Restaurants & Bars 16

Sabri Nehari

PDaane | May 12, 2004 06:08 PM

I had dinner last week with the artist formerly known as GWiv. He, like all cool and elusive people, now goes by initials....his new handle is GW, c-i-c, o.a.t.b.b.q. That's G.W., commander-in-chief of all things barbequed for the, um, uninitiated.

Anywhoo...on to the food. GW had a taste for Indian food, so I agreed to meet him up on Devon. GW chose Sabri Nehari, a place I had never been.

We ordered the Chicken Churgha, Briyani (which was chicken that evening) and Mong Dal. After our order was placed, the waiter brought us a plate of "salad" items, tomato and cucumber slices over a bed of sliced onions...this was served with mint/pepper and sweet/hot tamarind chutneys.

I didn't think the Briyani was much to write home about. Several pieces of chicken under simply flavored and clove studded basmati rice.

However the Chicken Churga was a surfiet feast, even for us two full grown gentlemen. This is a new dish to me, so I don't know how other's versions compare.

Sabri's method is to deep-fry the whole chicken, cover it in a buffalo-chicken-wing-like sauce, generoulsy sprinkle the carcass with onions and hot peppers, then wrap it in foil for service. A bit intimidating, the whole bird is served alum-en-papiotte with a steak knife jammed into the chest cavity.

The flavors are really what made the bird sing. However what really impressed me in the cooking was that all pieces came out with a close-to-perfection degree of doneness. What that means is that someone had to take the care to make sure that the legs were done and the breast not dried out or vice versa.

We also had naan and kulcha to sop up the dal. After asking for pickles several times, it was finally explained to us that the pickles are only served during breakfast and as Sabri does not serve breakfast, they don't have the pickles in stock.

We rounded out ourselves and out feast with Kulfi, which is served with white squiggles and rose water syrup. I thought it was good, GW said he does not care for rose water syrup or Indian sweets in general.

A delicious meal, good company, a new dish prepared with care and the place filled with the politically correct mixture of individuals for the location, season and food being served....what was not to like?


Sabri Nehari
2511 West Devon
Chicago, Illinois

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