Sunday, April 01, 2007

Bombay Bistro

Open the Bombay doors!


The Woman told a co-worker from India about the great buffet meal we experienced back during the rains of winter and was informed that the best Indian dining experience in Austin is at the Bombay Bistro. We are both lovers of Indian cuisine. (For me it is second only to Thai.) So, when Valentine's Day rolled around, guess where the lovers had to go? Fortunately, this time we knew of the destination beforehand, so there were no stunt-car maneuvers across multiple lanes of traffic. At least none beyond the normal techniques required to get to Braker and 183 during rush hour.

The nice thing about rush hour dates is beating the crowd to dinner. They're all lemming home on the highway in a crowd and then lemming their way to a restaurant in a crowd. We just zip to our assignation on surface streets and sip the beverage of our choice at our leisure and then order something incredible to eat.

Which is exactly what they have at Bombay Bistro--incredible things to eat. Our source did not fail us, may a thousand rose petals perfume her presence. Only a few tables were occupied when we arrived. The light was suitably subdued and became subduer as the evening progressed. Highly romantic. Until you sit on the booth cushion that allows you to rest your chin on the table. (I recommend going for a chair, instead.)

We ordered drinks and they brought the papadum with sauces and then the dilemma was upon us. One virtue of the buffet is that you don't have to make the hard choices. You really can have it all. And then waddle out after. But The Woman discovered the solution--the Jugalbhandi Dinner for Two ($40). Check this out:

  • Vegetable Samosas
  • Tandoori Chicken
  • Salmon Tikka
  • Tandoori Prawn
  • Lamb Korma
  • Saag Paneer (spinach)
  • Chicken Tikka Masala
  • Onion Kulcha
  • Kachcumber Salad (cucumber)
  • Onion Kulcha
  • Rasmalai or Mango ice cream
Dinner for two? I'd say more like four! I couldn't leave without trying the okra, so we ordrered Bhindi Masala. The waiter warned us that it was a lot of food, but we were already planning on taking a good portion home, so one more dish wasn't going to change that. And we did take home two large, square, sectioned containers and two small containers. Enough for a couple more meals, so figure that into your $40 if you're getting sticker shock.

Bombay Bistro definitely rates as our best Indian dining experience in Austin to date. And the other place was quite good, so that's saying something. They also have a buffet, so if you want to try out a lot of things without doing the dinner for two, go for it. You might even see us there.


kelly said...

The difference between Thai and Indian being vast?
I don't believe I've ever had either save for a little curried this or that--
What should I start with?

Brad Whittington said...

There is a big difference between Thai and Indian. Thai has more in common with other Asian cuisines (Chinese, Vietnamese), so it would probably taste more familiar. Indian tends to have stronger, more dramatic flavors.

So, if you want to ease into it, start with Thai. I'd recommend a red or green curry dish. (If it says potatoes, pick something else.) Or, if you like peanuts and noodles, try Pad Thai.

For Indian, try Tandori Chicken for a mild but tasty introduction and Tikka Masala for a more flavorful entre. In most places you can get it as mild or hot as you like. Indian can be confusing because of the plethora of options available with foreign names. I'd say Tikka Masala with rice and naan is a good place to start.