Turning Up The Heat At
The Spice Village Grill
By Danny & Saral/ email@example.com
Dont be fooled Spice Village Grill is not just
an Indian restaurant.
Born in Lahore, Pakistan in 1952, owner Tabassum Ali came
to the United States in 1980, providing a key link to his
culinary vision. He watched his mother cook as a young boy,
and his roots encouraged him to fuse Indian, Pakistani, Persian
and Afghani recipes. Now, hes turned his hobby into
Once he built his roots in the States, Ali racked up as many
as 13 storefronts, but sold them all except for his digs on
Main Street in Huntington the corner of Main and Wall
Streets is just too good to give up, he said. A Huntington
resident since 1986, Ali opened a camera shop at the location
in 1991, which he closed last January. Then, the family briefly
transformed the storefront into a hookah lounge before Spice
Village opened about a month ago. The small, cozy dining room,
naturally lit through its large windows and dressed in black
tablecloths, maroon linens and throw rugs, was filled to capacity
during our Friday lunch visit.
Alis soups of the day vegetarian Mulligatawny
and Kaukswe ($4.50) are both good starters. The Mulligatawny,
with its rich curry and lentil flavor, is thick and satisfying
without being dense, while the Kaukswe (pronounced cow-sway)
is a unique medley of flavors with rice, chicken and vegetables.
The aroma hints at a buttery base, while a bright lemon note
emerges after you take a spoonful.
Chicken Tikka Masala ($10.99) is mild and savory, and the
medallions of chicken pair well with Spice Villages
excellent basmati rice. Soak up the aromatic cream sauce with
some naan bread, which will run you no more than $2.50.
Torn on our entrée decision, we decided to go for a
little of everything, thanks to the Mixed Grill ($14.99).
A good place to start for first-time visitors, the platter
comes with a small rib eye steak, chicken, lamb and shrimp
seekh kebabs, and chicken and lamb tikka. The juicy tender
lamb is the zestiest of the bunch; the remarkably tender chicken
is next in line on the spicy list. The fresh, juicy shrimp
and the rib eye are smoky and mellow, while the seekh kebabs,
or meat sausages, are nutty and delicious; the lamb sausage
packs an extra, spicy punch.
After our entrees, Gulab Jamun, or sugary dough balls, are
served warm in sweet, but not oppressive, rosewater-cardamom
syrup, and Sooji Halwa is warm, enticing and semi-sweet semolina
browned with cardamom and simmered in scented sugar with almonds
and raisins. All five of the restaurants desserts, which
include Zarda Rice, Ras Malai and Milk Cake, run about $5.
Thus we took advantage one of the untold joys of splitting
a mixed grill for lunch plenty of room for dessert.
281 Main St. Huntington village
Cuisine: South Asian-Middle Eastern fusion
Atmosphere: Small, laid-back bistro with service to
Price range: Moderate
11 a.m. 10 p.m. Sunday Thursday
11 a.m. 11 p.m. Friday & Saturday