We first heard about this place way back in June from our realtor when we were looking for a home. She said they had the best Indian in town and said she ate there daily. All I could think was that they HAD to make some great food to bring someone back EVERY day. I was about to find out, they DO!
This is another place that opens EXACTLY at 5 pm. We are having a hard time getting used to that, but in this case and the others it was worth the wait. We were seated and got right to work on exploring their large menu. I asked the waiter what their signature dishes were or the best they had to offer...his answer was it was all good. I've heard that before, nearly every place I go in this town. Our order went in for meat samosa, fish koliwada, garlic naan, onion kulcha, Lamb Rogan Josh and my Mister ordered Chicken Madras. We were given a complimentary plate of pappadum and two sauces. The Sprout ate all the pappadum...he's in a growth spurt. While he was busy I took the opportunity to look around.
After my little jaunt around the place I was falling in love. The soft lighting, the intoxicating smells coming out of the kitchen and the beautifully peaceful atmosphere (minus US of course...the Sprout usually muddies the water on that front) were casting their spell. When I saw the HUGE buffet against the wall I started to understand how someone could eat a lunch buffet HERE everyday and not get tired of it. The buffet area was almost the whole wall of one side of the restaurant! The Sprout was out of pappadum, but it didn't matter....before he had a chance to squawk the fish koliwada and meat samosa were at the table.
These fish koliwada were so wonderful and tender, I couldn't believe it. My husband and I weren't sure if they were salmon or trout, but let me tell ya...it doesn't really matter. They were perfectly seasoned and had a nice healthy kick. The Sprout loved them and devoured them accordingly, the spice level didn't phase him for a second. My Mister picked the meat samosa, normally I enjoy the vegetable samosa more. These were good, but were were both surprised at how much the meat was seasoned. It didn't ruin them by any stretch of the imagination, but the amount of seasoning was noticeable in comparison to other samosa we've had. We were pleased with our meal so far. My Mister looked past my shoulder and announced that the main entrees and breads were on their way...
Lamb Rogan Josh w/ Lemongrass & Coriander
B-F Garlic Naan & Onion Kulcha
We said our prayer and I got some rice with Rogan Josh, rice with Butter Chicken and some bread on the Sprout's plate. He sat quietly munching away while me and my Mister got to eat our food. Everything was so fabulous! The real star of the table was actually the complimentary Butter Chicken the manager sent to the table. We hadn't ordered it, he just wanted us to try it because it was one of their best dishes. I kind of chuckled to myself and thought he ought to tell his wait staff that it is one of their best dishes so when a customer asks, they can direct them to the Butter Chicken. It truly was the best thing on the table next to our breads and fish koliwada. My Mister and I both agreed (hardly ever happens with food) that it was the best entree of the night, hands down. Our garlic naan was light and soft and the kulcha had a great snap of onion flavor in every single bite. I couldn't believe how much more heat there was to my Rogan Josh than in other Rogan's I've had before. But, I love that. It didn't over power the flavor of anything else, the lamb shined through bringing a nice mild, savory follow up to the initial spark in the Rogan sauce.
I was very pleased with our choices....but the Sprout was finished and every parent of a 2 year old knows that means YOU are finished as well. We asked for the rest of our entrees and breads to be packed and for the bill. Then I was off, chasing after the Sprout while he went wild.
Host India was a delightful experience on a less than happy night weather-wise. But the rain and cold didn't bother me half as much walking out of Host India with a happy belly full with savory, tasty food. I would recommend Host India to even the most discerning palates of Indian cuisine. They lived up to all the hype that I received before dining.... It is my Mister and I have decided it is our new "favorite" in town. Go get yourself some butter chicken from Host India tonight! I promise you won't regret it! Enjoy...