Monday, September 1, 2008

Something Special Is Coming To J Street

As a native of Edison, NJ -- which has one of the highest Indian populations in the country -- I consider myself somewhat of a connoisseur of fine Indian food. I test places out wherever I go, and often am not overly impressed.

Recently, at a housewarming party, I got into a conversation with some folks about Indian food in the DC area. They told me that they trek all the way from DC to Arlington just to eat at a restaurant called Sangam. I was in the Arlington area yesterday, and tried it. It was quite good.

The owner (very friendly) said they were opening up a kiosk in J Street! For all incoming Class of 2012'ers, this is NOT normal for college cafeterias. This...put bliss.

And apparently, today's the very first day the kiosk is open! So, is this a cutting-edge, amazingly-timely GWBlogspot dining review? Yes...yes, it is. (Compare and contrast to the GW Hatchet's cutting-edge review of Chipotle. Great job, guys.)

The Sangam dishes I highly recommend are Saag Paneer (spinach and cheese cubes) and Malai Kofta Curry (vegetable balls in a nice yellow sauce), both vegetarian. Also pretty good was the Paneer Makhani (cheese cubes in orange sauce). Hopefully all of those are at J Street. If not, a trip to Arlington may be in order. I'd give this place a solid 8 on a 1-10 scale.

For other Indian food aficionados, I have a few other Indian food recommendations in the area:
  • Bombay Palace near campus -- 2100 K, NW. Big advantage: weekend buffet! Saag Paneer is pretty good, other stuff is ok. They don't always have Saag Paneer in the buffet, so good to call and ask. I'd give it a 7 on a 1-10 scale.
  • Ascot -- 1708 L Street, NW (5-10 minute walk from campus). Big advantage: Weekday buffet! Saag Paneer is good, other stuff is ok. They also don't always have Saag Paneer in the buffet, so good to call and ask. I'd give it a 7.5 on a 1-10 scale.
  • Heritage India in Dupont -- 1337 Connecticut Ave., NW (immediately below Dupont Circle, about a 15-20 minute walk from campus). AMAZING Paneer Makhani. I've tried a million places and if Heritage ever shuts down, it will be a blow to Paneer Makhani fans everywhere. If you go to Heritage and don't order the Paneer Makhani, that's like going to Rome for Chinese food. They, unfortunately, do not have a buffet. They, fortunatley, do deliver. I'd give it a solid 9 on a 1-10 scale. Maybe even 9.5.
  • Udupi Palace 1329 University Blvd East Takoma Park, MD. I'm not going to pretend this is easy to get to. But if you're ever near University of Maryland, you need to try this place. Awesome weekday and weekend buffets - all vegetarian. Tons of variety. Really low price. If this place were any closer to downtown DC, I'd be 30 pounds heavier. Solid 9 out of 10.
  • There are some others in the area in the 3-5 range -- not really worth highlighting.
Feel free to share your favorite Indian restaurants or Indian dishes below. And to the good folks at Sangam, welcome to GW!


Anonymous said...


ian said...

Ate there the other day...

Yellow Rice: Good... some clumps, but well seasoned

Mixed vegetables in curry-like sauce: aroma of this dish is what attracted me to this place, and it didn't disappoint. No surprises, but satisfying

Naan : Too bread-y and tough. Definitely pass on it.

Joey said...

Good reviews but if you have a 1-10 scale, you can't have *.5; then it is a 20 point scale. :)

dimpleresta said...

Best bombay food in edison nj, I've been here many times over the years for various wedding and wedding related functions. Great Indian food restaurant in edison nj.
bombay food in edison nj