Ancient Egyptians often threw salt up to the heavens to bring rain, which is why modern humans throw pepper at vending machines to summon Diet Coke. Enjoy a showering of seasonings with today's Groupon: for $20, you get $40 worth of Indian fare at Mint Indian Cuisine in Chapel Hill.
Using traditional Indian cooking methods and ingredients, spice specialists at Mint Indian Cuisine craft aromatic dishes that tantalize tasters with a multitude of meats, vegetables, and specialty breads. Diners can browse an expansive menu, which features clay-oven entrees such as chicken kebabs ($15), which are marinated overnight and served straight from the tandoor to ensure they’re as hot and juicy as gossip about Fabio.
Seafood selections capsize hunger pangs with shrimp chili ($17) or salmon masala, fresh fish stewing in dense gravy tides and exotic spices and herbs ($16). Chefs festoon succulent goat or lamb in a creamy cascade of tomato sauce to hatch the tikka masala ($16), and the nargisi kofta volunteers vegetable dumplings to sate vegetarian cravings or use in place of broken earmuffs ($13). Feasters can conclude meals by corralling sweet bites of mango cheesecake ($6) into anticipation-addled maws.
Mint Indian Cuisine
At Mint Indian Cuisine, it's the smallest parts of the dish that matter—the spices. With marinades, chefs infuse their meals with loud or subtle flavors that ring through the mouth like edible symphonies. A secret mixture of Indian seasonings soaks into their signature dish, the Mint chicken kebab, for a full night before the food gurus heat it in the tandoor oven. That oven also pours out freshly baked naan, which meets the standards of full flavor by donning layers of garlic or rosemary. Pounded spices accompany handpicked spinach and seasonal ingredients in vegetarian platters, which act as zestier alternatives to meat than imaginary steaks.
With so many herbs and flavors at its disposal, the kitchen experiments with Indian staples and more obscure dishes alike. Chefs cover the chicken tropical tang, for example, with a raw mango paste and a light coat of spices, simultaneously evoking and augmenting West Indian traditions. Guests can sample this and other dishes that range from fiery to sweet while live sitar music spreads a sense of serenity throughout a dining room accented by white tablecloths.
Downtown Chapel Hill
504 W Franklin St.
Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27516