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India Garden spicing up the Auburn landscape

January 13, 2010

With football season partially over (No, it never ends on the Plains. Thank you.), Josephine and I ventured out to the newly opened, India Garden on Opelika Road. They took over the former location of Breezeway chicken fingers, effectively reducing the chicken finger joints in the area to just under 200.

What sprang up instead was a pure delight for adventurous and open-minded diners.

You probably won’t miss the place if you’re unsure of where exactly to go in the tangled heap of repurposed buildings on Opelika Road. The India Garden stands out as a colorful addition to the Auburn side of Opelika Road.

Inside, the decor is what you might expect: pictures of elephants, jungles, turbaned Indians and the Taj Mahal. A noted and pleasant exception is white linen tablecloths. The staff is very conversant and helpful about the menu. Our waiter was able to steer us away from ordering too much food as he described portion sizes and dishes.

We tried the vegetable samosas to start and followed that with Chicken Korma and Tandoori Chicken. We also added a side of Garlic Naan bread. The samosas were a very nice beginning, taking potatoes and peas and deep frying them. They weren’t greasy or heavy and instead allowed all of the spices in the potatoes to come through in balance.

Tandoori Chicken is a personal favorite and it arrived at the table on a sizzling bed of onions atop a very hot plate. With the Naan bread and rice, it really was an authentic, not too spicy and wonderful lunch.

Josephine’s Chicken Korma stole the show. The yellow gravy with cashews and almonds smelled divine and tasted even better. Again, served with rice and the Naan bread it was hard not to take it away from her after I wolfed down my tandoori chicken. As good as it was in the restaurant, it was even better the next day as leftovers.

Joe and Josephine both highly recommend India Garden the next time you’re looking to spice up your lunch or dinner plans. Don’t forget to try the Kingfisher beer, a staple of the Indian beer selection, while you’re there (time of day permitting of course!).

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