I treat Indian food like a quiet son. All of the other cultural foods get all of the attention and here you have Indian food just standing in the corner. When I think of Asian food, Indian food diffidently doesn’t cross my mind but there are definitely times where I crave it.
From what I’ve noticed, most Indian hot spots are in Tempe and Chandler. I’m sure there are a lot on the Northern Phoenix side but that’s very far away. In any case, my friend’s Indian friend recommended Chutney’s.
For me, Indian food must have the right level of spice and spiciness. That means they have to use a certain blend of really intense spices and also make me sweat. Of course, I told the chef to give me the hottest and darn right he did.
I went here with about 8 of my crew. What was awesome is that we had an Indian guy order some awesome dishes we could try.
I apologize if I butcher the names of almost all of the Indian food but I need to tell you, I enjoy the heck out of Indian food.
The appetizer laid out this spiced flatbread and three different types of chutneys but the only distinct one was the red pieces that looked and tasted like candied onions. The other two sauces are typical indian fare. A sweet red sauce and a green, almost minty green sauce. The flat bread had cumin baked into it. It was a light appetizer.
Ordered as an appetizer and it literally looks like Sweet and Sour Pork. I’d argue it tasted like it too. I didn’t think it was worth $8.00 but it was pretty good. Decently spicy but I’ve had garlicier foods.
Pepper Lamb Rogenjosh
I asked for the hottest Masala they could give me and here I got a very spicy pepper lamb masala. In hindsight, I kind of regretted it because it was hard for me to distinguish the flavor of this one because there was so much heat. I guess I should have listed to the table: never ask an Indian chef to make it the “hottest you can make it”.
Standard orange-sauced chicken Masala. If you haven’t had it before, you can describe it as the most basic Indian dish you could get. I’d recommend this for beginners who have no idea about Indian food. In general, theirs did the job.
Vegetarian Dumpling Masala
This yellow sauced dish had pretty big dumplings in it. Upon further inspection, and taste, I noticed that it was potato-based. I only tried a little bit but it was pretty good for a vegetarian dish. It reminds me a lot of a very thick Chicken and Dumplings Soup but with uch more curry in it.
We had two what looked like relishes on our table. They tasted very refreshing and because my food was way too spicy, we got this to cool our palates down.
The most impressive dish by far was the Dosa, a gigantic crepe filled with spiced potatoes. My Indian friend said that this crepe was made of rice flour and tasting it, you can tell it was a bit sour which means the dough has been fermented a bit. Either way, this crispy, delicious piece of work has this spicy potato filling in it that reminded me a lot of the vegetarian dumpling curry my friend had.
The naan bread was charred and delicious. We like to go all out and order a lot of Naan. We ordered regular naan, buttered naan, the garlic naan and the filled naan. I would say the best naan I had there was definitively the buttered naan.
There’s a weird Indian MTV station that played in the background. In general, the theme of the restaurant radiates with a glow of “yellow warmth” with specs of rosy red due to the color of the silverware. The rice and masala dishes come in these legitimate metal pots that may look deceptively small, but the content fills you up fast.
My friend told me that the manager said one of their servers was gone today so our food was slower than normal. Either way, they had great service or the waiters were very friendly. I had the spiciest masala and they kept giving me pitchers of water to drink.
About $20 dollars a meal. Disclaimer is that we as a group ordered a lot of food. Main course is usually about $12-$15 dollars and the extra pieces of naan, appetizers, and relishes made the price rise a bit. Since we all ate each other’s food, we decided to split the bill evenly.
A traditional Indian food restaurant is like a traditional Chinese food restaurant. It needs a huge menu to feel legit. Chutney’s has a lot of items and it is presented in a nice, Silk-Road-like feel.
Chutney’s is a great place for your Indian fix. I unfortunately can’t tell you the best Indian restaurants in Phoenix mainly because I don’t go out of my way to eat it as often as sushi, noodles, Chinese food and Korean food. I guess I’ll have to go to more Indian restaurants. Do you have any Indian restaurants that are a must-go in the Phoenix area?