best". I'm from SF and my and wife and I had the tasting menu at Devi. I though it was a total sham. About $65/person with dishes like a single tandoori prawn with fried okra, a minuscule portion of bhel puri, a small piece of tandoori lamb with 1 piece of gobi manchurian (which could've been good if I had enough to actually gauge). I'm used to small portions on tasting menus at high end restaurants, but usually the food is uniquely prepared and uses higher end ingredients. This was essentially basic Indian food broken up into small courses. The breads served with the courses were also very standard.

          The space is nice, much better than your average Indian restaurant, probably because the owner and co-chef was originally in the fashion industry before he started cooking. His restaurant in Delhi is beautifully modern and really stands out in delhi, but I refused to go after my disappointing trip to devi.

          The bread pudding was really good, maybe the best dessert I've ever had at an Indian restaurant.

          Is the trick, perhaps, to not do the tasting menu and order a la carte? And if so, which dishes are the spectacular?

          Next time in NYC we will definetly hit up Tabla, Floyd Cardoz helped create a menu for a restaurant out here near SF and it is truly unique.

        3. Tamarind is pretty close to the top for high end Indian. For the most authentic, you might want to look on the Outer Borough boards

          1. I have to agree with Devi. I had a virtually transcendental meal there the last time. Tamarind is quite good, but haven't had the *wow* thing there.

            Best one on 6th street is Banjara, but it doesn't compare to the two mentioned above. On ambience alone it rates lower.

            GL with your search....

            1. I really like Devi and also Brick Lane Curry House. I always enjoyed Banjara too, but I haven't been in a very long time. I didn't really care for Tamarind.

              1. i personally like saravannas though its all veg and its only south indian. Thali plates, dosa, idly, chole batura are all really good...when i lived in singapore i used to eat at a place called komala vilas which was very similar that was all tamil people who worked in singapore (though komala was better than saravannas and also way more rundown and crappy looking), maybe i like it so much b/c it reminds me of that plce

                2 Replies
                1. re: Lau

                  Saravannas is good for South Indian, as is Chennai Garden around the corner. You won't miss the meat at all, I think. (Even avowed carnivores like it.) Sukhadia's is my favorite place to go for Indian sweets and a cheap lunch (usually chaat for me, but their buffet is shockingly good for a buffet).

                  If you like tandoori style food, Earthen Oven is, as NativeNYer pointed out, good. I personally find it a bit too meat heavy and more unidimensionally flavored than good South Indian.

                  1. re: Lau

                    Funny, I have never been to Chennai Gardens although I was addicted to a place close by called Tiffin Wallah that is also indian vegetarian. I went there about once a week for 2 years. Food amazing and very original...not the stuff you get everwhere else, although the sauces, raita, coriander chutney, etc. were lacking. Then about a month ago I went one day and the food was very so-so, bland and not unusual. So, I chalked it up to a bad day. Sadly to say I have been back twice since and had the same experience. So, I will start checking some of these other places out.

                    Tiffin Wallah
                    127 E 28th St, New York, NY 10016

                    Chennai Garden
                    129 E 27th St, New York, NY 10016