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Mar 14, 2009 07:39 AM

Best Indian food-Downtown Minneapolis

My Dad is going to be visiting for my 40th birthday in a week. He'll be staying at the Graves hotel in downtown Minneapolis, and we both love Indian food. I'd like to find some really good Indian food downtown. Any help appreciated.

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  1. I like Bombay Bistro. Good, classic Indian with a great weekday lunch buffett.

    9 Replies
    1. re: mankymiss

      I second the Bombay Bistro vote. Dancing Ganesha isn't that great, and there aren't a whole
      lot of other choices- India House is also in the area, I've never eaten there .At Bombay Bistro, just don't wait till the later part of the lunch buffet when things can be a bit picked over.

      1. re: mankymiss

        Note that there are two Bombay Bistro restaurants right near each other. The one on Marquette is perfectly adequate. I think the one that is in the Medical Arts Building is much, much better.

        According to a post from Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl ( the one on Marquette focuses on North Indian cuisine,while the Medical Arts restaurant focuses on South Indian cuisine.

        1. re: bob s

          Good to know, I didn't realize there was a difference between the two. I've been looking for good South Indian with dosa, so I'll check out the Medical Arts location, too.

          1. re: bob s

            Very interesting. Ive only ever had BB food at catered functions, but thought that it was quite good, especially for having traveled some distance since it was made. As i was eating northern food ill assume it was fromt he Marquette location, but i guess i cant be sure.

            Are the two locations jointly owned/related in any way?

            1. re: tex.s.toast

              I'll think that they have the same logo, so I'd assume the same ownership but I have no other info about that.

              Mankymiss, they had dosa last week at the Medical Arts location.

            2. re: bob s

              What are some of the characteristic differences between the north and south cuisines?

              1. re: Enso

                So i wanted to answer this question, but then i thought id just find you someone else's answer, but in two words: Its complicated.

                Now that we've covered that hurdle, speaking in gross generalizations, Northern Indian food is what you have probably experienced at typical american indian restaurants. Curries kabobs and naans, etc.

                South indian food tends to be spicier, less reliant on meat, "lighter" (im not actually sure how i would define/defend this description but its a feeling more than an argument) and is characterized by a wide array of non-naan carb options. Idlii and Vada are two distinct types of snack/appetizer things made from steamed or fried rice flours. In the "main" department, south indian food is generally characterized by dosas/dosai *depending on who does the pluralization) which are large thin pancakes made from a batter of fermended grain (myaybe rice also). Dosas are usually filled, or wrapped around some sort of stuffing, made from potatoes, spinach cheese or other vegetables (most south indian restaurants are vegetarian, though not all). In addition to dosas are Uttapams which are thicker pancakes that can be topped with a variety of veg. im doing a terrible job describing them but as an analogy: if dosas are like crispy crispy crepes that have been wrapped around a filling, uttapam are more like thick fluffy buttermilk pancakes that have had veggies (or not) mixed in the batter.

                all of these south indian items - vada, idlii, dosas and uttapams - are served with sambar, which is the typical south indian curry made of lentils and spices, which generally resembles a thin soup and is much less dense than a typical northern curry. coconut and tomato chutneys are also pretty ubiquitous.

                if you think you are the only one who has trouble with what exactly northern vs southern distinctions mean, you're not:

                1. re: tex.s.toast

                  Thanks; this is really helpful. I'd like to try some south Indian food. What restaurants would you recommend, tex...?

              2. re: bob s

                A lot of the foods Dara mentioned are served at the Indian place just off 394 & Park Place. Would others agree they serve a lot of S Indian dishes?

            3. bombay is great! the people who run and manage the place are so kind. the food is delicious.