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A round metal tray with little metal cups of curries and dals, with small puffy flatbreads.
One course of a Gujarati meal at Vatan.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

23 Standout Indian Restaurants in NYC

A city-wide selection of outstanding Indian restaurants serving the subcontinent’s diverse cuisine

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One course of a Gujarati meal at Vatan.
| Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Indian restaurants in New York City go back over a century, and Times Square was an early hotspot. Perhaps the most famous example was the paradoxically named Taj Mahal Hindu Indian Restaurant, founded in 1918 at 242 West 42nd Street when many South Asian students, businesspeople, dock workers, and sailors lived in boarding houses in the vicinity. The New York Times mentioned it glowingly.

Midtown remained the main repository of Indian restaurants, as curries migrated onto the menus of more effete restaurants and hotels. By the 1970s, there were many steam table establishments serving Punjabi fare in various parts of the city, ladling rice and curries into compartmentalized plates and slinging tandoori items that competed with our earliest barbecue joints when it came to smoky flavors.

Then along came campuses of Indian restaurants in places like Jackson Heights, Murray Hill, Jersey City, Utopia Parkway, and Edison, New Jersey, with sit-down restaurants offering specialties of several regions. Eventually, we had restaurants dedicated to individual dishes like biryani and dosas, the food of a single city or region, and Mumbai street snacks. Finally, a new variety of luxury restaurant appeared, offering more creative and nuanced takes on classic dishes, along with strong cocktails, attracting a whole new generation of diners.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Clove

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1592 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10031
(646) 918-6644
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Located directly across the street from the ornate entrance gates of City University, this newer and flashier cousin of Fort George old timer Kismat (founded 1981) has been around seven years. Under chef Anil Ahmed, the menu explores regional cuisines, as well as Americanized manifestations of classic Indian dishes. In the former category is sahina, fritters of taro leaves also popular in Trinidad. There’s even a hamburger on the menu.

Four spinach fritters on a white plate.
Sahina fritters
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

2. Doaba Deli

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945 Columbus Ave
New York, NY 10025
(212) 222-2636

Looking for truck stop fare? This worn-down, but much loved, double-storefront deli is named after a region of the Punjab, and was opened by Inderjit Singh over a decade ago. The steam table displays all that’s available that day, with a preponderance of vegetarian dishes, though chicken and the occasional goat or lamb curry are also available. Add tandoori chicken to the menu and you have a beguiling number of choices, but not too many.

A white tray with four vegetarian dishes in shades of green and reddish brown with a bowl of rice on the side.
Here’s your lunch! from Doaba Deli.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

3. Indian Accent

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123 W 56th St
New York, NY 10019
(212) 842-8070
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Located in Le Parker Meridien Hotel, this luxurious restaurant is a branch of an original in New Delhi, and when it arrived in 2016, it brought a renewed sense of excitement for Indian cuisine in a fine-dining setting — which doesn’t mean it wasn’t any fun. Sometimes using local ingredients like pastrami, the place filled its menu with small and surprising dishes that deployed things like foie gras and black truffles. The dishes are often named as strings of ingredients (for example: “pork dumplings, broth, nettle oil, crispy black rice”), making them easier to order.

Two wafers with a filling between them, garnished with foie gras and an amaranth leaf.
Foie gras, Indian style, at Indian Accent.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

4. Patiala Indian Grill

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371 W 34th St
New York, NY 10001
(212) 564-8255
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This modest spot near Penn Station, named after the fourth largest city in India’s Punjab and owned by I. Srinivas Gangula, delivers affordable and magnificent meals that consist of a main course, a couple of sides, bread, and rice — more than the average diner can eat. The chicken tikka masala is especially good, swimming in enough creamy sauce to drench both rice and bread. Snacks available, too, from a limited menu that changes daily.

A white plastic tray with compartments filled with red, green, and yellow dishes, with wadded flatbread and serving of rice.
Chicken tikka masala at Patiala.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

5. Temple Canteen

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09 Holly Ave No 143
Queens, NY 11355
(718) 460-8493
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Founded in 1993 and located in the basement of Flushing’s Ganesh temple, this place serves a strictly vegetarian menu of South Indian dishes, running to multiple varieties of dosa, plus uttapam with a choice of batter inclusions, and idly in several formats. There are vegetable curries and rice casseroles, too, in a family friendly setting. Remove your shoes to visit the Hindu temple upstairs, where all are welcome.

