Shan on El Camino in Sunnyvale
Has anyone been to Shan on El Camino in Sunnyvale? Is it exactly the same as the other locations (Santa Clara).
After having known about Shan for quite a while, stopped by yesterday for the first time with a friend. She exclaimed "haven't had this good Indian food in a long time". I said "hey, what about the Amber buffet we just went to in late Feb?" I think when ordering a la carte, one tends to scrutinize the food more. Anyway, imho I think this is some of the best IndoPak food around. Considering the strip mall location & "divey" reputation, not as inexpensive as I thought it would be. I knew there wouldn't be a buffet but thought perhaps they served "lunch plates"; however, everything was priced separately. Here's what we ordered:
Achaar Murgh (7.49)- chicken cooked in pickling spices was tangy, spicy, rich, flavorful
Chicken tandoori (leg/thigh, 3.99) - a little smoky, flavorful, overall EXCELLENT
Seekh kabablamb (one skewer, 3.50) - flavorful, moist, very good
2 nans (1.00 ea) - wow - light, fluffy, just enough crispness
Basmati rice (1.99)
Raita (2 @ .99 each) - should have just ordered one
Now the cons - wished the chicken items had more meat, friend took her plate back to get a new one as hers was dirty, told myself to buy bottled water or soft drink next time or better yet, get take out:-) Obviously, these cons are not enough to deter the Silicon Valley types from crowding the place by 12:30. Total was $22 but my friend & I felt we could have used a little more food. Of course driving back up the peninsula feeling full & sleepy, we thought, yes that was enough!
Lastly, didn't know about Sunnyvale location (nor about the Santa Clara one) until I retrieved the "To Go " menu. This review is for the Stevens Creek locale. We were on our way to Santana Row; therefore, this was a very minor detour.
Shan in Sunnyvale is OK if you like oily Indian food, but Shalimar a few blocks away seems a bit better to me, especially for the naan. At least there are different dishes between the two places. I had the Aachar murgh which was good but no match the version at Hyderabad House in Palo Alto. I doubt that I'll be going back often given the tastier and less oily choices in the neighborhood.
Pakistani restaurants are known for their tandoori dishes & Shan didn't disappoint. I was pleasantly surprised by the achaar murgh. I haven't had this dish at HH so I cannot comment. However, I did a takeout order of veg. biriyani & goat curry last year at HH & have to say that I don't remember them being any less oily than Shan. Though not bad, I was surprised that the biriyani was so oily considering there was no meat (didn't like the goat dish at all). As for Shalimar, I've only had their chicken biriyani at a friends place and it was good. Just chose Shan over Shalimar yesterday for location (right off 280) & quick service. I am under the impression Shalimar is a full service restaurant (and more expensive?).
Last but not least, benchmark for oily food has to be Naan 'n Curry chain in SF. I think my whole family took zantac before diving into that takeout meal:-) Didn't know it would be sooo oily!