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New Indian restaurant in Dallas

The name is Bukhara Grille (http://www.bukharagrille.com/). It's specialty is Indian food from the northwest region. We happened to be in the area and accidentally stumbled upon it and decided to go in for dinner.

To begin with - the decor is very much a mix of rustic Indian touches mixed with some contemprary art and is definitely much better that most Indian places. The service is extremely attentive and prompt - again better than any Indian place I have seen.

On to the food now : We decided to go with the owner's (who incidentally is also the cook) recommendation and ordered Mirch Murgh Masala (chicken in a spicy gravy), Dal Bhukara (black lentils in a creamy gravy) and Ustad Ki Dum Biryani (lamb biryani). Every dish was EXCEPTIONAL, especially the biryani which was cooked in a pot which was completely sealed with naan dough and opened at our table. The aroma was exquisite!!
We ordered one dessert but the owner very graciously also offered us their house specialty - sort of an Indian bread putting steeped in saffron flavor and garnished with nuts...again fantastic. Oh yes...their other house specialty not to be missed is anything from the Tandoor (kebabs) but we were too stuffed to try any this time.

In talking to the owner, the place just opened a couple weeks ago and the word is still getting out. The owner himself was extremely friendly, knowledgeable and helpful. They still have to get their Guidelive review but I personally have no hesitation recommending them as the #1 Indian restaurant in DFW. If you are in the Richardson/Plano area I would definitely recommend checking out the place.

Happy chow-ing :)

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  1. Thanks for the post nitlsu! I have been intrigued by this restaurant since Bill Addison's post on the DMN's eats blog. He also sings the praises of the restaurant's Ustad Kim Dum Biryani. Here is the link to the DMN's eats blog which also has a link to its menu:

    http://eats.beloblog.com/archives/200...

    3 Replies
    1. re: Bhutani

      We went to Bukhara for lunch today and were shocked to find that's where Ali Baba Express used to be! We didn't know it closed!! The decor is pretty much the same as it used to be.

      Anyway, Bukhara's food was very good. I think their chicken tikka masala is the best in town (we tried about 15 Indian restaurants in DFW over the last 2 yrs). Also, their paneer is excellent (I never liked paneer before and this is the best paneer I've ever had). It has a Chinese twist and you can taste soy sauce. Their mushroom and goat curries were also very good. Their rice pudding is pretty good, too (though Mayuri's is slightly better). Their Tandori chicken was good, but not as good as Mayuri's or Pasand's.

      The owner said the chef or his partner moved from the Bay area and he makes lamb korma just like in CA (as I told him we used to go to this excellent Indian restaurant in CA, which served velvet-like superb lamb korma). So we have to go back for dinner and try their lamb korma.

      I hope this restaurant will stay in business. That location doesn't get much dinner traffic. Ali Baba Express was always packed during lunch (they weren't open for dinner), but they closed only after a year or less.

      1. re: kuidaore

        Ali Baba did close, but not due to lack of business - they are in the process of relocating to a larger space in a free standing building just on the other side of Central, near Cafe Brazil. Ironicaly a building that once occupied an Indian restaurant. They should be open in another 3-4 weeks and will serve both lunch 7 dinner.

        1. re: mfindfw

          Great news! It'll be a better location for dinner traffic. Thanks.

    2. Just wanted to give this place another 'thumbs up'. I went last week with friends and the food was wonderful. The nafeez palak was probably the best I've had, with a great flavor and texture. The lamb korma was creamy, sweet and very good. The breads were hot, light, and fluffy.

      The only slight let down was the rasmalai. Which, while having a good flavor, was quite dry. Their version was not my favorite rendition of this dessert.

      We are already planning a trip back for a second visit. I, too, was a bit worried by the low traffic the night we went. We were the only clients for nearly the first half of our meal. By the time we left, there were a few Indian families as well, but most, if not all, were just having the buffet. I hope their dinner business will pick up and their kitchen does not suffer due to client concentration on the buffet. We found this to be one of the best Indian restaurants we've tried in Dallas and look forward to it being around for the long term.

      6 Replies
      1. re: chipsandsalsa

        Went for Dinner this week and I should say, I haven't had such Delicious and Authentic flavour at any of the Indian Restaurants here in Dallas. The Food is extremely good. The Biryani's are cooked in a very traditional style. All the ingredients, rice and meat are put in a wok, sealed with Naan Dough and placed into an oven. The sealing is done to ensure the moisture and the flavour are retained inside the wok.

        They are having a Food Festival this weekend with very typical Hyderabadi items. You can check out the details at www.bukharagrille.com. Just to add, the Owner is an ex-chef from one of the best restaurants in Delhi (Bukhara at ITC Maurya Sheraton). I am going back this weekend to enjoy to the food fest.