The monster paper dosa at Temple Canteen is enough for two
The immense paper dosa, with chutneys and sambar.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

6. Jackson Diner

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37-47 74th Street
Jackson Heights, NY 11372
(718) 672-1232
Visit Website

Jackson Diner has been one of the city’s most famous Indian restaurants almost since it opened in 1980 by Manjit Singh in a space previously occupied by a diner of the same name. It sought to serve the needs of a wide variety of customers, vegetarian and not, who visited Jackson Heights’ Indian shopping district. Having introduced many New Yorkers to Indian fare for the first time, it moved down the block to much bigger digs. Customers order off a menu of mainly northern Indian specialties.

Several receptacles filled with curries in the front window of Jackson Diner
Pre-pandemic, Jackson Diner was famous for its all-you-can-eat buffet.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

7. Adda

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31-31 Thomson Ave
Queens, NY 11101
(718) 433-3888
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This Long Island City canteen from Roni Mazumdar and Chintan Pandya channels the food of Mumbai, West Bengal, and other northern locales — not as it's usually cooked, but as it’s prepared in home settings. When the place, wall papered with newsprint, appeared nearly four years ago it caused a sensation, not only through the pungency of its freshly ground spices, but the novelty of many dishes. The pastry-topped Lucknowi biryani alone should be enough to induce any diner to go. The space will become more takeout focused as Mazumdar and Pandya find another spot to expand Adda.

Several colorful Indian dishes seen from above.
An assortment of Indian dishes from Adda.
Gary He/Eater NY

8. Cardamom

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43-45 43rd street, Queens Blvd
Queens, NY 11104
(718) 706-9718
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Located on a side street in Sunnyside, this charming spot specializes in the food of the former Portuguese colony of Goa, which has its own distinct cuisine that sometimes features ingredients like red wine and pork. But the menu via chef Alwyn Gudhino is more broad ranging than that, so don’t despair of seeing some of your pan-national Indian favorites on the bill of fare.

Two bowls of curry, one brown and one yellow, the yellow one with shrimp in it.
Goat xacutti and shrimp caldin at Cardamom.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

9. Vatan

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409 3rd Ave
New York, NY 10016
(212) 689-5666
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A single multi-course, all-you-can-eat, vegetarian (and kosher) Gujarati meal is the focus of Vatan, a Murray Hill fixture for decades owned by Prashant Shah. To make the meal more enjoyable, the entire premises is made to look like an Indian Village where seating is inside a small building, on a balcony, or beneath a spreading banyan tree. Pace yourself, so as to have an appetite when you reach the dessert of thickened yogurt flavored with saffron called shrikhand.

A small structure, a balcony, and a tree are all part of the landscape inside the restaurant.
Eat in an Indian village at Vatan.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

10. Sahib

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104 Lexington Ave
New York, NY 10016
(646) 590-0994
Visit Website

Sahib travels all over northern India to collect recipes — there are four kinds of bone-in goat curry alone, including one from Kashmir and another from Kolkata — which is a good measure of the seriousness of an Indian restaurant. This is one of a handful of Hemant Mathur restaurants in Manhattan, and the vegetarian dishes here keep pace with the meat-bearing ones, including paneer kali murch (cheese in a creamy black pepper sauce) and achari bindi (okra in a sauce sharply flavored with Indian pickles). For takeout, this food travels exceedingly well.

Four dishes in various shades in pans with handles.
An assortment of dishes from Curry Hill’s Sahib.
Liz Barclay/Eater NY

11. Saravanaa Bhavan

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81 Lexington Ave
New York, NY 10016
(212) 684-7755
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This massive international restaurant chain founded in 1981 by P. Rajagopal now boasts a pair of branches in Manhattan (the other is on the Upper West Side). The menu focuses on the strictly vegetarian dishes of South India, and goes way further than the usual dosas and idlys. Examples are adai aviyal, a Keralan dish that features multiple vegetables in a sauce of yogurt and coconut milk, accompanied by a pair of red flatbreads; and bisibelabath, a veggie-studded rice casserole from Karnataka.

