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Apr 4, 2012 03:17 PM

Upscale indian restaurants to host a party - Peninsula or South Bay

I am looking to host a suprise birthday party for my husband and wanted to see if there are upscale Indian restaurants to do so? I will be footing the bill for the party, so nothing extravagant, but I want something decent. Comparable to Sakoon (Castro, Mountain View) or Arka (Sunnyvale). Nothing in the city, since there will be kids involved and I don't want parents to go through the hassle of parking and what not.

Prefer Peninsula (San Mateo, Palo Alto, Mountain View) or South Bay. Would consider Fremont also.


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  1. Is there a reason you prefer to not use Sakoon?

    In Palo Alto/Mountain View: Amber India or Passage to India stick out in my mind. Passage to India has a back room. Not sure if Amber India does.

    In Newark/Fremont, Bombay Garden has a sizable area for parties.

    1. Amber India in Mountain View or Turmeric in Sunnyvale are both nice, upscale, and have good food.

      1. Agree on Amber India & Turmeric recs; however, I too am curious as to the elimination of Sakoon.

        ETA: there's also Amber Santana Row. Forgot to mention that Turmeric holds their private parties upstairs so you'll be completely separated from rest of restaurant which is a plus.

        4 Replies
        1. re: ceekskat

          Hey ceekskat, I have a question for you regarding something you posted in another thread. Is it possible to send private messages here?

          1. re: General_Tso

            Sorry, we don't have a built in PM system. If it's something food related, please ask the question publicly so everyone can benefit from the answer. If it's not food related, you can leave an email address (use a web-based throw-away email if you don't want to reveal your main address) and ask him to contact you.

            1. re: General_Tso

              If it's related to that topic, I'm happy to answer on that thread.

              1. re: ceekskat

                It's about something different entirely. Several months back you mentioned that you picked up a 4 quart wide Staub on sale at Williams Sonoma. I just wanted to ask your opinions on it, how useful you think it is, etc. Is it big enough for an average sized beef roast?

          2. The Menu - Artisan Food of India is a new upscale Indian place in Mountain View with plenty of room for private parties ( It's in the same space that Southern Spice and Swagat used to have on El Camino west of San Antonio, but it's remodeled and nicer. Passage of India really isn't in the same category food wise as The Menu, Arka, Sakoon, Amber India, Amber Dhara, or Turmeric.


            5 Replies
            1. re: mdg

              How is Passage of India "not in the same category" as Tumeric? They both provide satisfactory Indian buffets with North Indian food with some more interesting dishes thrown in. I haven't sensed some huge gulf in food quality or in specialties between them. In terms of atmosphere, there also doesn't seem to be a big difference.

              1. re: goldangl95

                I am sorry, but PTI and Turmeric are definitely not in the same category. PTI dishes out standard North American Indian buffet fare, while Turmeric serves creative and special regional specialties.
                No comparison at all...

                1. re: bigger_eyes

                  Hm. Perhaps I've been to Turmeric on off days. Besides an occasional interesting fish dish, or interesting veg. dish, I haven't found their selection distinctly more diverse nor the preparations/taste distinctly better - will have to try again.

                  1. re: goldangl95

                    The Chef at Turmeric is truly talented, but the inevitable 'dumbing down' of the food for the generic Sunnyvale Indian crowd does happen, which has disappointed me on occasion.

                    I would suggest a conversation with the chef, and a request for your favorite dishes a day in advance..!!

                    1. re: bigger_eyes

                      There is a particular cauliflower dish I tasted during a private event at the restaurant & at a catered dinner in someone's home & it is one of the best vegetarian dishes, Indian or otherwise, I've ever had. I believe it's dum gobhi (whole baked cauliflower) but don't see it on the online menu (haven't eaten there a la carte).

            2. Hmm . . . well when I read the title, I was planning to suggest Sakoon, but now I'm at a loss!

              2 Replies
              1. re: LabLady

                Turmeric is my favorite Indian place in the Bay Area....only restaurant I've ever been to where the vegetarian items are so good I prefer them over the meat items.

                1. re: Bunson

                  There is a huge amount of wonderful Indian in the Sunnyvale area. If you like Indian vegetarian food, I would recommend trying Chaat Paradise or Madura (note - these places are not "high end indian" for purposes of hosting a party recs).