        1. re: MastPetu

          Thanks for the tip. Some of us hounds went there for the festival tonight, which was a buffet. I liked one of the lamb dishes very much.

          People started coming in after 7p and by the time we left about 8pm, the restaurant was full. Quite a few were ordering from the menu, though.

          1. re: kuidaore

            do you remember what the lamb dish was, or what type?

            1. re: luniz

              I think it was Keema (Keema Matar?), but I'm not positive. It was a hyderabadi(=lots of lamb) night so I don't know if those dishes are served on a regular basis.

              1. re: kuidaore

                I have yet to eat there so I don't know what lamb preparation is being discussed. But, as an FYI, keema refers to ground lamb. You often find keema stuffed inside naan or a samosa.

                1. re: Bhutani

                  I think the lamb dish I was talking about is most probably Haleem.

                  http://www.guidelive.com/portal/page?...

      2. I want to endorse everything nitslu has said. This is possibly a new "best Indian in DFW" restaurant. The co-owner, Vijay, is just as helpful to new diners as nitlsu describes.

        1. Excellent recommendation. Have eaten there twice, both times at lunch & prior to guide live review. Lunch is a buffet. Food was much better fresher than any other Indian buffet i've been to, with much more interesting selections. Service was very warm & friendly. Unfortunately didn't have opportunity to try the Biryani (can't order from menu at lunch) but will have to try at dinner sometime. I suspect the guide live review will have a very positive impact on their business. Now my favorite Indian restaurant in the area.

          18 Replies
          1. re: mfindfw

            I wish I could share everyone else's enthusiasm as I was looking forward to trying this place based on quickly reviewing the menu. I went a week ago for the lunch buffet and was underwhelmed. I realize that it may it difficult to properly judge a restaurant on a buffet but there was nothing that I tasted at the buffet that had me craving for more. Everything was awash in fairly similar tasting gravies (which to me is a huge turnoff for most Indian lunch buffets). The rogan josh was a unique item but the meat was overcooked and thus on the dry side. I did enjoy one of the cauliflower dishes which is different than the usual gobi masala (or gobi aloo) that you typically find.

            I will probably give this restaurant another try at dinner at some point. I just hope that they will focus on serving proper Indian dishes and drop the Indo-Chinese portion of the menu.

            1. re: Bhutani

              I'm going to tell the owner to keep the Indo-Chinese paneer!!!

              1. re: Bhutani

                I, too, have been very excited to try this place after reading the glowing reviews on this site. We went for dinner on Saturday night and to my disappointment, we were told there was a buffet. There were a couple of specific dishes I had wanted to try, so I was disappointed that I wouldn't be able to. Anyway, on to the buffet. None of the food was labeled, which makes eating difficult for someone like me, who eates chicken and fish, but no other types of meat.

                The naan was too buttery - almost soggy. The two vegetable dishes and one chicken dish weren't bad, but they didn't wow me. Like Bhutani said, the sauces were too similar and halfway throgh my plate, I was bored. My boyfriend, who tried a few other things, wasn't impressed either. He had been there for a buffet lunch last week and said the selection was bigger. My general feeling is that if I pay $13 or so for a Saturday night buffet, it needs to be a bit bigger than a cheaper weekday lunch buffet.

                There are still several things I'd like to try at Bukhara, but it appears, on their website, that they offer the buffet on Friday and Saturday nights, leaving me no opportunity to do so.

                1. re: sass

                  You can eat the buffet and/or order from the menu. That's precisely what I did just last Friday night. I didn't find the sauces too similar, although the selections had distinct regionalism. Even the Buddhist vegetarian in our group remarked about the variety of tastes. Also, the buffet dishes were mostly labeled, albeit not often in English. But that is perhaps fitting, considering that, looking around the packed dining room, more tables were inhabited by Indo/Pak families/groups than not. And Vijay will help you with the food if you ask.

                  1. re: guttural

                    I don't understand how a Buddist vegetarian commenting on the variety of tastes at the restaurant strengthens your argument, guttural. As I said, a buffet is an unfair means of judging the quality of a restaurant. For that reason, I will probably revisit Bukhara. While they may offer the choice of ordering off the menu, it isn't obvious to first-time diners. If they do offer the choice of ordering off the menu, I wish they would inform people when they arrive instead of shuttling customers through the buffet line.

                    Both of my parents are originally from India and dined with me at the lunch buffet. In reviewing the on-line menu, they both were reluctant to even try the restaurant as they were put off by the restaurant's offering both classic Indian dishes and the Indo-Chinese menu. It is never a good sign, IMO, for a restaurant to serve divergent cuisines. Stick with one and do it well instead of doing two or more in a mediocre fashion. They both were more vocal ithan I in their disappointment with the buffet.

