Monday, March 1, 2010

Eats of Stamford: Navaratna

It's never a good sign when you are the only patron in a restaurant when you walk in, and still the only person there when you walk out. To Navaratna's credit, it's definitely not the food keeping people away.

Navaratna is in the old home of Mona Lisa's, on Atlantic Street between Mojito's and Dunkin' Donuts, and they serve vegetarian Indian food. As I've ranted before, the west side of Atlantic Street suffers due to its proximity to, well, the east side of Atlantic Street, a long gray-and-brown wall of nothingness. It has to be hard to establish a foothold in a city already teeming with restaurants when your location doesn't get much foot traffic.

As for Navaratna itself, the interior is rather nondescript, and the only thing vaguely Indian is a painting hanging on the wall. I like the exposed brick, but the other Indian restaurants in town put Navaratna's decor to shame.

Now for the food. I had the Mirchi Ka Salan, or "authentic hydrabadi cashew and tamarind and southern spices." I didn't see any cashews and I would've liked a warning that the big peppers still had their stems attached, but overall, it was a very tasty dish. It had a warm spice to it along with a subtle sweetness from the tamarind.

I would've liked some kind of lunch special, but they just have one menu, so prices that are fine for dinner range a little high for lunch, especially when it comes to appetizers and side dishes.

Overall, I'd like to try Navaratna again. I just hope they're around long enough for me to make a return trip.


Chris Preovolos said...

The couple of times I've been in, its been slow, but there were people inside for lunch.

Both times it appeared to be Indians/Indian Americans who work in the offices downtown.

I enjoyed the dosas and the fried cauliflower dish.


Whitemist said...

It was not too slow when I went in a few weeks ago and the food was delightful. Always ready to try something new!