Though The India Garden’s chefs contend with the blazing fires of a tandoori oven every day, they know that not everyone has their tolerance for heat. That’s why they let customers specify their own level of spiciness when ordering a northern Indian entree or specialty tandoori dish. Whether mild, medium, or hotter than a pepper in a garter belt, exotic Indian spices enhance the flavors of meats such as minced ground lamb, sautéed chicken, and shrimp marinated in yogurt. The India Garden’s sprawling menu includes plenty of options for vegetarians and gives the owners a chance to share a cuisine that is close to their heart. As members of a family that emigrated from India, they maintain their native land’s tradition of warmth and hospitality.
The epicurean alchemists at India House, winner of Chicago magazine's Best Indian Buffet designation, draw inspiration from the cuisine of Bombay and Delhi as well as Indian street fare and homestyle tandoori cooking. The menu's more than 250 items please vegetarian and meat-eating palates alike with curries, kebabs, and grilled saris that utilize the flavors of fresh cilantro, chilies, and coconut. A reviewer for the Chicago Tribune praises the restaurant’s “incredibly tender tandoori chicken,” and Chicago magazine says that the fiery "Hyderabadi-style mahi-mahi … is a must." Midday lunchers can dig into a buffet whose myriad options beget multiple trips and consultation with a pack of tarot cards before deciding which delicious curries should be ladled over naan and rice.