                    1. re: Bhutani

                      Buddhist = he has been vegetarian for a long time is well familiar with the difficulties of finding enough variety in restaurants. My recalling his comments were to counter other comments that sauces were too similar.

                      You and sass made comments about the sauces; I made a dissenting one. I was neither defending the restaurant nor attacking sass.

                      We were offered menus when we sat down, and the availability of the dinner buffet was explained. No idea why sass got such a weird answer.

                      Hopefully this reply helps you to understand my comments.

                      1. re: guttural

                        Thanks for the clarification. I had inferred from your vegetarian Buddist comment that your friend had some particular knowledge about Indian food or more particularly the food served at Bukhara. It would be hard to make the leap that being Buddhist implies that he/she has been vegetarian for a long time as my wife's family is Buddhist and they all have never been vegetarian. For vegetarian offerings though, there are a wealth of other places to get a broader selection of vegetarian items (including Madras Pavilion, Cosmic Cafe, Kalachandji's as well as the Buddhist temple).

                    2. re: guttural

                      Well for some reason, I was told I could not order from the menu on Saturday night. I asked.

                      If I return, I'll make sure to call first and clarify.

                      1. re: sass

                        I saw people ordering from the menu on Sat a couple of weeks ago.

                    3. re: sass

                      Unless they've changed their policy, you can certainly order from the menu even if they have the buffet on offer. They had the buffet up when we visited Saturday night a few weeks ago. They were very happy to bring us a menu when we asked. Though a large majority of people in the dining room were eating from the buffet, there were several tables, besides us, that had obviously ordered from the menu.

                      1. re: chipsandsalsa

                        when I visited on a Saturday lunch, they did not immediately offer menus, but on request they were happy to oblige.

                        I thought the buffet looked boring, but my mother enjoyed the food and said it tasted more varied that it looked. I really loved the spinach appetizer with cumin and other spices. I thought the tikki masala was okay but a little sour tasting and will try something else next time.

                    4. re: Bhutani

                      We went back for dinner and ordered from the menu. We liked their buffet, both lunch and Hyderabad dinner, so we had high expectations for their regular dishes. However, they didn't measure up.

                      We liked GOSHT KUNDAN KALIYA and KOFTA SHAHZADI a lot, but our favorite lamb korma (or KORMA SHAHJEHANI) was subpar. Chicken Tikka Masala was too salty and the buffet version was better.

                      We'll still go back, but probably for the buffet.

                      1. re: kuidaore

                        I enjoyed the gosht kundan kaliya a lot too. Some at the table said they thought the lamb quality in general was a little poor. I agree. It was still a little tough and didn't have a strongly pronounced lamb flavor. Kuidaore, what was the special chicken dish we ordered? I found it to be especially good, and thought the chicken was cooked well.

                        1. re: kindofabigdeal

                          Yea I thought the lamb was overcooked and mediocre at best, chicken tikka masala definitely salty, liked the eggplant and *really* liked the chettinad chicken, I'd go back for that. The bread pudding dessert was really tasty too. Some of the naan was a little undercooked, wasn't it?

                          1. re: luniz

                            luniz, I don't think we got the eggplant dish. Since the owner recommended BAGARA BAINGAN (Baby eggplants simmered in tamarind flavored white sesame & coconut gravy) for a vegetarian dish, we thought we switched to it, but I think we ended up with KOFTA SHAHZADI (paneer with dry fruits & nuts, then simmered in a rich Awadhi gravy) as what I ate was definitely not eggplants. I like it a lot and would order it again. I think I really like their paneers.

                            http://www.bukharagrille.com/Menu.html

                            1. re: kuidaore

                              yea that makes sense, I do remember cutting into it and seeing stuff. vaguely. I was pretty hungry at that point :)

                            2. re: luniz

                              Naan confuses me. It seems different everywhere. I had always thought it was a yeast risen bread, but the last three times I've had it I've tasted baking powder. Last night's had a little bit of that flavor to me. Sometimes it's thick, sometimes it's thinner, sometimes slathered in butter, sometimes oil or sometimes dry. I didn't notice bukhara's to be undercooked though.

                            3. re: kindofabigdeal

                              kindofbigdeal, it was Chettinad Chicken, highly recommended by Wurzel and his wife. It's not on the menu.

                              And obviously, you guys enjoyed the bread pudding.

                              I'm glad you enjoyed the dinner, since we coerced you to stay ;-)

                      2. Yeah, it is really good, a little expensive though.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: Rajiv

                          They seem to be having a different kind of Food Festival almost every weekend. Anyone eaten there recently, please post your views. I get some real good comments and a few real Bad ones from my friends.

                          1. re: MastPetu

                            We enjoy their lunch buffet. There are always 2-3 dishes we really like. When we were there last month, the restaurant was less than half full between 12-1pm so we are worried that they may not stay in business. When Ali Baba was there, it was always packed at lunchtime.