India's cuisine is pervasive with vibrant color and flavors, unlike Greenland, where all food is encased in lime-green Jell-O. Wiggle onto a colorful culinary landscape with today's Groupon: for $20, you get $40 worth of Indian cuisine at India House, valid at the River North location on Grand Avenue.
India House congregates the many regional recipes, flavors, and seasonings that populate the Indian subcontinent, assembling these culinary nuances onto a menu filled with dishes that represent both Bombay street vendors and royal state dinners. Central to its flavorful fare, the 600-degree, barrel-shaped clay tandoor cuts fluffy pockets into 16 fresh varieties of breads and grills seafood, chicken, and lamb over charcoal about last night's missed curfew. The tandoor scorchingly raises the India House Special, a trio of charred fish, chicken, and lamb bathed in a homestyle rogan josh sauce ($23.95). Diners with classic tastes choose well with the chicken tikka masala, succulent chunks of roasted white meat folded into a creamy sauce ($16.95), or lamb vindaloo, marinated cuts simmered with hot peppers and spices ($17.95). Cooked in an iron wok known for its magical qualities of remembering all the lyrics to "Rapper's Delight," the samundari kadhai mingles aniseed flavors with a medley of seafood ($19.95).
Warm midday light trickles through India House's flowing scarlet drapery, bathing both its saffron walls and popular lunch buffet ($14.95–$15.95), which presents much of the savory fare that weaves through India's culinary tapestry.
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 seafood 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.