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Any good Indian buffets downtownish?

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Hey,

Just wondering if there are any good Indian buffets available in the downtown area? I've read the other boards and heard great things about several Indian restaurants but the friends that I am eating with can really eat a lot so trying to find a place that will satisfy both our taste buds and stomachs. Any help would be great! Thanks in advance.

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  1. Short answer: no, there are no good Indian buffets downtown (that I know of - please someone chime in if there actually are any).

    Long answer: if someone put a gun to my head and *made* me eat at an Indian buffet downtown, I'd probably try Bombay Palace. It used to be "OK" but I haven't been there in years - it might have gone downhill since then. Avoid Buffet Maharajah.

    1. Le Taj has a decent lunch buffet that is as good as it gets in this town for indian buffets.

      1. well i completely agree with the posts here. When i came to montreal 5 months back, 1st day i went to maharaja. I was 1 of the worst Indian food had ever. Bombay palace better than Maharja still no good.

        1. There is no such thing as a good Indian buffet.

          1. how much sag paneer can one eat in a sitting? Lol

            Maharaja ... went there years ago. Remember the bloated, msg wretchedness I was feeling before I waddled out of there.

            1 Reply
            1. re: rictitious

              I once ate an entire buffet insert of saag aloo.
              (I was full. I like saag aloo.)

            2. If you're referring to downtown Montreal, there's a passable (and varied) buffet called Buffet Maharajah, not far from the Bell Center, where the Habs play hockey. It doesn't have "great" food, but it all depends on the sophistication of your palate!! Some people like it, some don't. I would recommend going down to Montreal's Chinatown. There's a varied selection of restaurants there and some real hidden gems. You can also try one of the best Chinese restaurants in Montreal, called Kam Shing on Victoria.

              2 Replies
              1. re: giaceats

                hmm I assume you are not the typical chowhound here. Most of the stuff I have read on this board about Maharaja was negatively overwhelming.

                I've actually never been there though and I guess I should give it a try. I mean there aren't exactly any better all-you-can-eat in Montreal anyways aside from like the 25$ sushi places like Kanda or Odaki. I really feel the urge to stuff myself like crazy.

                1. re: Ghostquatre

                  I guess people's ideas of what constitutes good food varies for the most part. And some people have very sophisticated palates. If you want good food at a decent price, I can assure you of one excellent restaurant in Montreal's Chinatown that has had rave reviews for several years. I've eaten there many times, and have recommended it to many people ...... always with positive feedback ......... La Maison Kam Fung. Might I recommend their dim sum, the best in Montreal!! It's not your "typical" Canadianized Chinese retaurant, but has some real hidden treasures on the menu.

              2. Avoid the ones downtown including Le Taj and Maharajah. It's far cheaper to go to one of the good thali places and order a thali and a dosa. If that doesn't fill you up then I am impressed indeed =D Not downtown, mind you, but some things are worth the trip =D

                1. Finally been to Maharaja today for lunch and I was to say even for a guy with standards as low as mine, I'm very disappointed. Like I wouldn't even go there to stuff myself like crazy when I'm really hungry or when I just wanna stuff myself like crazy.

                  Every dish was incredibly under spiced and bland... Food wasn't kept at high enough temperature for my tastes, and there was few items to choose from. My favourite item was the lentil curry, and there's just no way I'm gonna pay 13 bucks just for rice and lentil, unless if I really wanted to challenge myself and stuff myself till i start getting some economies of scale.

                  Guess it's back to the Lasalle Vichy for me

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Ghostquatre

                    Aside from the unanimous thumbs-down on the food, dishes that should be served piping hot being served in the kinda hot-to-lukewarm range is another big reason to avoid this place. (wow, sorry, mother of all run-ons)
                    Not for matters of taste, but safety. Lukewarm food left out for long periods is a breeding ground for all sorts of air-borne nasties (and possibly food-borne if it was never cooked hot enough to begin with). A huge red flag.

                  2. Try the Taj Downtown
                    or any place in Park Extension

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: roiberto

                      In Park-Ex? Are there ANY Indian buffets in Park-Ex?

                    2. i had buffet at taj once and it wasn't good at all. the tandoori chicken was too dry and the other items were not good enough to remember.
                      places i would go for buffet that are cheaper and better
                      le rajput on prince arthur and st laurent-10 bucks, selection of 4 different main entrees, not too much variance, but the quality is great.
                      mumbai palace on lincoln-10% off if you're a student, $10, more selection than le rajput and great home made flavor.

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: sharkbait88

                        Rajput - to clarify it's a block off St-Laurent, at Prince and St-Dominique.
                        Been meaning to try it, nice to hear good things. Alot closer to me than Thali or places on Jean-Talon.

                        1. re: Shattered

                          check it out (rajput)...went the other day and it was great
                          although le taj is the best indian beffet for what i consider 'downtown' ...prince arthur is plateau and ghetto

                        2. re: sharkbait88

                          I agree. The Taj is the ONLY buffet that I have ever been to where not a single person from my group went for seconds of anything. Also , it was a big group.

                          1. re: The Chemist

                            But in comparison to other downtown indian buffets (maharaja) it is still the best ..even if it isnt great...

                            1. re: kpaxonite

                              Lord knows why (my masochistic streak?) I decided to subject my girlfriend to Maharaja. She's new to Indian food and I figured it would give her the chance to sample.

                              Let me state this as clearly as possible: The entire selection was nothing but lukewarm slop. Desert was either watered-down jello cubes, or bananas floating in glucose. How this place manages to stay open year after peptic year, particularly given how scathing the reviews of it are (in a city known for its dining) is utterly beyond me.

