One of the great things about eating Indian food--above and beyond the pure excellence of it as a cuisine, absent the cool intermingling of flavors and the way, unlike any other cuisine, it plays with the notions of hot and cold, spicy and sweet--is the way that a meal progresses. Not in courses, necessarily, but in wild flights of fancy. If you do it right (which means to order a lot, from all over the menu), it is like a steady progression of surprises, of pretty little bites, followed only by more.
MORE New clues after the jump
Last week, I spent some time traipsing around the Indian canon, eating from the North and from the South, eating side-by-side with people with definite opinions on what was good and what was bad, what was right and wrong. The picture at the top of this post is of just one plate--not even my favorite, not close to the best thing I ate. But my question to you is, looking only at that one plate (or platter, really) and paying close attention to everything that I've said, can you guess where I'm eating?
I'm going to be giving the answer to this one in just a little bit, so with that in mind, here's some more clues...
Clues for later if someone doesn't get it quick.
Clue #1: It ain't Poppy. It ain't Spice Route. You've got to think a bit simpler and more traditional--starting with the name.
Clue #2: Idli, dosa, sambar and tandoori on the same menu.
Clue #3: I'm not sure what the good people at Microsoft would do without this place--or more accurately, its recent(ish) expansion.
Clue #4: Under the same name as the restaurant, there are also video stores, chaat shops, groceries and a catering operation, all admirably serving the East Side.