Siddhartha’s Indian Kitchen

I haven’t purchased a package from VANEATS.ca since my meal at Ebisu a year ago. I remember that meal as being fulfilling, but admittedly lacklustre. Still, I purchased the package available for Siddhartha’s Indian Kitchen, a small, relatively new Indian restaurant on the Drive. I love Indian food and hadn’t had it in a while, and the reviews of the package seemed quite positive overall. So on a rainy Monday, SB and I headed down the Drive to redeem our meal for two.

The restaurant itself was clean, but a bit empty during our visit. I suppose that’s to be expected for a small restaurant on a Monday night, though. We took our seats by the window and informed the server of our VanEats package, and added on another curry for good measure. The package itself cost $18.

DSC_0006The first dish of our meal to arrive was the Aloo Tiki, two crispy potato cakes served with a blend of Delhi, tamarind, and mango sauces topped with pomegranate and cilantro. The first dish of any meal is important in setting the tone for the entire meal, especially if it’s your first visit to the restaurant. Sadly, this dish was a flop. On the bright side, these little cakes were crispy on the outside, which was a nice textural contrast from the dense inside. However, parts of the inside were seriously cold, like it had just come out of the freezer. It was just unacceptable and inedible. There was really no excuse for this, especially considering that there were only two tables occupied at this point in our meal (and the other table hadn’t even ordered yet). The sauces were both sweet and savoury, and reminded me of tonkatsu sauce. It would have been a good dish otherwise, but the inside being frozen and cold was just a horrible first experience. We were seriously unimpressed by this, which set the tone for the rest of the meal.

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Next up, we had the Cucumber Salad, which was a small portion of fresh cucumber, onion, tomato, and bell peppers. The veggies seemed fresh, which is all I really ask for in a salad. It was a refreshing way to clear our palates when sampling our various curries.

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The curries included in the VanEats package were the Chicken Korma on the left and the Butter Chicken on the right. Of these two, we preferred the korma, which tasted strongly of coconut. It was creamy and sweet, but also had a spicy aftertaste that we enjoyed. However, the meat was quite dry, which could have been fixed if it had been served in smaller pieces. Meanwhile, the butter chicken was different from what we’ve had at other Indian restaurants. It was quite thick and creamy, and for some reason reminded us of Campbell’s mushroom soup. It had less of a strong tomato flavour, and the chicken again was quite dry. The creamy texture of it was so overwhelming that we couldn’t really notice much else about the dish. The accompanying rice was undercooked and quite hard in some places, although it was of a decent portion size.

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Lastly, we also added the Chennai Lamb Curry ($13.99), figuring that we wouldn’t get full from the VanEats package alone. I personally love lamb, but I wasn’t a huge fan of this. The curry itself was very oily (as you can see from the photo), and incredibly salty. The more you ate of it, the more you noticed the saltiness. It was fine when eaten with the rice, but it was still a tad too salty for my tastes. The lamb, like the chicken in the other curries, was quite dry, and served in large pieces. To their credit, it didn’t taste overly gamy, as tends to happen with lamb. There were no other real discernible ingredients in the curry other than the lamb–no potatoes or anything, which made it a bit uninteresting to eat as well.

In any case, I would categorize our dinner at Siddhartha’s as unmemorable. Although the rest of the meal was average, the frozen inside of the aloo tiki left us sorely unimpressed and a tad disturbed. Still, judging by the number of positive reviews they’ve garnered online, it appears that our experience doesn’t reflect on their usual food preparation practices. Still, as much as I love Indian food, I probably wouldn’t return to Siddhartha’s again.

Siddhartha’s Indian Kitchen
2066 Commercial Drive
Vancouver, BC

Siddhartha's Indian Kitchen on Urbanspoon

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