When I travel abroad, feasting on Indian cuisine is last on my mind. I prefer to try the local cuisine of the place I am visiting. I love to try new flavors, learn about the culture and tradition of the places. The favorite food that american enjoy is Pizzas, Fries and Burgers. Home to immigrants, this is one country, where there is variety of food from every nation, be it Chinese, Malaysian, Mexican, Italian, etc. But then, if you are travelling with family and friends then you don’t get much option to choose, it is mostly the choice of the majority.
During my visit to Chicago at my sister’s home, I was in the company of my family from Lagos and Spain, who enjoy Indian food, (I have tried Indian restaurants in Lagos and Spain but have not been too happy) so naturally they wanted to visit indian restaurants specially for biryanis and street food of India.
The Indian restaurants in Chicago cannot meet the standard of the restaurants in India. Devon street in Chicago is micro India, where you see lots of Indian shops, Indian grocery stores and restaurants.
We visited Tiffin at Devon street several times.
Although there are many indian restaurants on this single stretch of street, Tiffin is the most popular restaurant at Devon street and has a great variety of dishes on their menu. Their butter chicken is too sweet but the kids seemed to enjoy it. Family enjoyed the Malai Chicken and Mutton Rice too, although I found mutton a bit hard to bite, wish they would cook it to a bit more tender consisitency. On another day, we went again for indian buffet at Tiffin, they had quite a good selection. I didn’t enjoy much, because I tend to compare it with what I get back home, but my cousins did enjoy it.
Getiing street food like samosas and bhajiyas is a treat, which is okay but they cannot replicate the taste of chutneys that go with these snacks.
Another favorite stop was at Mysore Woodland, a south Indian vegetarian place that also had butter paneer and chole bature on their menu apart from the regular south Indian cuisine. The chutney that they serve with dosas is stale and sambar too watery. I , as usual, ordered my onion uttappam, which is never a disappointment. The kids ordered sada dosa and were quite amused with cone shaped dosas. The milky sherbet was a welcome change.
On the day, my friend from Indiana came to meet me at Devon street, we walked into a Pakistani restaurant Ravi Kabab House, once more we had biryani and kababs. It was disppointing but then…I was beginning to lose faith in finding a good indian restaurant.
During my six weeks stay in Chicago, I didn’t much enjoy the Indian cuisine there, although trying the betel-nut paan at the street corner at Devon street was quite a treat.
To be continued