From the streets of Calcutta to Greenwich Village come Thelewala's nizami rolls: griddled flatbread wraps filled with meat, cheese, egg, or vegetables. They're made to order, Chowhounds report, and flavors are bright and kicking fresh. JungMann loves the chapli roll, stuffed with juicy, agreeably gamy minced lamb studded with coriander seeds (fried egg, onion, and lime fill out the wrap). wew recommends the ones with lime paneer (grilled Indian cheese plus onion and coriander) or achari aloo tikki (potato, onion, coriander).
"I never got the craze for kati rolls," JungMann admits, "but Thelewala has me reconsidering." tex.s.toast, who seconds JungMann on the lamb roll, gives Thelewala the nod over nearby Kati Roll Co., a local pioneer among Indian street-food joints.
Besides rolls, the brief menu offers a handful of chaat—wew recommends peanut masala, spiked with onion, chiles, spices, and lime—and a few larger plates: chickpea or potato curries, sautéed spiced chicken. Thelewala, open since April, is a more casual cousin of several larger restaurants (Bhojan, Dhaba, Chola), a mostly takeout shop with a few stools, a Bollywood soundtrack, fast-food prices, and nighthawk hours (until 5 on weekends). "We were planning our next visit way before we left – that good," adds wew.
Thelewala [Greenwich Village]
112 MacDougal Street (between W. Third and Bleecker streets), Manhattan