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Great Indian dinner at Delhi Darbar in Edison, NJ

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Great Indian dinner at Delhi Darbar in Edison, NJ

Louise | Jun 1, 2003 08:33 AM

Last night we set out to find Deccani, the Hyderabad place in Edison, but wound up on Oak Tre Road and decided to try this place Delhi Darbar instead. I seem to remmeber reading a recommendation somewhere on these boards...Anyway, it was a great meal and I can second that recommendation.

I'm new to NJ dining so not sure if the location was as truly unusual as it struck me to be. It seemed to be in the space of an old TJ Applebees or TGI Fridays or something like that, perhaps one of those old school diners you see all over the place out here. Perhaps this is typical of Edison but for me it was humorous to be eating delicious spicy curries in what looked like a disused Houlihans. Kind of divine Chowhound retribution for a youth filled with greasy potato skins and adult chaperones drunk on Mudslides...

But I digress. The menu is a nice combination of standards (not 100% on regional Indian fare so forgive me for not being able to classify the origin of the cooking) plus some dishes I haven't seen before. We started with a mixed vegetable pakora appetizer, which was the definite weak link. VERY greasy and not super flavorful. One of the group had a shrimp soup which was pretty good and unusual - kind of like a bisque with a slightly burnt spice falvor too it that I couldn't put my finger on. It had nice pieces of shrimp in it as well.

Mains: Lamb Achari - this was lamb cooked in a pickkling style and served with a very rich brown gravy. This was ordered spicy and was quite hot (I suspect them of underestimating the Caucasian palate a bit at this place, which is predicatble and annoying but not unusual, and we were the only non Asian clientele - the waiter only suggested mild or medium for every dish and we had to suggest spicy to him) but not too hot. It was delicious and a very new combination of flavors for me. The pickling element was subtle but added a nice vinegary kick.

Lamb kumb masala - another lamb in brown gravy, this one with mushrooms. The subtle nuances in spicing and the lack of pickling made this a very different dish to the Achari, and was delicious.

Chicken kesari - chicken cooked in a saffron sauce, VERY heavy on saffron but absolutely delicious. A creamy gravy.

Saag paneer - I am a devotee of this dish and am usually disappointed with the lack of spicing. When it's god though I'm in heaven, and this was the best saag paneer I've had in ages. It was actually spicy and the spinach was not boiled to within an inch of it's life. Delicious paneer too.

Tandoori mixed grill - can't remmebr the name of this dish but that's what it was. A MOUNTAIN of stuff, chicken, lamb, kebabs, everything. The green chicken was included in addition to the usual red.

Kashmiri pulao - extremely colorful, with pineapple and cashews. Very nice.

Breads - good plain naan, and an excellent garlic naan that was VERY heavy on the garlic, which I love.

They have a full bar, a decent wine list, and great beer selection. We had a bottle of wine. From my experience thus far in NJ, this availability of booze on site is unusual.

For four, with all thjis grub and the wine, the bill came to $150 including tip. Service was very good, and they even had a comment card with the bill. Needless to say our comments were good.

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