                              1. re: rictitious

                                That is too bad! The only indian buffet that i found palatable was Sahib in the West Island. Their butter chicken and deserts are great, so is the lamb and they sometimes have crispy okra. The buffet layout is odd though, and not as big as Maharaja, but then again, who needs that much?

                                Sahib
                                225, boul. Hymus corner of St-Jean

                                1. re: SourberryLily

                                  Sahib is the best indian buffet I've tried in town. Been back numerous times.

                                  -----
                                  Restaurant Sahib
                                  225 Blvd Hymus, Pointe-Claire, QC H9R1G4, CA

                        3. Hi Jonny,

                          All I can tell you (like others have) is to NOT got to Buffet Maharaja or Bombay Palace. Maharaja's food is not great, the place is not clean, and even though it is sitting in the buffet area, the meat is cold? --Bombay palace, last time I went there, had FLIES flying around and landing in every dish. Bathrooms at boths locations were horribly unkept.

                          Just please don't go there lol.... I like indian food myself. I think Etoile des Indes on Ste-Catherine is good and reasonably priced (however not buffet). I have heard Le Taj was good, but I have never been myself.

                          I am really an indian fan but mostly just stick with Etoile des Indes. Other places I have tried were Thali and Devi--don't go to those places either.

                          I'd say between Le Taj and Etoile des Indes you should be good, but since you are looking for Buffet, the Taj might be more what you are looking for.

                          13 Replies
                          1. re: socialhvn

                            What's wrong with Devi and Thali?

                            1. re: hungryann

                              I agree.. Thali is not Pushap (on Pare ) quality but a great second and Devi is also quite good. Not in the same category as the two other cattle washes mentioned. Taj is uneven but depending on the day if its not too busy it's quite good as well.

                              1. re: hungryann

                                Thali tastes to me like what I would expect "Indian Day" at a hospital cafeteria would taste. Freezer burnt samosas, gristly meat, unauthentic tasting sauces, stale and cold gulab jamun, overall everything is bland and all you taste is the same 'spiciness'.

                                I went to Devi for lunch about a year ago. It wasn't horrible, but I wouldn't recommend it either. The decor is cute. It was pretty empty when I went though. I remember the soup being really watered down and not tasting like anything. Also the lunch special was either (from my memory) lamb chicken or vegetarian, and wanted the lamb and the waitress actually told me it wasn't that great and she recommended the chicken. If that was the case, I thanked her for telling me at least, but wasn't too impressed. Other than the soup which was pathetic, I'd say the meal was ok but I've had better. I wouldn't bother going back.

                                1. re: socialhvn

                                  Agreed. Also, the temperature is never quite right and the sauces seem watered down to make them go 'further'. It was far better when it first opened but it's gone steadily downhill. After trying places like Shahi Palace, Moti Mahal. Bombay Mahal, India curry house, Pushap... etc. there is just no way this place can satisfy.

                                  -----
                                  Shahi Palace Restaurant
                                  4773 Boul Des Sources, Pierrefonds, QC H8Y3C6, CA

                                  Pushap
                                  1661 Av Dollard, Lasalle, QC H8N1T7, CA

                                  1. re: socialhvn

                                    Portions and quality have both slowly watered down, and prices have crept up. Eg. Naan used to be included, now extra $1 or $1.50. Too bad, I loved it for the first year or so, and it filled a major gap when it opened. Really hard to find tasty, cheap Indian downtown.

                                    1. re: Shattered

                                      I really hate when a place opens strong and then goes downhill like this. It's financial suicide for the owners. I know it's family run and I want to go there and just TELL them why business is down. I know it's a jerk move but it might really help them. Also, then we might still have decent Indian downtown.

                                      1. re: The Chemist

                                        are you talking about Thali here?

                                        1. re: unlaced

                                          Yup.

                                          1. re: The Chemist

                                            I don't think their business is down personally - we went by on a recent weekday night and all the tables were taken! We went to Picks instead.

                                            I also haven't noticed a decline in the curries although I agree, from day one, they were slightly inconsistent in serving size and number of pieces of meat that they doled out. I should note that on recent visits we have not been getting the thali plates, but instead a full serve of the curries we want (which seem to come from the back, and are not served from the steam table)

                                            1. re: unlaced

                                              Oops, I misread & misremembered the new menu when I said they now charge extra for what came included (the part that lists different prices for a main with rice or naan).
                                              http://thalimontreal.com/en/menu

                                              Prices for thali plates are up $1. No biggie. Still, with the food being blander the last couple times I went, I'll still go since the Indian options downtown suck, but not out of my way like before.

                                              1. re: unlaced

                                                I just assumed that business would be down as prices are up and the quality (from the tray at least) is noticeably down. Maybe people like worse food for more money. It WOULD explain the perceived value of food in some other cities. =D

                                                There is always the chicken tikka sandwich across the street but truthfully, that seems unreliable these days.

                                                1. re: The Chemist

                                                  " Maybe people like worse food for more money. It WOULD explain the perceived value of food in some other cities."
                                                  To tell you the truth, I don't think Montreal is that great of a food city

                                                  Btw does anybody know if the quality of the naan has diminished? I remembered it was one of the best I have had, being very fluffy on the inside and flavourful

                                        2. re: Shattered

                                          > Naan used to be included, now extra $1 or $1.50.

                                          Really? When did that start? I was just there about 2 weeks ago and a fresh piece of nan was included with the thali platter.

                                          Edit: never mind - just read down rest of thread and saw that it was a case of mis-remembering.

                                  2. The only edible - actually quite good - Indian buffet I know of is Tandoori Palace in Laval on Cartier. $9.99 Lunch and the ingredients are fresh and flavourful as far as buffets go.