Ahmed Indian Restaurant UCF
Address10042 University Blvd.
CityOrlando
Phone407-574-7177
Price$
Scott's Review
How authentically Indian is Ahmed. It has a section on the menu for items made with beef. Need to know any more?... Read more
Ataj Indian Restaurant
Address2901 Parkway Blvd.
CityKissimmee
Phone407-507-0072
Price$$
Scott's Review
There’s no reason for us to get into a discussion of preconceived notions for restaurants in this part of town. Let’s just say that a disappointing number of businesses seem to ascribe to the theory that they don’t really need to try very hard to impress customers because, being in a tourist-dominated area, a new wave of customers comes in every week. It’s unfortunate, but it happens. Happily, I did not get that feeling from Ataj. The place was fresh, clean and comfortable, and the staff were all welcoming.... Read more
Bombay Cafe
Address1137 Doss Ave.
CityOrlando
Phone407-240-5151
Price$$
Scott's Review

Bombay Cafe is one of a handful of Indian businesses that comprise a sort of mini mall. There is a sizable food market up front, a clothing store, jewelry and such. The cafe is at the end of the brightly lit short hallway in the back.

It’s a small space that is made to seem even smaller with the inclusion of high dividers that give the impression of cubicles in a bank. The windows at the front look out only to the hallway -- there is no view of the outdoors.

Instead of full service, Bombay Cafe is structured more as a fast-casual restaurant where guests order at the counter then take any available seat and wait for someone to deliver the food. Nowhere on the menu does it say this is a vegetarian restaurant, you just figure it out yourself. No matter, the food is very good, and the people are quite pleasant. 

... Read more
Curry Mantra
Address6127 Westwood Blvd.
CityOrlando
Phone407-233-4636
Price$$
The young man who greeted us and showed us to the lunch buffet at Curry Mantra, a new Indian restaurant, seemed genuinely interested in making sure my lunch guest and I were pleased with the food. Unfortunately, we weren't. ... Read more
Gateway to India
Address790 E. State Road 434
CityLongwood
Phone407-339-9996
Price$$

On my visits to Gateway to India I got the feeling that the owners were attempting to recreate a more authentic experience, one that might appeal immediately to natives of India while offering insight to those unfamiliar. While they may be subject to the limitations of available ingredients and the influence of another place, Americanization does not seem to be a factor.

Instead of “dumbing down” the spices, the kitchen prepared the dishes the way they should be done, mild ones mild and spicy ones spicy, and the results were quite satisfying.

Goat biryani was a good example of the attempts at authenticity. The rice dish was infused with multiple layers of flavors, including notes of cinnamon, clove and cardamom, but the dominant sensation was one of peppery heat, pronounced but not overwhelming, and not so forward that it deadened all the other flavors. The goat was as goat can be, a bit chewy, and the presence of bones is always a bit startling, but the taste was good.

Gateway’s menu features specialties of Northern India but has dishes from throughout the country. One of my favorites was the lamb Hyderabadi, a buttery brown curry flavored with ginger ... Read more

Himas Indian Cuisine
Address5135 International Drive
CityOrlando
Phone407-574-4254
Price$$
Scott's Review
Punjabi is the regional focus. The foods are honestly spiced, and the staff is welcoming.... Read more
Kohinoor
AddressThe Village Shoppes
249 W. State Road 436
CityAltamonte Springs
Phone407-788-6004
Price$$$

Named for one of the Crown Jewels, Kohinoor is indeed a gem. The lamb korma was wonderful. The yellow sauce was smooth and creamy and coated the tender bite-sized chunks of lamb. It was great spooned over a mound of fluffy basmati rice.

The vegetable biryani, a rice dish, was chock-full of such veggies as broccoli, cauliflower and green peas, plus some cashews and raisins. It was an ample and filling vegetarian alternative.

The naan, a thick, slightly leavened bread, was delicious.

The dining room is showing some signs of age and could use some updating, but the staff remains as friendly as ever.

... Read more
Moghul Indian Cuisine
Address401 N. Semoran Blvd.
CityWinter Park
Phone407-599-9001
Price$$
Scott's Review

The word Moghul refers to a member of the Muslim dynasty from Mongol that ruled India until the 19th century. Mughlai cuisine influenced much of what we recognize as typical in most Indian restaurants in America, so you probably won’t see much that will be unfamiliar.

Kofta is a typical Muglai dish, and the malai kofta was the best item I sampled at Moghul. Kofta are, simply, meatballs, but this was a vegetarian dish with meatless balls  fashioned out of paneer, a housemade cheese. The meatballs, deceptively described on the menu as croquettes, had a firm but giving texture, and the creamy sauce, flavored with cumin, coriander and garam masala, was multilayered with flavors. It was good with the basmati rice but even better with the paneer naan.

... Read more
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