Restaurants & Bars

Minerva

jen kalb | Apr 11, 2005 11:30 AM

We went to the Fairfax Minerva for lunch on sunday - great scene, some things definitely better than others. In many ways a very, very good but typical buffet experience (items like idlis and poori really dont work on buffets; unevenness in quality of dishes; mass production doesnt work for everything. would like to go back for an a la carte meal sometime.

Was unimpressed by the Indian Chinese dishes - TOO SWEET! the "candied" cauliflower was basically like a sweet and sour treatment - with extra chile heat- of deepfried cauliflower, chile potatoes were one-dimensional. No chile chicken, unfortunately.

Best things we had were the masala bindi (fried okra), curd rice (with plenty of curry leaves, chiles etc livening it up) and good homemade tomato and coconut chutnies, curd rice (a cold version tho), dals, goat biryani, a chicken curry with huge cassia cinnamon leaves, chana masala, uppatham (a semolina mush with veg and nuts), once bathed with the tomato chutney. Im told nan was really good but the idlis were cold, and the potatoes that I assume were intended to go with the dosai were mushy and bland instead of chunky and SEEMED like they were made of instant potatoes (I hope not!). Fewer actual vegetable dishes than I had expected - no saag, no cabbage, no eggplant, etc. The rich bread-pudding like dessert that tasted like brown sugar (made with palm sugar maybe?) was good in small quantities. Paneer and mushroom dish was good, but I am easily bored with creamy rich sauces and this had one, similarly a bombay potato dish my son liked.

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