A metal tray with compartments containing a white vegetable curry and two red flatbreads.
Adai aviyal.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

12. Sona

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36 E 20th St
New York, NY 10003

A red snapper ceviche in pink coconut milk, cone-shaped dosa with gruyere annealed to the inside, and masala-stuffed chicken wings napped with mango sauce are some of the novel notions that pervade the menu at Sona via chef Hari Nayak. The elegant interior breaks some barriers, too, doubling as a gallery displaying the work of Indian artists. And a tribute to Floyd Cardoz places a crisp-skinned fish filet in an orange curry broth flavored with manila clams.

A hand with a spoon reaches into an open deep green leaf cradling a serving of rice casserole.
Sona’s chicken biryani arrives in a leaf.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

13. Hillside Dosa Hutt

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258-15 Hillside Avenue
Queens, NY 11004
(718) 414-4780

This spot near the eastern border of Queens founded in 2014 in an area dotted with Indian restaurants specializes in the vegetarian recipes of South India. Included are idly in multiple guises, rava and masala dosas, uttapams, and the savory doughnuts called vadai. Plenty of snacks available, if you just want to dash in for a small bite in the airy and extensively windowed space. And yes that is ketchup in the condiment slot on the tray.

A round brown pastry, a white saucer shaped pastry, a soup in a cup, and green and red sauces, most in compartments.
Vada, idly, sambar, and two chutneys...snack away!
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

14. GupShup

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Read Review |
115 E 18th St
New York, NY 10003
(212) 518-7313
Visit Website

Meaning something like “idle talk,” GupShup took the Flatiron by storm when it first appeared late in 2018, slinging opulent dishes in their elaborate platings, along with strong cocktails and a decor at turns playful and intentionally garish. Like other places intent on delivering Indian food into the realm of fine dining, it sharpened and freshened its flavors in stylish offerings, sometimes with international references, like smoked salmon puchkas and jackfruit tacos, and sometimes featuring regional specialties such as a Kerala beef fry.

A stuffed bone marrow in the foreground with flatbreads in the background.
Roasted bone marrow with five-spice naan.
Louise Palmberg/Eater NY

15. Pariwaar Delights

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827 Newark Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07306
(201) 217-1800
Visit Website

Founded two years ago by the husband-and-wife team of Mohammed Al Ghulam and Hina Afreen, Pariwaar Delights features an elegant dining room and menu that specializes in the cuisine of Hyderabad. Included are battered and stuffed green chiles, goat biryani, chicken Chettinad, and the street staple chicken majestic, wonderfully coating fried tidbits in a thick sauce of buttermilk and garlic.

A heap of breaded chicken tidbits smothered in yellow sauce.
Chicken majestic — Hyderabad street food.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

16. Mithaas

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795 Newark Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07306
(201) 659-8700
Visit Website

Mithaas is something of an anchor of Jersey City’s India Square: Smack dab in the middle, it has a large dining room that serves a broad range of South Indian vegetarian specialties, including all-in meals on round metal trays called thalis, sometimes as specials associated with particular states or cities. It also offers cases of eye-appealing sweets — halwas, barfis, and such — in pastel shades sometimes decorated with edible silver foil. Easily accessible on the PATH train.

The special thali at Mithaas comes on a metal tray
A Mithaas thali includes apps and sweets.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

17. Ambo

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55C E 8th St
New York, NY 10003
(646) 476-4214
Visit Website

This fast-casual concept just off the NYU campus is lots of fun as a lunch or dinner option. Pick one of three main ingredients — paneer, chicken, or Indian falafel — and then select a series of bases, sauces, and sides to go with it (multiple sauces can be chosen). The result can be highly spiced or bland, vegetarian or not, but there seem to be no missteps among the complex combinations that can be assembled.

A tray with orange squash, white dilled yogurt, split peas, etc.
A typical meal combination as chosen by the diner at Ambo.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

18. Veeray da Dhaba

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222 1st Avenue
New York, NY 10009
(212) 777-1420
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Channeling the roadside shacks of Mumbai that serve regional specialties, this informal cafe helmed by Sonny Solomon, Hemant Mathur, and Binder Saini offers a good selection of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes, some specialties drenched in ghee like tadka dal and butter chicken — the latter a dish that has become as popular in the States as it was back in India. In addition, the kitchen offers a dinner box in the tiffin tradition with main dish, vegetable curry that varies daily, dal, rice, and a hot naan, making it a good deal and a very filling meal.

