This week I did something a little different and went to lunch at Tantric in the theater district. Different because it was lunch and not dinner, and also different because I have not tasted a lot of Indian food. I had my friend Jennifer with me who loves Indian food and takes every opportunity possible to try new Indian restaurants. She was the perfect eating companion!
Tantric has a contemporary and vibrant feel to it which I think is unusual for an Indian restaurant and I liked it. The staff was enthusiastic and helpful, but when I read reviews of the “dinner before theater experience” it seemed that timing can be an issue. We ordered the buffet and despite the fact that we were mostly serving ourselves, the service did seem a little disorganized.
About the buffet….The buffet is priced at $10.95 and this is a great value especially for those who have a hearty appetite at lunchtime. Some of the offerings included in the buffet are : Naan (Indian bread), Alou Pakoda which is essentially fried slices of potatoes, Tomato Coconut Soup (interesting and very sweet) and Lemon and Balsalmic Rice. Vegetable dished included Mixed Daal (I liked this), Chana Saag (kind of spinach puree-hmmm), and Bhindi Do Piazza ( a very spicy and interesting okra dish). The two main entrees were the Lamb Tikka Masala- this was my favorite, and a Chichen Curry- also good.
The manager of Tantric came to our table and explained that they try to serve Indian dishes from all over India and are now offering some Southern Indian dishes. He asked if we would like to try a complimentary Masala Dosa which is an Indian style crepe stuffed with seasoned potatoes and onions, cilantro, mint, mixed vegetable lentil and samber. It was interesting, but I thought too filling for lunchtime fare. Jennifer also ordered the Smosa Crisp Stuffed Turnovers. There are two types on the lunch menu: one filled with spicy potatoes and green peas and the other with spicy minced lamb and green peas. She thought the flavor was good, but that they should have been crisper on the outside.
This was an interesting experience for me – Indian food is really so new to me that it is very difficult to judge. I think it may also be difficult to judge a restaurant by their lunch buffet. My friend Jennifer thought that the food we tried was just average. but it would be fun to go back and try one of their dinner entrees. Another friend had dinner there last week and loved it and said ; “I had a fabulous chicken korma and peshwari nan”. So there you have it… a definite undecided! Check out heir menus at www.tantricbistro.com!
Thanks for reading and looking forward to your comments!
P.S. Lauren will be back in two weeks and I can’t wait to resume our eating adventures!