Wednesday, November 16, 2011

INDIAN FOOD from The Masala Wala

I stumbled upon a new Indian restaurant in the Lower East side of Manhattan as I did my open house tours.  The place is called The Masala Wala.  The owner who hails from Calcutta, India has had 25 years of restaurant experience.  They wanted to create this cafe as a tribute to the South-Asian (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and neighbors) street cuisine.  Meaning, food sold in public market/street by vendors from a stall.
This little place packs a great curb-appeal on a busy street.
As I spoke to the store Manager, he explained that they had just opened 10 days ago.  Upon seeing the photo of the featured dish, I decided to have lunch here.  The price seemed very affordable and the presentation on the photo looked good.

I selected this great dish MasalaWala Biryani.  Basmati rice cooked with saffron and fresh spices.  It also contained some slivered almonds, golden raisins, some crispy noodles on top and large chunks of lamb.

The dish i s served in an eco-friendly plate made of real banana leaf that's been dried and imported from India.  With its texture, I inquired if they washed it.  I was informed that it is thrown to be recycled.

I chose the Biryani Bowl from the "Build-A-Bowl" column where one can choose either vegetable, paneer, chicken, lamb or shrimp as protein.  It was served with Raita (a yogurt sauce with slivered carrots and other spices) and pickle (tasted like Indian chutney) which had some spicy peppers.
The sauces that came on the side.  Raita and pickled peppers and...

As you enter this small restaurant, the setting is modern, clean, and well-lit.

When you get your check, he attaches a gadget to his iPad and sign the check with your finger directly on the iPad. The receipt is sent directly to your email.  Paperless!

The Masala Wala does not only have biodegradable plates but paperless receipts!

The Masala Wala also serves beer and wine.  I did try their MasalaWala mango lassi.  It's a yogurt drink with mango, rose, and salt.

179 Essex Street
New York
(212) 358-9300

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