A plastic tray with three dishes, rice, and a folded naan.
Butter chicken tiffin, perfect carryout food.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

19. Dhamaka

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119 Delancey St
New York, NY 10002
(212) 204-8616
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This wildly popular Essex Crossing restaurant on the Lower East Side comes via the Pandya-Mazumdar team of Adda and now Rowdy Rooster fame, adding a touch of elegance and modernity to Indian dining, and featuring cooking several degrees closer to what you might find in India in terms of the pungency of flavors. Though the menu is meant to reflect home cooking, it feels experimental at times; don't miss the goat neck biryani or Bengali spice-coated eggplant

Several dishes of food lined up on a wooden table with a colorful bench in the background
An assortment of Dhamka dishes.
Adam Friedlander/Eater NY

20. Masti

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184 Havemeyer St
Brooklyn, NY 11211
(718) 599-1516
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Tucked away in a corner of Williamsburg near the Williamsburg Bridge, Masti is a restaurant that specializes in Anglo-Indian Balti cooking, while also offering lots of northern and southern Indian fare, including a dish or two from West Bengal. Koshi mangsho is a mustard-laced goat curry from Kolkata, while the Bricklane curry, like the name suggests, is a London-style dish with a choice of main ingredients and an adjustable level of heat. The team behind the food is wife and husband Linda Mahkovec and Ruhel Amin, along with executive chef Abdul Jabber.

An oblong white bowl bobbing with orange squash in a reddish-orange sauce flecked with spices.
Pumpkin paanch pooran at Masti.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

21. Indika House

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943 Broadway
Brooklyn, NY 11206
(718) 484-3600

Located in a corner of Bushwick beneath the clattering elevated tracks, Indika House is decorated with colorful floor-to-ceiling murals of flowers, elephants, the Taj Mahal, and other Indian landmarks. The menu is broad ranging, from commonplace dishes like butter chicken and lamb curry, to rarer regional viands like chicken gassi, a recipe from Mangalore laced with coconut milk and tamarind, making for a haunting sweetness.

A chicken curry in a metal bowl with a yellowish cast.
Chicken gassi at Indika House.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

22. Dosa Royale

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258 Dekalb Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11205
(718) 576-3800
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Originally from Chennai, chef and owner Thiru Rajamani worked on cruise ships and in Italian kitchens before launching this restaurant focusing foremost on the food of South India. Sure, there are dosas aplenty, including the semolina-based rava dosa, but also find a vigorous curry selection not restricting itself to vegetarianism. Find therein Kashmiri lamb kolumbu and fiery Chettinad chicken from Tamil Nadu. A particularly good selection of flavored rice dishes is provided.

A rolled pancake laid across a formally dressed round table.
The masala dosa at Dosa Royale.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

23. Indian Table

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234 Court St
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(347) 689-3882
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Helmed by chef Eric McCarthy, who was born in Goa, Indian Table is a sleek and recently revamped restaurant that specializes in the fare of the small seaside state, though the menu is far more broad ranging. Of the Goan dishes, a transformed version of Portuguese caldo verde and a shrimp curry laced with cumin and tart purple mangosteen stand out. As at Adda, goat biryani is rendered in Lucknow fashion with a crust on the top sealing in its flavors — it’s a must order.

Three bowls of curry, one pie with top pulled back, and rice here and there.
An assortment of dishes from Indian Table.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

1. Clove

1592 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10031
Four spinach fritters on a white plate.
Sahina fritters
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Located directly across the street from the ornate entrance gates of City University, this newer and flashier cousin of Fort George old timer Kismat (founded 1981) has been around seven years. Under chef Anil Ahmed, the menu explores regional cuisines, as well as Americanized manifestations of classic Indian dishes. In the former category is sahina, fritters of taro leaves also popular in Trinidad. There’s even a hamburger on the menu.

1592 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10031

2. Doaba Deli

945 Columbus Ave, New York, NY 10025
A white tray with four vegetarian dishes in shades of green and reddish brown with a bowl of rice on the side.
Here’s your lunch! from Doaba Deli.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Looking for truck stop fare? This worn-down, but much loved, double-storefront deli is named after a region of the Punjab, and was opened by Inderjit Singh over a decade ago. The steam table displays all that’s available that day, with a preponderance of vegetarian dishes, though chicken and the occasional goat or lamb curry are also available. Add tandoori chicken to the menu and you have a beguiling number of choices, but not too many.

