Do People Actually Enjoy Paying More for Things???

Curry Dream

I walked by Curry Dream Indian Buffet on 39th btw. 5+6th the other day, and noticed something interesting:  it was kind of packed.  I guess this wouldn’t be such a huge surprise, unless you knew a little bit about Curry Dream. I first wrote about this place in March of 2007, back when it was still one of the only under $10 Indian buffets in Midtown (they’ve since raised their prices.)  It was ok for the price, but nothing I would have traveled far out of my way for.  One commenter wrote that the restaurant might be a little dirty (roaches were mentioned, but this is all heresay).  Despite the comments, the restaurant still quoted Midtown Lunch (sort of) in their newspaper ad.  Very exciting stuff.

Needless to say, I haven’t been back since- and most of the time the place seemed fairly empty… that is until last week.  I walked by during lunch and it was pretty hopping, despite the fact that they raised the price of the buffet at the beginning of the year.  This could mean a few things: A) I’m on crack.  The place was always crowded, I just didn’t notice.  B) It has gotten a lot better since I first visited a year and a half ago.  Or C) people love paying more for things.  Could it be that a higher price buffet gives people a greater sense of security that their food is clean?  What do you think?  Has anybody been lately?


  • It looks like they cleaned up the place. I can’t speak for the recent food quality (have not been there in quite some time), but a cleaner establishment does matter to a lot of people. Hate to break it to ya Zach, but not everyone has a hard-and-fast $10-or-less Rule, and for many people a dollar or two difference doesn’t really matter (especially at a buffet). On the other hand, a clean and attractive decor may well attract more customers, esp. because $11-12 is still cheap for a buffet in the middle of NYC.

  • Also, with prices going up everywhere, an $11 buffet now is probably a better deal than a $10 buffet over a year ago.

  • I went there last week… wanted to see if the buffet was good… and it sucked… The Chicken Tikka Masala tray was empty… i was there for about 20-30 minutes and it was empty the whole time… so i didnt get to try it, and even then i probably wouldnt have cared since it looked watery… the goat curry was ok… everything was very watery… and very mild… not the robust, spicy flavors id expect from indian food, but it kind of dawned on me after that meal that if i want good stuff i should go to a sitdown place??? I dunno, it was highly disappointing… i just didnt want to walk so far to 8th ave for spice fusion… live and learn people.

  • I’ve never eaten at the restaurant, but I have gotten takeout from there, and I’ve always preferred Curry Dream to Spice Fusion. They are way less stingy with the ingredients (paneer, meat, etc.) and they usually give you a little gulab jamun for dessert. I always felt the extra dollar or so was worth it.

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