Thursday, April 24, 2008

Vik's Chaat Corner



My afternoon with Kirkleton and Krazo came to a close after Blue Bottle and I BARTed back to the East Bay. About two hours after that, we were headed to Vik's Chaat Corner in Berkeley. I frequented five (FIVE!) fabulous eateries in one day. Trips don't become better than that.

Vik's equals happy. I can't believe I live 400 miles from this place. If my company was located in Berkeley, I would eat lunch here every day. This place came with quite a bit of hype and I'd say it lived up to it.

I was a little dazed by the frenetic activity and myriad of menu items. The sweets case alone was distracting enough.

The restaurant is literally a warehouse with an industrial kitchen in it. The rest is seating. Order food, find a table, grab your napkins and sporks (yes, sporks...), and give great thanks that this place exists. Chaat originated as a roadside snack, so one person can order 1 or 2 dishes for their meal. The dishes are larger than tapas, smaller than a meal.

Since there were six of us, we ordered 1-2 dishes each and tried a little of everything. My first choice was the aloo tikki cholle, which are potato patties stuffed with green peas and covered with chickpea curry. Imagine potato pancakes with an incredibly flavorful curry with perfectly-cooked chickpeas ladled on top.

The second was lamb baida roti, spiced ground lamb stuffed into roti (flatbread) and covered with egg. It was very good, rich with gamey lamb and doughy roti.

Other dishes included the tandoori special:

Masala dosa, which D. thought was a little flavorless.

And samosas, served with a side of chickpea curry.

My thoughts? Yummy. That's all. Good Indian food makes me so happy that I'm without words. I don't know the cuisine well enough to discuss ingredients and origins, so if any of you out there in the interweb care to enlighten me, I'd be most appreciative.

Can't wait for a return trip!

4 bites:

White On Rice Couple said...

I'm just like you...I love Indian food, but still do not know much about the the ingredients of the cuisine yet.
Yesterday I had Indian food for lunch and had a great curry dish. I asked the lady what the flavor was in it that I did not recognize and she told me it was dried fenugreek leaves. Wow! That's new for me! I want to learn so much more.
Those samosas look great!

Kim in the Kitchen said...

Ha...The interweb! I thought I was the only who said that! Do you say it in a funny voice?

HoneyB said...

O how delish! I just wish we had an Indian place around here still. The only one we had closed :(

I will make it for myself, but Grumpy doesn't care for it as much as I do.

moowiesqrd said...

WORC- I'm very intrigued by fenugreek leaves. The Indian markets around here carry it fresh, but I'd love to try it properly prepared first!

Kim- I say everything in a funny voice. ;)

HoneyB- Thanks for dropping by! I'm lucky that San Diego has a few good Indian places, even though Vik's is in Berkeley. Like Grumpy, D. doesn't care much for Indian food. Sigh.

4 bites