945 Columbus Ave
New York, NY 10025

3. Indian Accent

123 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019
Read Review |
Two wafers with a filling between them, garnished with foie gras and an amaranth leaf.
Foie gras, Indian style, at Indian Accent.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Located in Le Parker Meridien Hotel, this luxurious restaurant is a branch of an original in New Delhi, and when it arrived in 2016, it brought a renewed sense of excitement for Indian cuisine in a fine-dining setting — which doesn’t mean it wasn’t any fun. Sometimes using local ingredients like pastrami, the place filled its menu with small and surprising dishes that deployed things like foie gras and black truffles. The dishes are often named as strings of ingredients (for example: “pork dumplings, broth, nettle oil, crispy black rice”), making them easier to order.

123 W 56th St
New York, NY 10019

4. Patiala Indian Grill

371 W 34th St, New York, NY 10001
A white plastic tray with compartments filled with red, green, and yellow dishes, with wadded flatbread and serving of rice.
Chicken tikka masala at Patiala.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This modest spot near Penn Station, named after the fourth largest city in India’s Punjab and owned by I. Srinivas Gangula, delivers affordable and magnificent meals that consist of a main course, a couple of sides, bread, and rice — more than the average diner can eat. The chicken tikka masala is especially good, swimming in enough creamy sauce to drench both rice and bread. Snacks available, too, from a limited menu that changes daily.

371 W 34th St
New York, NY 10001

5. Temple Canteen

09 Holly Ave No 143, Queens, NY 11355
The monster paper dosa at Temple Canteen is enough for two
The immense paper dosa, with chutneys and sambar.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Founded in 1993 and located in the basement of Flushing’s Ganesh temple, this place serves a strictly vegetarian menu of South Indian dishes, running to multiple varieties of dosa, plus uttapam with a choice of batter inclusions, and idly in several formats. There are vegetable curries and rice casseroles, too, in a family friendly setting. Remove your shoes to visit the Hindu temple upstairs, where all are welcome.

09 Holly Ave No 143
Queens, NY 11355

6. Jackson Diner

37-47 74th Street, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
Several receptacles filled with curries in the front window of Jackson Diner
Pre-pandemic, Jackson Diner was famous for its all-you-can-eat buffet.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Jackson Diner has been one of the city’s most famous Indian restaurants almost since it opened in 1980 by Manjit Singh in a space previously occupied by a diner of the same name. It sought to serve the needs of a wide variety of customers, vegetarian and not, who visited Jackson Heights’ Indian shopping district. Having introduced many New Yorkers to Indian fare for the first time, it moved down the block to much bigger digs. Customers order off a menu of mainly northern Indian specialties.

37-47 74th Street
Jackson Heights, NY 11372

7. Adda

31-31 Thomson Ave, Queens, NY 11101
Read Review |
Several colorful Indian dishes seen from above.
An assortment of Indian dishes from Adda.
Gary He/Eater NY

This Long Island City canteen from Roni Mazumdar and Chintan Pandya channels the food of Mumbai, West Bengal, and other northern locales — not as it's usually cooked, but as it’s prepared in home settings. When the place, wall papered with newsprint, appeared nearly four years ago it caused a sensation, not only through the pungency of its freshly ground spices, but the novelty of many dishes. The pastry-topped Lucknowi biryani alone should be enough to induce any diner to go. The space will become more takeout focused as Mazumdar and Pandya find another spot to expand Adda.

31-31 Thomson Ave
Queens, NY 11101

8. Cardamom

43-45 43rd street, Queens Blvd, Queens, NY 11104
Two bowls of curry, one brown and one yellow, the yellow one with shrimp in it.
Goat xacutti and shrimp caldin at Cardamom.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Located on a side street in Sunnyside, this charming spot specializes in the food of the former Portuguese colony of Goa, which has its own distinct cuisine that sometimes features ingredients like red wine and pork. But the menu via chef Alwyn Gudhino is more broad ranging than that, so don’t despair of seeing some of your pan-national Indian favorites on the bill of fare.

