I finally made it to Berkeley's famed Vik's Chatt warehouse. We ordered samosas, idalis, and the first item on their specials menu. Both my Indian husband and I are not too impressed with their food... I know I'm going against many opinions but we just didn't find their food to be especially great. They are not bad, but not good either. And if you break down the cost, $1.50 each for a samosa and $1 each for a idali is actually quite pricy.
On the plus side, we bought some of their milk sweets and find them to be delicious. Here is a list of what we tried. Son pupdi (my favorit)- a spun sugar confection that is flavored with saffron and some crushed pistachios. Sandesh - either original or saffron flavor. They are a round disc, also strongly flavor with cardamon. Actually, practically all Indian sweets are flavored with saffron, cardamon, cloves, or a combination of all. They are milk sweets, according to my husband, they are made by boiling milk until all the liquid are evorated and only the solids are left over. Everything is incridibly sweet, almost starchy and fudgy in texture. Another item we tried is the Jilebi, which is a fried dough soaked in sugar syrup. This item is not a milk sweet. We also had rasa malai, which is a spongy ball of white stuff, also made from milk, and it is served in a milky creamy syrup flavored with cardmon and specks of sliver.
Indian sweets are REALLY sweet, which is not something my Chinese palate is used to. But I've grown to like them as something completely different than a Chinese sweet.