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Cincinnati Bites
Lamb Rogan Josh from Dusmesh Indian Restaurant

Posted Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Finally. That was our reaction when we passed the new sign posted outside the building west of Silverton Cafe. An Indian restaurant was now available to the Kenwood/Silverton/Deer Park masses. The spot along Montgomery Road had long been the site of a Chinese restaurant, followed by a two-year stint as El Establo, followed by the very short-lived Cincy Burger, with its awful, unreadable stenciled sign. Now there would be something with the potential for true staying power.

Finally.

Delhi Palace is the name of the new Indian restaurant, which will give some Cincinnatians pause to consider its correct pronunciation (hint: it ain't "DELL-high"). The Palace opened on April 1st, with a solid menu, obligatory lunch buffet and a surprisingly, refreshingly simple and easy to navigate website. I mean, holy chutney, here's a restaurant website that actually contains a menu, address, phone number and hours of operation! Who would have thought it possible?

We arrived one recent weekend evening, eagerly greeted by the host. The configuration of the place hadn't changed much, but all the booths were new and the purple tablecloths were securely protected under a top layer of opaque Plexiglass. After all, Indian food can get a little messy, what with all the saucy dishes and heaping mounds of Basmati rice tumbling about.

The usual Northern Indian suspects can be found here, including nearly a dozen varieties of Naan cooked in a true tandoor oven that they've barely broken in. There are an abundance of ricey biryani dishes; lamb, chicken and goat curries; cheesy paneer; spinachy saag; spicy vindaloo; and sizzling chicken tikka.

Papardam
Complimentary Papardam

Our host presented us with a complimentary side of papardam, flat, cumin-spiced lentil wafers along with a sampling of mint, hot pepper and tamarind sauce. Free items are a popular attraction at new restaurants and the practice usually disappears as they become more established. Still, it was a pleasant surprise.

My girlfriend ordered the Malai Kofta: mini vegetable balls simmered in a creamy onion and tomato sauce. I opted for my usual: lamb vindaloo. Spice levels at Delhi Palace are on a scale of 1-6, and we each chose a level four.

The Palace began to fill up with patrons, at least partially, and given the fact that they'd only been open a few days, we expected a long wait for our food. However, it wasn't unusually so --perhaps 15 minutes. Our host apologized for the wait, though there was no reason to.

The food arrived in the familiar metal, elliptical serving dishes. The larger platter of Basmati rice was simply decorated with a single, prominent clove.

Malai Kofta
Malai Kofta
Lamb Vindaloo
Lamb Vindaloo

I find it interesting that every single Indian restaurant in town seems to offer a slightly different take on vindaloo. Delhi Palace's version is rich, complex and tomatoey, with delicate notes of cinnamon and cumin. The four spice level was still plenty spicy, more so than my girlfriend's dish, leaving a lingering tingle on the lips. The hunks of lamb and potato were pleasingly tender atop the small bed of fluffy rice I'd doled out for myself.

My girlfriend enjoyed the sheer number of diminutive vegetable balls in her dish; other Indian restaurants seem more conservative in their ball volume, offering just a couple larger balls floating in a whole lot of sauce. And, of course, she especially liked how her balls smelled (how can you not get immature about ball descriptions?).

Overall, Delhi Palace seems off to a promising start. They offer all the hits most Indian food fans love at competitive prices and requisite heaps of deliciousness.

Delhi Palace on Urbanspoon
Delhi Palace

Price: Moderately Expensive ($11 - $16 per person)
Service: Good
Rating: 3.03.0 stars






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Ratings Legend
four stars = Outstanding
three stars = Good
two stars = Fair
one star = Poor
  • From Tom about Delhi Palace:
    Agree with your take on this place. Nice variety on the buffet, owners aim to please, great location. Was quite full for lunch on our visit. Hoping this one is a keeper!
    posted: Fri., Apr 18th, 2014 @ 10:44 PM
  • From Cincinnati Bites about Elephant Walk Injera & Curry House:
    Great advice, Rhapsody. Thanks for the education!
    posted: Sun., Apr 6th, 2014 @ 7:58 PM
  • From Rhapsody about Elephant Walk Injera & Curry House:
    Teff is gluten free, however most injera in this country also has wheat flour and sometimes other flours, such as barley, which are not gluten free. You should ask any restaurant if they have "teff only" injera if you have a gluten sensitivity.
    posted: Sun., Apr 6th, 2014 @ 8:21 AM
  • From Don Wellmeier II about Marion's Piazza:
    I'm a die-hard Cassano's fan. I have lived out of the Dayton area for over 30 years but I make sure to eat as much Cassano's as I can when I'm in town. Love the salted crust and it tastes just as I remember it.
    posted: Sun., Jan 12th, 2014 @ 1:06 PM
  • From Gary about Marion's Piazza:
    Since Casannos started using conveyor ovens they are not near as good as the old hearth oven baked pizzas. I like Marions the best.
    posted: Mon., Jan 6th, 2014 @ 1:55 PM
  • From Jennifer about Chuy's:
    We live about 10 minutes from the Taqueria Mercado location in Fairfield but for some reason find that we crave the food at Taqueria Maya even more so we often make the drive to Fields Ertel.
    posted: Fri., Jan 3rd, 2014 @ 3:09 PM
  • From Tina about Taste of Belgium Bistro:
    Hi: Just a heads up that someone swiped your photo above and posted it to imgur.com. I'm assuming this was done without your permission. You can find the post here: http://imgur.com/gallery/YvzfnZ4
    posted: Fri., Dec 6th, 2013 @ 2:30 PM
  • From Chef Michael Belanger about Barrio Tequileria:
    I did two events using Barrio a Match.com/Dishcrawl and a Taco Crawl they were great and all of the crawlers gave them excellent reviews, which were well deserved
    posted: Fri., Jul 12th, 2013 @ 11:11 AM
  • From Beth about Taco Casa:
    Thanks for the review on Taco Casa. Taco Casa started in Cincinnati 45 years ago by Polly Laffoon, a local Cincinnati gal whom spent 2 years in Texas while her husband served in the military. She came back to Cincinnati and wanted to open a Mexican Restaurant but realized that she would have to alter the recipes to be more attractive to Midwesterners. Back in those days spicey food was not a "HOT" item. She ingeniously invented the Taco Salad, the Tuna Boat Supreme and the Burrito Boat. A happy combination of midwestern cooking with a mexican flair. Which, no matter what you call it Mexican, CincyMex, AmericanMex it still taste incredibly good even 45 years later. ( Maybe we should call it MidWesternMex?) To this day, taco meat, ranch dressing, taco sauces and salsas are STILL 100% made in house with the original recipe. Taco Casa Owners
    posted: Wed., May 15th, 2013 @ 2:18 PM
  • From Ginna about Bobby's Burger Palace:
    Thanks!
    posted: Sat., Apr 20th, 2013 @ 2:08 PM
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