I was out and about on the Upper West Side after attending a hospitality conference and wanted to try some authentic Indian cuisine, hence my latest visit to Aangan Restaurant, at 2701 Broadway at 103rd Street. http://www.aanganindianrestaurant.com/
I found the immediate atmosphere of the restaurant to be quaint, cozy, and very authentic of Northern Indian style restaurants. Dark woods, pastel colors, fresh flowers and soft linen tablecloths complemented the dining room. Ethnic Indian music added to the ambience. I found peace and tranquility there.
I was seated immediately and promptly served. While sipping a fresh glass of water, I ordered Mionetto Prosecco, a sparkling wine from Italy. I found the grape notes to be most lovely and refreshing.
I ordered one of their lunch specials, (perfectly priced under $12.00), the non-vegetarian lunch. This lunch was a large plate with little cups of each course, which I found to be very convenient. Buttery, fresh Naan was served alongside the dish.
As part of my dish, my basmati rice was perfectly cooked, did not stick and had a nice variety of vegetables to round out the dish. My Chicken Malai Kebab was both tender and delicious – I dipped it into some of the other dishes so I made sure I achieved the many flavors at once ! I experienced many flavor and heat profiles in this dish, which I found to be quite pleasant.
My Lamb Vindaloo was also very tender and moist – easily cut with a fork. This dish was very savory and also had varying degrees of heat. What I loved most about it was the heat sneaked up as I was eating it.
My Dal Makhani was absolutely delicious ! The black lentils in sauce were magnificent and complemented the other dishes marvelously. Raita was nearby so I was able to dip anytime I needed – I found this to be very refreshing – there were also diced garden fresh mixed vegetables with a nice “kick” of spice from their specialty house dressing.
To cap off my lovely lunch was rice pudding with tiny pieces of orange in it – it was unlike any other rice pudding I ever tasted. This is one of my all time favorites and urge everyone to try this.
The chef was very kind in introducing me to their colorful yogurt mango drink with ice – I found this to be sweet, refreshing and much like a milk shake. A perfect end to a most lovely escape into Northern India without paying for the flight !
Folks – the price was right, service was marvelous and the flavors – Robust ! Visit Aangan today and tell them I sent you !
– Robert Skinner