Last week, Hot Clay Oven finally opened on 3rd Ave. (btw 44th+45th) in Midtown East. You probably already know the drill for the “Indian Chipotle“: you choose whether you want a wrap, naan wrap, rice bowl, or salad, and get to pick from a menu of proteins, toppings, and sauces. So, how does the newest location stack up?
Archive for 'Indian'
Hot Clay Oven, otherwise known as the Indian Chipotle, is now open on 3rd Ave. (btw 44th+45th), and they’re offering 50% off all entrees, plus unlimited toppings, for a limited time. The Indian fusion spot already has a location downtown, and offers a menu of wraps, rice, and salad bowls with a number of proteins, sauces, and toppings to choose from. We’ll have a review soon, but early adopters let us know what you think. (Thanks to Lunch’er James for the tip!)
Midtown loves its kati rolls. Amongst Indian food, few other dishes than the stalwart samosa, popular pakora, and killer kati rolls stand in the street-food pantheon. These things are the best eat-and-walk chow you can get on the subcontinent, I assert. Problem is, the southern chunk of midtown has been fairly kati roll-free. Serendipitously, Seamless’ “hey guys, look what’s new!” blast came out the other day showing a new spot that we hadn’t yet heard of: The Kati House (on 36th btw. 8+9th). On an otherwise unremarkable block housing an NYPD motor pool and generic dragon Chinese, could this be an addition to the hole-in-the-wall Indo-Pakistani in the area?
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I’d walked past Nirvana (Lex btw. 39th+40th) tons of times on the way to my office, but it never struck me as the type of place that would do take-out, let along the type of place that would have take-out deals for under $10. Then one day I happened upon a menu and discovered that, indeed, Nirvana offers several lunch deals at the ML price level.
As with most other Indian restaurants, the lunches at Nirvana included a choice of meat with a vegetable, rice, naan, and raita. I ordered the lamb curry for $8.95, but they also have seafood ($9.95), chicken curry ($8.95), vegetable curry ($7.95), and tandoori chicken ($7.95). Even better, you get 10% off when you order online.
If you’re looking for Indian food on a Midtown Lunch budget, there are plenty of options available, ranging from carts to steam tables. But at Amma (51st St. between 2nd Ave. and 3rd Ave.), you can get something else: sit-down restaurant quality takeout for under $10.
I walked into Amma not knowing what to expect, and stumbled into a small, quiet dining room. I was quickly brought back, past a wall-sized wine rack, to the servers’ station where I could place my to-go order. Yes, this is a restaurant where entrees run anywhere from $15 to $30, but from 12 to 3pm, Amma offers to-go ‘lunch boxes’ that range in price from $9 to $12.
It’s time for the 2012 Midtown Lunch Readers’ Poll. Your nominations are in, and between now and the end of the year we’ll be asking all of you to vote for the best Midtown Lunches in a whole range of categories. You can only vote once per category (so choose wisely), and official results will be posted after the new year.
Last year, the Kati Roll craze was in full swing, and Biriyani Cart and Kati Roll Company took top honors in our Best Midtown Kati Roll 2011 Readers’ Poll. This year, the ever-popular kati rolls are still saturating Midtown, but is that the best Indian food there is in Midtown? And in addition to our classic, cheap restaurants and carts like Minar (who won this category in 2010), Joy Curry & Tandoor, and Bombay Fast Food… a new truck is on the scene: Mausam Curry & Bites, and a new restaurant: Desi Shack. Meanwhile, Joy and Kati Roll have expanded into new Midtown locations. With all the important ML criteria of taste, portion, authenticity, and price… what will you choose?
- Biriyani Cart
- Bombay Fast Food
- Desi Shack
- Joy Curry & Tandoor
- Kati Roll Company
- Mausam Curry & Bites
Vote for your favorite after the jump…
When it gets hot outside, I get in the mood for really hot, spicy curry. It might sound counterintuitive that eating spicy food cools you off. For all I know, it might even be a myth. I just use it as an excuse to eat more peppers. So when I passed by Curry Dreams (39th btw. 5th + 6th) where Zach tried back in 2008 when it was Curry Dream, and I saw that they had a $4.95 lunch box special, I thought I’d give it a shot. I mean, you can’t beat $4.95 for a Midtown lunch, right?
I’m not sure if Midtown needs another Chipotle inspired restaurant but here you go. Hot Clay Oven, an Indian fusion restaurant which “>started off with a downtown location, has taken over what was the last of the Hello Pasta locations on 3rd Ave btw 44th and 45th St. Here’s a look at the menu but basically you get a choice of rice, salad or naan then you add your protein, toppings and dressing. This whole Indian food with the Chipotle way of serving food isn’t new to Midtown. Desi Shack on Lexington and 39th St has already been doing it since last October but I wasn’t a fan of their food. And from what Andrea wrote, Hot Clay Oven may just turn out to be a solid lunch spot. More than anything though we hope that like their downtown location, they will open their doors on the first day with some free food!
It’s been several years since we’ve talked at all about Ustav. Zach pretty much covered all the bases when he originally reviewed the upscale Indian joint in 2007, focusing on their $7.95 or $9.95 take out lunch that costs $18.95 if you eat in their dining room. A lot has happened since 2007, not the least of which was some crazy financial turmoil, so it’s surprising to me that Utsav’s lunch deal remains the same both in price and in quality as when Zach originally reviewed it. And, even more surprising, I hardly hear people talking about this place, yet it is still really great Indian food.
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While walking on 50th street between 6th and 7th avenues, I couldn’t help but stop at the Desi Food Truck, because according to a menu sign taped to the window haleem, the soup Clay liked so much last year and an Indian rarity in New York, has returned! Also advertised on the window was Puri Bhaji. Sounds like lunch to me…