Indian food is crave-worthy on the hottest of summer days and the chilliest of winter nights. It's informal enough for a quick lunch, and yet classy enough to be served at a wedding (I've been to one!). Even the pickiest of eaters can find something delightful on the menu that will curb their appetite and start a life-long relationship with Indian food. The mixture of sultry spices and flavors beckon any palette of taste buds - even if some are too shy to try!
In 2012, Travel + Leisure dubbed Providence the top city for Food/Drink/Restaurants. Anyone who's surfed the top ranked restaurants in Providence (the list is vast) will agree. And when it comes to our Indian food, we have a small but delicious community of restaurateurs.
If you're a visitor to the city, or a native looking for some good naan, try out these delicious Providence staples of Indian dining:
Kabob & Curry
While sipping on pitchers of house-marinated Sangria, customers rave about his smokey, creamy Chicken Tikka Masala and appreciate the diverse vegetarian and vegan menus. Meanwhile, Kabob & Curry offers a creative array of sixteen different types of breads, from coconut & fruit nan to deep fried poori.
One reviewer writes, "it blew my mind and certainly loosened a couple of inches on my belt after what I can only describe as my best Indian food experience of my life."
Guests at India can enjoy Indian-inspired cocktails on the patio overlooking Blackstone Boulevard in the summer, eat a full dinner in front of Bollywood movies and belly dancers, or cozy up to a Sunday lunch buffet with unlimited naan. Did I mention half-priced Tuesdays? How about tattoo henna hand designs on Friday and Saturday nights?
India has certainly provided a lively atmosphere for Indian dining, but their food is good too! Guests rave about the hot and spicy Vindaloo, whether it's with a basket of naan, or in the Chicken Vindaloo dish. Carb-conscious diners love that you can swap out rice for kale salad.
One reviewer writes: "Beautiful restaurant, fun outdoor seating on swings in the summer, and fireside private tables in the winter. Very good Indian food. " But don't take their word for it, take a look at all the "best of" awards India won both locally and nationally.
Rasoi is what we call Indian-fusion, which creates a menu that is palatable for Indian food lovers, and their not-so-enthusiastic guests. The menu is huge, they have over forty different entrees in addition to the Thalis and Biryani platters.
Beyond the typical Indian favorites, some high-fived menu items at Rasoi include their fluffy protein-stuffed samosas, salty and savory pesto naan, sweet and spicy mango curry and most famously, their crispy fried cauliflower.
One reviewer writes: "Both times I've been I had the samosas. We ordered an order of each kind, Veggie, Chicken and Lamb. Chicken and Veggie are my fave but the Lamb is tasty too. I have dreams of these pillows of deliciousness. Wow. So crispy and flakey with flavorful fillings all served with this yummie mint sauce. "
Masala Indian Cuisine
Watch out East Side, because you have some serious northern competition. This hidden gem might look like a typical take-out joint and comes without the frills of belly dancers, but they get nothing but rave reviews for their spot-on flavors. Customers are ecstatic for their Chicken Vindaloo, which guests don't hesitate to explain is spicy enough to make your nose run but not enough to, uh, make other things run.
Another reason why we like Masala a whole bunch is because they have a Tuesday-Sunday lunch buffet. And it's good!
One reviewer writes: "Was a bit skeptical because I'm a huge fan of the other Indian restaurants in the Providence area, but this place has proven more to me than it needs. Amazing and attentive staff, cute place, amazing food!"
Another one writes, "Finally, an Indian restaurant not on the East Side of Providence. I am thrilled to say Masala Indian Cuisine is better than any Indian restaurant over there."
Them's fightin' words!
Perhaps with a few more Indian restaurants in Providence, we'll see an Indian summer cook-off for the best Korma, Madras, Masala and Vindaloo!
Masala is located at 1920 Mineral Spring Ave in North Providence.
Another surprisingly worthy opponent is Tadka India, which is located, wait for it, in the Providence Place Mall. Reviewers have a combined consensus of being "pleasantly surprised" by the food, and even more excited about it being the only somewhat healthy option in the food court.
Leave your comments on your favorite Providence Indian Restaurant, and if you're ready for an Indian foodtrip, you can visit them in this order, from bottom to top, or top to bottom!