This Chipotle-style Indian restaurant could give the underrated cuisine mass appeal

IndikitchHollis Johnson/Business InsiderNew York City’s Indikitch is planting a flag on its claim to fast casual Indian food.

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.

Enter Indikitch, the Manhattan-based Indian eatery that’s causing quite a stir.

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.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

The decor and setup is pretty standard fast casual fare, taking a clear example from Chipotle and similar spots.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

The menu is visible everywhere - flags, posters, and on paper - which is nice, because there are a lot of choices to make.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

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.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

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.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

A myriad of freshly made sauces and chutneys are available as you move down the order line.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

The entire ordering experience was incredibly quick, lasting maybe 5 minutes from start to meal.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

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.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

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.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

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.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

I also ordered samosa on the side for $3.50. These deliciously flaky, crispy, deep-fried pastries are filled with potato, peas, and spices.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

They packed a surprising spicy heat, which was tempered by the dipping sauces.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

Their bag describes Indikitch's flavorful and vibrant ethos.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

My favourite for the samosas was the cool mint and coriander chutney.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

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.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

The sign says 'Fortune favours the bold', and with enormous portions, fair prices, and impressively aromatic food fast, fortune may favour Indikitch too.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

NOW WATCH: Briefing videos

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.