As luck would have it, exactly a day after my trip to Radhe Chaat, a North Indian vegetarian eatery on El Camino Real, this side of Lawrence Expressway, I had a chance to go to a very similar place on the other side of Lawrence. India Chaat Cuisine is a relatively new place not too far from India Cash and Carry/ Komala Vilas complex in Sunnyvale.
It was a Saturday night and we were 7 of us including 3 kids. The place was packed to the hilt and we waited for about 20 minutes to get a table. The restaurant seems large from the outside but seating is not as much when you get in. We got seated and a waiter with an iPad showed up instantly to get our orders. We had three tired, sleepy and hungry kids and got to ordering pretty quickly.
I had a weird sense of deja vu seeing so much commonality in the menu with Radhe Chaat which was less than a quarter mile away down the same road. For comparison, I ordered a plate of sabudana vada similar to the one I had ordered at Radhe Chaat. We also ordered a whole bunch of food given the hungry folks at the table.
For the kids, we ordered a mildly spiced Paneer tikka masala to go with their rotis and puris. For adults, there was a thali order, malai kofta, kadhi pakora curry, Thalipeeth, and a mysore masala dosa (yes, you read that right). It was interesting to see a Chaat place carrying north Indian and south Indian food.
The food started arriving soon. The sabjis/curries were good without being great. The Thali was good as was the chaas that came with it. The Thalipeeth was good but lacked a vegetable which was disappointing given that it was being pitched as a full entree. The Mysore masala dosa was heavy and decent.
The food went in pretty quickly but the surprise came afterwards. All of us who consumed the curries had the tips of our fingers stained reddish yellow. No amount of soap could get rid of it. It took me a whole day and multiple soap washes to get it out. Any food item, as good as it tastes, if it leaves such a strong color on my fingers is not cool. I hope the restaurant addresses this quickly.
Ambiance: 7.75/10. Not much to write about. Nothing that stood out.
Service: 8/10. Food and service was quick overall but one minor gripe. The person taking the order insisted that we think through and get our order right since she wouldnt be able to make changes once she pressed Enter on her iPad menu ordering system. These days when service is paramount in the industry, often times I hear folks telling me to try and if we dont like the food, return it for something else or a refund. While I dont expect this from every restaurant, it would be nice to not be told explicitly that there would be no backing out from an order.
Food: 7.5/10. If not for the coloring, this would have been a 8.25. I had no complaints with the taste of the food. It was pretty good actually.
Price: 8.25/10. Price is reasonable. For a dinner table of 7 with three kids, we ended up with a bill of $82.
Restroom: 8/10. The restroom was decent.
Overall: 7.75/10. If not for the coloring, this would have scored a 8.25/10. Hope they address this soon. Otherwise, the food tasted good.