43-45 43rd street, Queens Blvd
Queens, NY 11104

9. Vatan

409 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10016
A small structure, a balcony, and a tree are all part of the landscape inside the restaurant.
Eat in an Indian village at Vatan.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

A single multi-course, all-you-can-eat, vegetarian (and kosher) Gujarati meal is the focus of Vatan, a Murray Hill fixture for decades owned by Prashant Shah. To make the meal more enjoyable, the entire premises is made to look like an Indian Village where seating is inside a small building, on a balcony, or beneath a spreading banyan tree. Pace yourself, so as to have an appetite when you reach the dessert of thickened yogurt flavored with saffron called shrikhand.

409 3rd Ave
New York, NY 10016

10. Sahib

104 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016
Read Review |
Four dishes in various shades in pans with handles.
An assortment of dishes from Curry Hill’s Sahib.
Liz Barclay/Eater NY

Sahib travels all over northern India to collect recipes — there are four kinds of bone-in goat curry alone, including one from Kashmir and another from Kolkata — which is a good measure of the seriousness of an Indian restaurant. This is one of a handful of Hemant Mathur restaurants in Manhattan, and the vegetarian dishes here keep pace with the meat-bearing ones, including paneer kali murch (cheese in a creamy black pepper sauce) and achari bindi (okra in a sauce sharply flavored with Indian pickles). For takeout, this food travels exceedingly well.

104 Lexington Ave
New York, NY 10016

11. Saravanaa Bhavan

81 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10016
A metal tray with compartments containing a white vegetable curry and two red flatbreads.
Adai aviyal.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This massive international restaurant chain founded in 1981 by P. Rajagopal now boasts a pair of branches in Manhattan (the other is on the Upper West Side). The menu focuses on the strictly vegetarian dishes of South India, and goes way further than the usual dosas and idlys. Examples are adai aviyal, a Keralan dish that features multiple vegetables in a sauce of yogurt and coconut milk, accompanied by a pair of red flatbreads; and bisibelabath, a veggie-studded rice casserole from Karnataka.

81 Lexington Ave
New York, NY 10016

12. Sona

36 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003
A hand with a spoon reaches into an open deep green leaf cradling a serving of rice casserole.
Sona’s chicken biryani arrives in a leaf.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

A red snapper ceviche in pink coconut milk, cone-shaped dosa with gruyere annealed to the inside, and masala-stuffed chicken wings napped with mango sauce are some of the novel notions that pervade the menu at Sona via chef Hari Nayak. The elegant interior breaks some barriers, too, doubling as a gallery displaying the work of Indian artists. And a tribute to Floyd Cardoz places a crisp-skinned fish filet in an orange curry broth flavored with manila clams.

36 E 20th St
New York, NY 10003

13. Hillside Dosa Hutt

258-15 Hillside Avenue, Queens, NY 11004
A round brown pastry, a white saucer shaped pastry, a soup in a cup, and green and red sauces, most in compartments.
Vada, idly, sambar, and two chutneys...snack away!
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This spot near the eastern border of Queens founded in 2014 in an area dotted with Indian restaurants specializes in the vegetarian recipes of South India. Included are idly in multiple guises, rava and masala dosas, uttapams, and the savory doughnuts called vadai. Plenty of snacks available, if you just want to dash in for a small bite in the airy and extensively windowed space. And yes that is ketchup in the condiment slot on the tray.

258-15 Hillside Avenue
Queens, NY 11004

14. GupShup

115 E 18th St, New York, NY 10003
Read Review |
A stuffed bone marrow in the foreground with flatbreads in the background.
Roasted bone marrow with five-spice naan.
Louise Palmberg/Eater NY

Meaning something like “idle talk,” GupShup took the Flatiron by storm when it first appeared late in 2018, slinging opulent dishes in their elaborate platings, along with strong cocktails and a decor at turns playful and intentionally garish. Like other places intent on delivering Indian food into the realm of fine dining, it sharpened and freshened its flavors in stylish offerings, sometimes with international references, like smoked salmon puchkas and jackfruit tacos, and sometimes featuring regional specialties such as a Kerala beef fry.

115 E 18th St
New York, NY 10003

15. Pariwaar Delights

827 Newark Ave, Jersey City, NJ 07306
A heap of breaded chicken tidbits smothered in yellow sauce.
Chicken majestic — Hyderabad street food.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Founded two years ago by the husband-and-wife team of Mohammed Al Ghulam and Hina Afreen, Pariwaar Delights features an elegant dining room and menu that specializes in the cuisine of Hyderabad. Included are battered and stuffed green chiles, goat biryani, chicken Chettinad, and the street staple chicken majestic, wonderfully coating fried tidbits in a thick sauce of buttermilk and garlic.

