Indian buffet reccommendations?
I'm a complete novice when it comes to Indian food, and given my occupation, that is a terrible thing. I SHOULD be astute in every cuisine. Is there a good buffet on a SATURDAY in Phoenix area that I can try which has a good assortment of dishes. I just want to get the basic jist of things, but at least at a reputable place.
I'll give you an idea of what I know. I by default send every guest with an indian request to Jewel of the Crown. Ideally would like to try that but I cannot afford it, so a good inexpensive (<$15) buffet would at least give me an idea of what Indian cuisine exactly is.
any help is great. Thanks in advance!!
P.S. any part of the city is OK but the closer to the city the better!
I don't think I've come across any Indian buffet more than $15 in cost -- except maybe once in Manhattan. Here, the price seems to be around $10.
The nearest Indian restaurant to you is Flavors of India on 16th St. It's his-or-miss in terms of food and service quality, but it has the basics and the crowd-pleasers. Another good choice is Indian Delhi Palace on McDowell Road and 50th St.
For something a little different, try the buffet at Udupi on Scottsdale Rd. just south of the Tempe / Scottsdale border. Udupi serves vegetarian southern Indian food, which is distinct from the northern fare served at places such as Jewel and Flavors. I prefer southern Indian food; others prefer northern. The difference is as substantial as the difference between northern and southern Italian food. Regardless of where your preferences end up, a trip to Udupi will be a good way to broaden your Indian food knowledge.
1636 N Scottsdale Rd, Tempe, AZ 85281
Jewel of the Crown
7373 E Scottsdale Mall Ste 1, Scottsdale, AZ 85251
Kohinoor Cuisine of India
1043 E Lemon St, Tempe, AZ 85281
Flavors of India
4523 N 16th St, Phoenix, AZ 85016
Indian Delhi Palace
5104 E McDowell Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85008
Kohinoor on 1043 E Lemon St. in Tempe has a buffet on Saturday starting at 11:30 and it's quite good. This is a classic hole-in-the-wall joint, not upscale like Jewel of the Crown but the food is authentic I'm told by Indian friends. They have a bakery and the goodies are on display on the way to the cash register. I can't remember the exact price for the buffet but it's closer to $7 - $8 than $15. It's near Rural and Apache alongside the new train tracks.
re: Doug in Mesa
I've dined at Kohinoor two times, and while both times I VERY MUCH enjoyed the Kachari Cholay (off of the chaat menu), I will not dine there again due to a topic that the chowhound board has counseled me on the past. I do not recommend the paneer dishes (tried two dishes and did not like any), nor the lamb curry (meat is too tough). Really, I LOVE the kachori cholay <spinach-stuffed patty made of chana besan flour that is deep-fried (strike one, two, and three), topped with stewed chickpeas, onions, and garlic, then garnished with mint chutney and tamarind sauce,> but I'd rather not dine there again, and I wouldn't send my friends and relatives there, either.
Instead, I FULLY endorse Udupi, Indian Delhi Palace, Tandoori Times, and Jewel of the Crown. While I liked the palak paneer and naan, as well as the Tandoori dinner, at Royal Taj (in Tempe), I found it hard to commnunicate my food concerns with the older couple (owners?) at the venue. I'd asked for no sugar in the wonderful chai tea, and sure enough, the tea was sweetened (it really was deliciously sweetened, but I'd wanted to lessen my sugar intake as I was already going to have a lot of sugar munching on the special coconut naan).