Very good family type Indian cafe in Arlington.
I just finished, or rather, couldn't finish all of a delicious meal I picked up at Saran an hour ago. I dipped deep into their menu for some old favorites from my traveling days and they were spot on! I got the masala rawa dosai, which I think is rava dosa most other places. It is a pancake made from wheat and lentils, potatoes and onions, served with a rich vegetable stew, sambar. And since I like it hot, the chef threw in some of the small green chilis to give it just a touch of fire. It came with a coconut chutney that was pretty good, and a sweet almost honey like dip, as well. I also ordered Aloo Bonda, which is a golden dumpling with lentils, onions and potatoes. There was a fresh green dipping sauce as well, which was pretty good. The roti was hot, right out of the oven, and it was nearly as good as the best I've had at Ravi Kabob, which has been my favorite Pakistani place in the Arlington area. I know that Pakistani and Indian aren't the same, but I kind of lump them in the 'different but similar' camp.
Saran was doing a decent business, 4 tables occupied, and a steady stream of carryout customers.
The service was friendly, the dosa was prepared well, they hit my request for heat right on, serving size was generous, the bonda was excellent & the achar was outstanding and it was all for just $12.50. All in all, a restaurant I will be grabbing takeout from much more often!
"And since I like it hot, the chef threw in some of the small green chilis to give it just a touch of fire."
It's so true that you have to ask for the food spicy in an Indian restaurant. It makes all the difference. Sometimes I forget and I'm almost always disappointed.
I want to second the recommendation of Saran. I'm still craving the pakoras I had there 2 days ago for the Sunday buffet. My friend and I originally went to Sangam, recommended here, but the buffet looked like it was days old. Saag paneer with NO paneer in it, that kind of thing. Saran's buffet looked and tasted fresh. Can't wait to order off the menu.
1211 N Glebe Rd Ste 2, Arlington, VA 22201