827 Newark Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07306

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16. Mithaas

795 Newark Ave, Jersey City, NJ 07306
The special thali at Mithaas comes on a metal tray
A Mithaas thali includes apps and sweets.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Mithaas is something of an anchor of Jersey City’s India Square: Smack dab in the middle, it has a large dining room that serves a broad range of South Indian vegetarian specialties, including all-in meals on round metal trays called thalis, sometimes as specials associated with particular states or cities. It also offers cases of eye-appealing sweets — halwas, barfis, and such — in pastel shades sometimes decorated with edible silver foil. Easily accessible on the PATH train.

795 Newark Ave
Jersey City, NJ 07306

17. Ambo

55C E 8th St, New York, NY 10003
A tray with orange squash, white dilled yogurt, split peas, etc.
A typical meal combination as chosen by the diner at Ambo.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This fast-casual concept just off the NYU campus is lots of fun as a lunch or dinner option. Pick one of three main ingredients — paneer, chicken, or Indian falafel — and then select a series of bases, sauces, and sides to go with it (multiple sauces can be chosen). The result can be highly spiced or bland, vegetarian or not, but there seem to be no missteps among the complex combinations that can be assembled.

55C E 8th St
New York, NY 10003

18. Veeray da Dhaba

222 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10009
A plastic tray with three dishes, rice, and a folded naan.
Butter chicken tiffin, perfect carryout food.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Channeling the roadside shacks of Mumbai that serve regional specialties, this informal cafe helmed by Sonny Solomon, Hemant Mathur, and Binder Saini offers a good selection of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes, some specialties drenched in ghee like tadka dal and butter chicken — the latter a dish that has become as popular in the States as it was back in India. In addition, the kitchen offers a dinner box in the tiffin tradition with main dish, vegetable curry that varies daily, dal, rice, and a hot naan, making it a good deal and a very filling meal.

222 1st Avenue
New York, NY 10009

19. Dhamaka

119 Delancey St, New York, NY 10002
Several dishes of food lined up on a wooden table with a colorful bench in the background
An assortment of Dhamka dishes.
Adam Friedlander/Eater NY

This wildly popular Essex Crossing restaurant on the Lower East Side comes via the Pandya-Mazumdar team of Adda and now Rowdy Rooster fame, adding a touch of elegance and modernity to Indian dining, and featuring cooking several degrees closer to what you might find in India in terms of the pungency of flavors. Though the menu is meant to reflect home cooking, it feels experimental at times; don't miss the goat neck biryani or Bengali spice-coated eggplant

119 Delancey St
New York, NY 10002

20. Masti

184 Havemeyer St, Brooklyn, NY 11211
An oblong white bowl bobbing with orange squash in a reddish-orange sauce flecked with spices.
Pumpkin paanch pooran at Masti.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Tucked away in a corner of Williamsburg near the Williamsburg Bridge, Masti is a restaurant that specializes in Anglo-Indian Balti cooking, while also offering lots of northern and southern Indian fare, including a dish or two from West Bengal. Koshi mangsho is a mustard-laced goat curry from Kolkata, while the Bricklane curry, like the name suggests, is a London-style dish with a choice of main ingredients and an adjustable level of heat. The team behind the food is wife and husband Linda Mahkovec and Ruhel Amin, along with executive chef Abdul Jabber.

184 Havemeyer St
Brooklyn, NY 11211

21. Indika House

943 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11206
A chicken curry in a metal bowl with a yellowish cast.
Chicken gassi at Indika House.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Located in a corner of Bushwick beneath the clattering elevated tracks, Indika House is decorated with colorful floor-to-ceiling murals of flowers, elephants, the Taj Mahal, and other Indian landmarks. The menu is broad ranging, from commonplace dishes like butter chicken and lamb curry, to rarer regional viands like chicken gassi, a recipe from Mangalore laced with coconut milk and tamarind, making for a haunting sweetness.

943 Broadway
Brooklyn, NY 11206

22. Dosa Royale

258 Dekalb Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11205