Clay Oven - Indian in Irvine
- elmomonster Dec 8, 2004 02:32 PM
I remember seeing a post here about Clay Oven in Irvine. A Google search and a CTRL-F did not get any hits.
Can anyone refresh my memory on the general impressions of this place? What are their specialities?
Best north(?) Indian food in Orange County, IMO. They have excellent naan, pakoras, saags, vindaloos (even habanero ones), and chicken biryani (which I hear is difficult to accomplish in restaurant settings). I haven't really had anything that flopped there. The owner is also one of the most personable hosts I've encountered at a restaurant.
Closed Mondays, I believe.
I'm with Tuck on this one. Clay Oven has never failed to delight us with its tandoori dishes. It also has a small, but thoughtfully constructed wine list. The propietor of the restaurant greets everyone who dines there warmly. If I have any qualm about the place it's that it's rare to walk out of there not having paid relatively big bucks for a dinner for two ($40 pp with appetizers and wine, which is expensive when compared to other local Indian restaurants). To this extent, there may be better values out there. Still, my wife and I enjoy Clay Oven a great deal.
Clay Oven has been around for a while. I thought I remember it being very good a long time ago, but I went there maybe a year ago and it was kind of disappointing.
I too prefer the Indian Cook House lunch buffet. A lot more selections. Also, near that Iranian bakery that Gustavo Arellano wrote about in the OC Weekly.
I had dinner there today and was disgusted with the food. Their "family style" dinner portions meant 4 tiny pieces of chicken drowning in soupy tikka masala with no semblance of spice. Their shrimp bhuna masala also had 4 pieces of tiny shrimps also drowning in a tomato sauce- like concoction. It was gross. They did not offer free naan (very different from most Indian restos like India Cook House, Haveli or Chakra).
Elmo, I'm interested to read your review of this restaurant if you've been. There's no way we're going back to Clay Oven. Small portions=overpriced. Not good at all.