Adventures of a Gastronome in Training (GIT)

One amateur foodie's quest for culinary enlightenment. Musings on cooking, dining, food products, basically all things edible are fair game.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Angon on the Sixth and Brick Lane Curry House

I guess I’ve been on a bit of a curry binge lately. When I was visiting family in Denver, I requested Indian for one of our meals out. Then in the last week, I’ve tried two places in NYC – both with notable results. The first is Angon on the Sixth, located on Curry Row in the East Village. It has been a chowhound darling since opening last fall. Chef Begum Mina Azad surfaced in Manhattan bringing the talent that gave her notoriety at her former digs in Queens at Mina Foods & Restaurant. I had read that the food is “incredibly authentic, though Bangladeshi.” To be honest, I had no idea what that meant. After visiting, I think I have an idea. The food was much lighter and fresher tasting compared with your typical Indian restaurant in the U.S. This was most pronounced in the palak ponir ($8.95), which has thinly shredded spinach paired with homemade cheese. Mina’s rendition was assembled without cream and the spinach was not puréed. This resulted in a delicious, healthy tasting dish. The message boards and the New York Time’s review raved over the dhal fry ($7.95). It is a dish of earthy yellow lentils with a malto-meal like consistency. Again, the dish had a healthy taste, no evidence of the “fry” indicated in the name. The third dish we tried was the chicken korma ($12.95). I’ve had this dish countless times at your standard Indian outlet, but here it is light on the cream, therefore less rich. To be honest, I missed the depth, but I did not get that bogged down feeling that often accompanies an Indian feast. There are still many dishes to I need try at Angon, but my general impression based on what I’ve had is decidedly positive. It’s a nice change of pace from your typical Indian – one that your arteries would welcome.

My next curry fix was satisfied at the Brick Lane Curry House, also on the 6th Street Curry Row. It is described as London or British-style Indian – which to me is just your typical north Indian food I’ve had in the U.S. When this style is executed badly, it’s oily and greasy with a side of clarified butter. When it’s done well, as at Brick Lane Curry House, it’s rich with layers of flavor and completely satisfying. Although I do like the treats from the tandoor, I am a curry girl. My standard is chicken tikka masala, and Brick Lane Curry House’s ($15) does the trick. It’s a little sweeter than average, but there is enough flavor depth to balance. The curry has a thin consistency that avoids the typical greasy pitfalls with ease. The chicken chunks, fresh from the tandoor, were tender and well prepared. I am certain this dish will be calling me back to Brick Lane's door time and time again. The samosas ($5) were solid, though nothing special. But again, I’ve had so many that have missed the mark either by being too greasy or salty that I am happy when it just meets the mark. The saag paneer ($12) was also up to par, rich with cream and savory spinach. Granted, it’s not nearly as good as what I've had at Tamarind. But, when paired with a bit of the buttery, hot from the oven nan ($3), you can’t miss. Overall, Brick Lane Curry House does a very respectable job of satisfying my craving for standard (i.e. London-style), north Indian eats. I'm actually quite relieved to have found a place in Manhattan that can...


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Jennie/Female. Lives in United States/Jennie Auster/New York, speaks English. Eye color is blue.