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Nov 24, 2009 10:58 AM

Kathmandu restaurant: best tandoori chicken in Toronto?

I was downtown today and I thought I'd revisit an old haunt of mine: Kathmandu Restaurant. I used to eat there with frequency when I worked closer to downtown Toronto, but it had been a few years since I'd been there for their lunch buffet.

Their lunch buffet is not abundant in selection, but it makes up for it with flavour. I used to work in Rexdale and I live near Little India, and I always found Kathmandu to have the tastiest lunch buffet in Toronto. My two standouts are the butter chicken and tandoori chicken.

Butter chicken, in my opinion, is the everyday-person's Indian food staple. Pleases everybody, is not too much of a culturally-shocking food to eat, can't make it poorly. Kathmandu exceeds one's expectations and does a great job with their chicken. very tasty.

but its their tandoori chicken that's the standout dish. Kathmandu has a tandoor oven in their kitchen, and you can really taste the oven's flavours on this chicken dish. it has an excellent amount of smokey flavour that blends in well with the seasoning and the yoghurt marinade used. the outer chicken layer still retains a coating or batter of sort from the marinade, adding to the moistness of the chicken.

I've had a lot of tandoori chicken in Toronto, and, in my opinion, Kathmadu is still the best. (with Dhaba possibly being #2). anyone else have a favourite place or want to concur?

p.s. - Kathmandu doesn't drown their food in ghee. you won't leave there feeling heavy with ghee.

Kathmandu Kathmandu
517 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M4Y1Y3, CA

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  1. I also love Kathmandu, it's the first Indian restaurant we ate in upon moving here. They also make great chicken vindaloo and eggplant curry.

    My favourite tandoori chicken is at Jaipur Grill on Yonge. They use very high quality chicken, I think it's free range. Also, they leave the skin on which results in a gloriously moist bird. It's also well-spiced with a judicious amount of fresh lime juice, which makes it interesting.

    1. We happened upon Kathmandu - and were so pleasantly surprised. The flavours, the quality - they're there at a really nice price.

      1. I'll add my kudos to the lunch buffet here and I, on principle, loathe buffets. I ended up having the one there because it was the path of least resistance--I was having lunch with someone who I wanted to talk to about a bunch of topics and while the waiter gladly brought us the menu to order from, we couldn't seem to get our act together. So we decided to just get the buffet and be done with it.

        The food, with the exception of (sorry to say) the tandoori chicken, was fresh, hot and delicious. The butter chicken was perfect and I rarely use that term. There were a number of salads and nice condiments to go with the meal and for the price, it was a good deal.

        I can't say I'll go back for the lunch again but I will definitely go back for dinner.

        1 Reply
        1. re: gooditsall

          from past experience, if you see that the chicken doesn't look up to your standards (i.e. its been quiet and the chicken looks like its been sitting) they will bring out fresh stuff within 10+ minutes.

          i once joked that they don't have samosas at their buffet (even though i like their papadam, which i usually don't at other restaurants), and they brought out samosas just for me.

        2. Must try the tandoori chicken. We often go for the Lamb Sali bothi and the butter chicken. Been going there for years since my wife used to work in the area. We also live near little India, but make the trip over to Yonge street too.

          1 Reply
          1. re: currycue

            I will have to check both Kathmandu and Jaipur as soon as I get over this lousy flu. I haven't had good tandoori (or a good Indian buffet) for too long. Most restaurant tandoori is bland and uninteresting.