By Kathryne Grisim (@foodmuser)
Thirty years ago, prior to my marriage, I lived downtown in the Holiday Towers. Often times on a warm evening while I sat out on my balcony, I would get a beautiful waft of mellow spices. East India Company (349 York Avenue) was responsible for the exotic aromas. Recently I stayed next door to my old apartment for a conference/retreat and followed my nose back to East India Company.
The restaurant is narrow but deep and I was surprised when I went to the buffet just how many people were there for lunch. I would imagine the convenience of grabbing a quick and easy meal was what attracted them as well. I had a small window for lunch and so not having to wait to have my order taken or the food prepared meant that I was eating within five minutes of arrival.
I do not profess to have an expansive knowledge of Indian food so I made very sure of noting the name of every dish that I was tempted to sample. But, by the time I had eaten, walked back to the hotel and wrote everything down, I had a few memory gaps.
I do know that I selected a Pakora (a cauliflower and potato packet) and enjoyed the unusual taste more than the vegetable Samosa. I also loved the bright green Palak Paneer: a creamed spinach made gooey with homemade cheese; so too, the Bhurta of smashed eggplant and peas. I appreciated their roasted chicken which had a pink flesh from the permeation of spices. My favourite of this and most Indian dinners was the butter chicken (Murgh Makhan), wondering how they manage to retain the tenderness without the dish tasting stewed.
East India Company makes eating vegetarian, vegan or gluten-free very easy indeed and is likely another reason why the restaurant is so popular. The operation was overseen by a handsome gentleman in a white suit, whom I suspected was the owner. He was too busy that day for me to inquire.
East India Company has dine in, take out and catering menus available.
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