The fast casual dining craze is in full swing, with restaurants of nearly every cuisine popping up. But Indian food, despite being absolutely delicious, makes up only a sliver of “ethnic food sales” according to the Washington Post.
Based on the fast-casual service model similar to Chipotle, their first location in Flatiron opened in January 2014, and Indikitch recently expanded to a Midtown location this May.
The restaurant prides itself on its all-natural, GMO-free ingredients, and scratch kitchen where the food is made in front of the customer.
Having experienced – and loved – authentic Indian cooking my whole childhood at my best friend’s house, I decided to give Indikitch a try and see if this fast casual experiment can bring aromatic Indian cuisine to the masses.
The restaurant has two locations at the moment - one in Midtown, and this location at 25 West 23rd Street, right near our BI office in Flatiron.
The decor and setup is pretty standard fast casual fare, taking a clear example from Chipotle and similar spots.
The menu is visible everywhere - flags, posters, and on paper - which is nice, because there are a lot of choices to make.
The line was pretty long but I got to the counter extremely quickly. There are four main choices for the meal: Feast, which is essentially a platter with meat, rice, and a side, the Biryani rice bowl, Dosa (which are kind of like Indian tacos), or a salad.
The food is prepped as you watch, with the meat and sauce of your choice (or veggies - nearly half the menu is vegetarian-friendly) sautéed on a flaming grill.
I ordered the Biryani saffron rice bowl with chicken tikka topped with crispy onion fritters, which came with a pineapple sauce and a peanut mirchi dressing. The bowl was just under $10 - not a bad price for the amount given.
A nice little finishing touch - they use flags to differentiate the orders. You can choose from chicken, pork vindaloo, goan fish, marinated Paneer cheese, mushrooms, or spinach and cheese.
For a drink, I chose the über refreshing blood orange lemonade, which you have to mix up before drinking to stir up the mint and ginger settled at the bottom. It costs a tad over $3, but you can also get a soda, water, or beer.
I also ordered samosa on the side for $3.50. These deliciously flaky, crispy, deep-fried pastries are filled with potato, peas, and spices.
My saffron rice bowl was huge, aromatic, and despite being 'mild', was pretty spicy. Not too much to handle, though! And the peanut dressing was perfect with it. I was completely full at the end.
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