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Amber Cafe in Mountain View: This Chaat Made the Honor Roll


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Amber Cafe in Mountain View: This Chaat Made the Honor Roll

katya | May 16, 2006 09:22 PM

Despite a very mediocre dinner at Amber India back in September, the boyfriend and I decided to check out the sister restaurant, new and cheap (cheap being our favorite word) Amber Cafe.

I can't wait to go back.

The veggie samosas (cholewale samosas, $3.99) were excellent. I think it would be easy for someone to dismiss them as they were simple and nothing really out of the ordinary about them. They just generally did extremely well on the entire Samosa Report Card.

Samosa Report Card
Grade: A
Not too fried. perfect.
--Inside Samosa
Grade: A
Perfect spiciness, good flavors
Grade: A
Solid channa with a simple topping of raw onions and cilantro - just like my favorite at Chaat Cafe.

The aloo tikki (mutter adrak ki aloo tikki, $3.99) was our least favorite item. However, it was still very, very good - probably the best aloo tikki (or as we call it, Inside-Out Samosa) I've had. It was a high achiever on the Aloo Tikki Report Card.

Aloo Tikki Report Card
Grade: A
Perfectly lightly fried
--Inside Aloo Tikki
Grade: A
At many places it's cold (as though it was just reheated) or too mushy (I'm looking at you, Chaat Cafe). There were yellow lentils inside which almost looked like corn
--Channa & the Rest
Grade: A-
Channa with a whole lot of mint sauce and yogurt. Sometimes those two can be overpowering but they were fine here.

And then, there was the A+ student: the Malai Methi Chicken Wrap ($6.99). This consisted of two fenugreek-seasoned chicken kebabs with mint chutney, wrapped in a slightly fried paratha. This dish, like, haunts me.

Malai Methi Chicken Wrap Report Card

Grade: B+
The boyfriend said it was a little too fried. I preferred to call it "griddled."
--Inside Malai
Grade: A+
The flavors melded perfectly. YUMMMMM!!!
Extra Credit 10 points Not only did this dish taste amazing, but it's hard to find-ness (you know, rarity) at other restaurants gets brownie points.

I've never seen anything like this wrap except for the awesome Kathi Kebab at Vik's in Berkeley. Speaking of which, there is Kathi Kebab on Amber Cafe's menu. I can't wait to try it.

Our bill came to $15, and it was too much food for the two of us. Amber Cafe has a menu with a lot of great and unusual sounding dishes. In addition, there are combo options (like curry or wrap, samosa, and salad for $7.99) which is a great option for trying a lot of stuff at a chaat joint when dining alone.

Amber Cafe
600 W. El Camino Real (near Castro)
Mountain View, CA 94040


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